Limerick man and IRFU talent coach Tom Tierney has passed away at 46

The late Tom Tierney as U19 Ireland head coach in 2018 in Donnybrook for Ireland U19 vs Japan (Credit ©INPHO/Oisin Keniry)

The former Munster and Ireland star had been working with the IRFU since 2014

By James Roulston Mooney

Limerick native and IRFU National Talent Coach Tom Tierney has passed away aged 46.

Mr Tierney represented Garryowen, Munster, Leicester Tigers, Galwegians, Connacht and Ireland as a player.

He lined out for Ireland eight times in his career, making his debut in June 1999 and appearing four times at the Rugby World Cup later that year.

Tierney scored his only try for Ireland in their closing Pool E game – a 44-14 win over Romania.

The Limerick native moved into coaching after his playing career came to a close and held roles at Crescent College, Garryowen, Cork Constitution and the Ireland Club XV side.

He had been employed by the IRFU since 2014, involved with Ireland’s Men’s U19 and U20, Ireland Women’s 7s and Ireland Women’s 15s for three years -where his honours included a 2015 Women’s Six Nations Championship.

His role as an IRFU National Talent Coach had seen him based out of Munster Rugby’s High Performance Centre in UL since 2021, working with the province’s Academy and National Talent Squad players.

Munster Rugby CEO, Ian Flanagan, said: “On behalf of Munster Rugby, I would like to express our deepest condolences to Tom’s wife Mary, daughters Isabel and Julia, and the wider Tierney family.

“We are shocked and deeply saddened by Tom’s sudden passing. A great servant to Munster and Irish Rugby he will be dearly missed. The younger players and his colleagues in the HPC enjoyed working closely with Tom each day as he brought a great energy and unique personality to his role, always ensuring the future of Munster Rugby was in safe hands.

“May he rest in peace.”

IRFU Chief Executive Kevin Potts said: “Everyone in Irish Rugby is deeply shocked to hear of the sudden loss of Tom Tierney. Our immediate thoughts are with his wife Mary and daughters Isabel and Julia, as well as his many friends, colleagues and former teammates.

“Tom was an outstanding scrum-half and his time in the Ireland jersey will always be an immense source of pride for his family and the clubs that supported him on his journey.

“He also amassed an impressive CV as a coach and we were honoured to have him as a colleague in the IRFU from 2014 to present. He will be sorely missed.”

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