Munster defence coach JP Ferreira is the first to acknowledge that Faf de Klerk and Craig Casey are at contrasting points in their careers but he can think of nobody better than the World Cup winner for the young Limerick scrum-half to follow.
Munster may be without out-half Joey Carbery for the opening two rounds of the Champions Cup against Ospreys and Racing 92. Defence coach JP Ferreira said the priority was to get him and all the Irish internationals right for the season on their return from the World Cup.
JP Ferreira, the Munster defence coach, has renewed his contract by another two years, while further positive news for the province is that Graham Rowntree, the former England prop, has arrived to take over from Jerry Flannery as forwards coach.
When you are idle in a hotel room in Johannesburg, the pre-match statistics booklet for the Heineken Cup final offers welcome respite from the boredom. Where’s the oul paddies out here when you need one for a chat? Which is why a mass of statistics has become my coffee buddy for part of the week.
So, they meet again. Two years on from a semi-final encounter in Dublin that has proven significant for both sides, Munster and Saracens will be reunited at Coventry’s Ricoh Arena tomorrow for another Heineken Champions Cup knockout tussle.
His career as a water carrier brought to an ignominious end by the arrival of defence coach JP Ferreira, Tyler Bleyendaal must content himself with a return to the day job, delighted to be free of the neck injury which had left him such a frustrated figure on the Munster sidelines.
For all the good news coming out of Munster in the past couple of days, the appearance of centres Matt Toomua and Manu Tuilagi on the Leicester Tigers teamsheet yesterday lunchtime will have offered a sobering counterpoint ahead of tomorrow’s Champions Cup re-match at Welford Road.