Connacht disappointed to lose McCarthy
Rugby:Connacht have expressed their disappointment at losing another key player to Leinster after it was confirmed that Ireland second row Mike McCarthy will leave the province at the end of this season. McCarthy, whose current contract expires in the summer, has agreed a three-year deal with the current European champions.
The English-born 31-year-old will follow a well trodden path with Sean Cronin, Fionn Carr and Jamie Hagan all moving to Dublin in recent seasons. Connacht also lost Ian Keatley to Munster last summer with the westerners often unable to keep hold of players when the other provinces come calling.
“We are bitterly disappointed to lose Mike McCarthy, who has been a popular senior member of our squad,” Connacht chief executive Tom Sears said this morning. “While disappointed, particularly given the continued success of Connacht in recent years, we respect the individual player’s decision and wish Mike every success in his future playing career.
“We have been aware of Leinster’s interest in Mike for some time. It is disappointing they have persistently targeted Connacht players in recent years, particularly when often not in the best interest of Irish rugby.”
McCarthy started Ireland’s tests against South Africa and Argentina last month, featuring in the second-row, and can also operate in the back row.