Kevin O'Keeffe Diary
Week 4 Munster Rugby Talent Camp, Rockwell College.
Week four was slightly different to our first three weeks in camp as we had a visit from a number of senior players as well as a game against the U20's.
It was good to break up our usual routine a bit and do a few things differently from the first three weeks in camp.
Tuesday was tough going as we had two rugby sessions to accommodate the senior players visit the following day. We were all fairly wrecked come Tuesday night, with Ben Killenny (No. 8) tucked in with his teddy bear and blanky before 9 o'clock.
We then had strongman Wednesday morning but it was more weights orientated, with a few of the usual tyre exercises still there to haunt us. Gordon Brett (Strength and Conditioner) had a evil smile on his face throughout of course!
The senior players came in after lunch to do a PSS (position specific skills) session. This was a bit of a thrill for all of us, getting some first hand tips from some of our heroes. All four squads split up into groups of the same position and matched up with the corresponding senior player.
Personally, I got to spend an hour kicking with Ian Keatley who was really into it and had a lot prepared for us and gave us some really good stuff to work on. Of course Keith Murphy (Head Coach) tried to steal the limelight, but he got the hooks and didn't get a kick all afternoon. Donncha O'Callaghan also gave us a masterclass in drop offs to all of our surprises... it was always a toss up between 10 and 2nd row for him so the lads were saying.
BJ Botha, Donncha O'Callaghan, James Coughlan, Cathal Sheridan, Keatley, Casey Laulala and Denis Hurley were all out for the afternoon and gave us all a lot to think about and work on.
On Thursday we had a mock game against the 20's refereed by Heineken Cup ref. Johnny Lacey - it was great to have someone of such experience keeping us in check. This was a fairly physical encounter with the bragging rights at stake...
When Thursday lunchtime came there was a buzz around Rockwell as we were all dreaming of the download week to come, Ben Martin (Backs Coach) went straight home to get some badly needed practise in for our golf outing in Charleville the following week.
Four weeks in a row had us all badly in need of a break. Steve McMahon (full back) had a sneaky holiday with his girlfriend planned... The cats out of the bag now though!
Munster U19 Interprovincial Friendlies
Sun. 11th Aug. Exiles U19 v Munster U19, Reading, ko 12pm
Fri. 16 Aug. Munster U19 v Italy U20, Musgrave Park. ko off 6.30pm
Tue. 20th Aug. Clermont Avergne Academy /Leicester Academy v Munster U19, Leicester, ko 6pm
Fri. 23rd Aug, Cardiff U19 v Munster U19, Cardiff, ko 2pm
Munster U19s Interprovincial Fixtures:
Sat. 7th Sept. Ulster U19 v Munster U19, venue TBC
Sat. 14th Sept. Munster U19 v Leinster U19, venue TBC
Sat. 21st Sept. Connacht U19 v Munster U19, venue TBC