Conway closes in on move from Leinster to Munster

Fri, Jan 25, 2013, 00:00

Andrew Conway, a standout performer for the Irish Under-20s when scoring five tries in both the 2010 and 2011 Junior World Cups, is on the verge of making one of the more intriguing moves of the professional era by leaving his native Leinster at the end of the season to join Munster.

The Dublin-born 21-year-old looked set for a rapid rise through the ranks with Leinster after a celebrated under-age career with Blackrock, Leinster and the Ireland schools and under-20 sides, but in his fourth season with Leinster has evidently become a little frustrated at playing just 30 times for the province in that timespan (scoring five tries).

Ankle and neck injuries, coupled with his back-to-back summer campaigns at Junior World Cups, prevented him from an extended pre-season until last summer, but despite his own hopes that this season would mark a breakthrough, he has been confined to just 11 appearances in which he has scored two tries.

Compounding Conway’s frustration at his lack of progress would have been the sight of Simon Zebo and Craig Gilroy overtaking him en route to their first steps in Test rugby. The pacey winger-cum-fullback with an eye for the try line like few recent underage products, Conway had also attracted interest from Connacht and France, with Leinster also keen to retain him.

Following Fionn Carr’s decision to return to Connacht, Conway’s prospective switch to Munster will heighten speculation about the future of the latter’s captain, all-time record try-scorer Doug Howlett, who was due to enter talks with Munster about his future after the completion of the Heineken Cup pool stages, but it is understood no decision has been made.

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