Munster will partner with the Irish Heart Foundation for the upcoming season to leave a lifesaving legacy in memory of Anthony Foley, writes Stephen Barry.
The aim of the partnership is to highlight the importance of CPR training and raise awareness of the work carried out by the Foundation, with Munster players and staff undertaking training in CPR skills.
Former head coach Foley died suddenly in his hotel room in Paris on October 16, when away with the Munster team. Almost one year on from his tragic passing, his wife Olive hopes more lives can be saved from sudden cardiac death, which claims 5,000 lives in Ireland every year, averaging 13 per day.
She said: “The Irish Heart Foundation does incredible work and it’s only right that we would give our full support to this initiative.
“This will hopefully help save lives and if it’s only one it will be more than worth every effort made.
“It’s an initiative that I know Anthony would really appreciate.”
The partnership begins with the Champions Cup game against Racing 92 in Thomond Park on Saturday, October 21, when Munster will wear the Irish Heart Foundation’s logo on the front of the players’ jerseys.
The province will also provide support for a number of initiatives throughout the season, including the designated 'Charity Match' on St Stephen's Day and rolling-out CPR training to six clubs.
Irish Heart Foundation’s Basic Life Support expert Brigid Sinnott said: “Together with Munster Rugby, our goal is to help more people understand the need to learn CPR because it could save someone you love.”