Eight players will be moving to the Munster senior squad this summer with three new signings joining the club as five players are promoted from the Greencore Munster Rugby Academy to senior contracts.
Malakai Fekitoa, Antoine Frisch and Chris Moore are the new additions with Scott Buckley, Paddy Kelly, Alex Kendellen, Eoin O’Connor and Paddy Patterson progressing from the Academy.
Malakai Fekitoa - A World Cup winner with the All Blacks in 2015, Malakai Fekitoa can play in either centre position and has signed a two-year contract with Munster. Born and raised in Ha’apai, Tonga, Fekitoa moved to Auckland as a teenager after earning a scholarship at Wesley College thanks to his performances for the Tonga Sevens age-grade sides. He made 24 appearances for the All Blacks between 2014 and 2017 and helped the Highlanders to their first-ever Super Rugby title in 2015. Fekitoa departed the Highlanders for Toulon in 2017 and spent two seasons in France before spending the last three years at Wasps.
Antoine Frisch - Centre Antoine Frisch has joined Munster on a three-year contract from the Bristol Bears. Irish-qualified through his maternal grandmother, he made 13 appearances for the Premiership side last season. He previously lined out for PRO D2 side Rouen Normandie.
Chris Moore (Exeter University) - Hooker Chris Moore hails from Trowbridge in England and lined out for the Ireland U18 Clubs team alongside new team-mates Paddy Kelly and Eoin O’Connor in 2018. A graduate of Beechen Cliff school, Moore has been playing with Exeter University in the BUCS (British Universities & Colleges Sport) league and joins the province on a one-year deal.
Harry Wilson's remarkable 100no off 35 balls - the right genes in this Wallaby to hit England for six at SCG
July 15, 2022
A motivated Harry Wilson is primed to hit England for six at the Sydney Cricket Ground where he once daydreamed of playing as a swashbuckling batsman. Wilson, 23, outlined the tweaks he has worked hard on to be a more complete player after being selected on Thursday for his first Test in 11 months. He is still that bull-at-a-gate powerhouse, with the offloading knack, who coach Dave Rennie rewarded with a Test debut in 2020 but with refinements. When Wilson was still a teenage student at St Joseph’s College, Gregory Terrace in 2017, he produced one of the most audacious displays of power hitting in the history of Brisbane's GPS competition.
His 100 not out off just 35 balls was a rampage of 15 fours and five sixes against Ipswich Grammar. Cricket may have shaded rugby for top billing for a time before his break with the Australian Schoolboys set him on his rapid rise to the Junior Wallabies and Queensland Reds. His knowledge of the SCG stretches to all those classic Australia-England factoids like Steve Waugh’s century off the last ball of the day during the 2002-03 Ashes Test and Usman Khawaja’s twin tons just six months ago.
“I can’t wait for Saturday night. Obviously, being a cricket tragic growing up watching the Ashes every four years, it is certainly one of the biggest rivalries in sport,” Wilson said. “To be able to play the rugby version of it is pretty cool.” Wilson has played at the SCG once for Queensland. Unfortunately, he’ll not get to use the cricket dressing rooms that those Wallabies of Mark Ella’s era did in the early 1980s. “Yeah, I’ve only played there once before so I’m really excited. And I was just saying before, I hope we get to use the cricket change rooms but I’m not sure they’ll be big enough for all of us,” said Wilson, who will have to detour to the footy-specific dressing rooms. Wilson’s workrate for the Reds is renowned. Cranking out 14 runs and 14 tackles against the NSW Waratahs at Leichhardt Oval when in hot early season form was typical.
His skills at slipping a high offload, finding the tryline just metres out and nearly always getting into games early are other obvious assets to throw at the English pack. Playing at blindside flanker, rather than No.8, requires a little tweak of focus. “For me at No.6, it’s a bit more focused on set piece with my lineout and maul roles. I’ve worked on them for a long time so I’m looking forward to enacting them,” Wilson said. Wilson even tried jujitsu during the off-season to work on his strength around the breakdown. “Jujitsu is something different. It’s kind of just working on strength low to the ground. I’m not sure if it has helped but I guess it was cool to do,” Wilson said. The Wallabies will find out soon enough at the SCG where Wilson can impose himself on a massive climax to the series.