Former Irish International Blasts The IRFU’s Decision To Let Donnacha Ryan Go
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Former Irish international Tony Ward has blasted the IRFU’s decision to not offer Donnacha Ryan a central contract.
The Munster lock looks set to join Racing 92 on a two-year with Munster admitting that they cannot match the offer without the IRFU’s backing. The IRFU have reportedly cited Ryan’s age as their deciding factor despite being just four days older than Jamie Heaslip, who was recently given a new three-year deal.
Tony Ward was speaking to RTE Sports today and while he does’t doesn’t have a problem with Heaslip getting an extension, he does take issue with how Ryan hasn’t been treated the same as the Leinster star.
“The inconsistency is where I have the issue given that there are only four days between himself and Jamie. I have no problem with Jamie getting a contract but why is it one rule for Jamie and one for Donnacha? That’s what I don’t get and that’s what’s unfair.
“I think it sends out a very unfair message that it’s okay for one player to get an extended contract, but not for another. It’s nothing to do with Jamie Heaslip on a personal level, but I just think it’s unfair on Donnacha Ryan.
“It’s not as if we have abundance of second rows around at the moment.”
Ward thinks Munster and Ireland are losing a player at the top of his game.
“I think Donnacha is playing to the zenith of his career – as good as he has ever played,” he added.
“It was a no-brainer for the IRFU to keep him. I know the IRFU will say they have to balance their books, but it’s sad that a great talent is been shown the door.”