The Munster side that beat Australia in 2010: where are they now?


In light of Munster taking on South Africa Select XV this Thursday, today we look back on their memorable 15-6 win over Australia in 2010 at Thomond.

The team of the day was mostly a mix of youngsters and imports. Some names need very little introduction, while others will have been largely forgotten over the past 12 years.

Paul Warwick scored all of Munster’s points that night at Thomond as they continued their tradition of being the toughest opponents for the international opposition, regardless of which XV was knocked out.

1. Wian Du Preez

Du Preez first joined Munster on loan from the Cheetahs in 2009, before transferring the following season and staying with the province until 2013.

He was a quality operator, as evidenced by his sole Springbok cap from 2009, and retired from professional rugby with Lyon in 2016.

According to Linkedin, his last job listed is as a financial planner with South African company Jenwil BlueStar.

November 16, 2010; Munster’s Wian du Preez supported by team-mates Peter Borlase, Billy Holland and Conor Murray. Sony Ericsson Challenge, Munster v Australia, Thomond Park, Limerick. Photo credit: Diarmuid Greene/SPORTSFILE

2. Damien Varley

After making his Muster debut in 2006, he played nearly a decade with the province until 2015, interrupted only briefly by a spell at Wasps in 2008/09.

Despite competing with Jerry Flannery and Mike Sherry at Munster, he managed to earn three caps for Ireland.

After retiring in 2015, he went into business and is currently COO at Haven Green Investment Management.

3. Pierre Borlase

The former Canterbury and Crusaders prop played for Munster between 2010 and 2012, and had a short stint with Connacht during that time.

After retiring, he coached in Spain before moving to the United States where he coached with Denver Barbarians Rugby and Glendale Raptors Rugby.

According to Linkedin, he still resides in Colorado and is the owner of the aptly named Haka Construction Company.

4. Billy Holland

Munster’s first true legend in the squad and the province’s second most capped player to date.

Holland was 25 when that game was played but still a relative baby in terms of his career at Munster, having only retired at the end of the 2020/21 season.

He won his only Irish cap aged 31 in 2016 and currently works in mortgages with EBS.

5. Ian Nagle

Relatively unknown at the time, Nagle’s reputation grew significantly following his man-of-the-match performance, with many believing the 22-year-old was destined for trophies and international honours.

The match against Australia proved to be the peak of his career, as he battled injuries before embarking on a journeyman career, with stints at Leinster, Ulster, Newcastle and Zebre.

He retired in 2021 and is the co-founder and CEO of Swing Fitness Ltd..

November 16, 2010; Ian Nagle, Munster, tussells in a maul against Scott Higginbotham, Australia. Sony Ericsson Challenge, Munster v Australia, Thomond Park, Limerick. Photo credit: Alan Place/SPORTSFILE

6. Peter O’Mahony

There’s not much to say that we didn’t already know about POM, who was just 21 when Australia arrived at Thomond.

He continues to be struck off for both Munster and Ireland, but continues to scoff at opinions spread on social media.

He produced another top class performance against the Springboks on Saturday.

7. Niall Ronan

One of many Leinster men who have forged successful careers in the south.

He retired to Munster in 2014 and won four Irish caps.

He now resides in his native County Meath and is managing director of Titan Wellness, a fitness facility management company.

8. James Coughlan

The next true Munster legend on our list, and captain of the day.

Coughlan is frequently mentioned among the best Irish players to never be capped, and proved his class beyond doubt with a hugely successful spell at Pau after leaving Munster in 2014.

He remained in France after his retirement and coached in Pau, Aix, Brive and more recently in Toulon where he currently serves as defense coach.

November 16, 2010; Munster’s James Coughlan takes on the Australian defense supported by Peter Borlase and Duncan Williams, right. Sony Ericsson Challenge, Munster v Australia, Thomond Park, Limerick. Photo credit: Diarmuid Greene/SPORTSFILE

9. Duncan Williams

From 2009 to 2019, Williams enjoyed a commendable career at Munster, earning over 150 caps in the process. He was often the subject of unfair abuse by armchair “fans” and dealt with criticism admirably.

He now works as a materials planner at Kepak Group in Cork.

10. Paul Warwick

The Australian has always shown class on the pitch during his time in the province, where he moved in 2007 after a spell at Connacht.

He won two Celtic leagues and a Heineken Cup with Munster, and was also capped by the Barbarians.

He currently works as a physical education teacher and rugby coach at Brisbane Grammar School.

November 16, 2010; Munster’s Paul Warwick. Sony Ericsson Challenge, Munster v Australia, Thomond Park, Limerick. Photo credit: Diarmuid Greene/SPORTSFILE

11. Denis Hurley

A workhorse and extremely useful utility throughout his career with the province where he spent his entire career.

His crowning glory will always be the performances he produced in Munster’s Heineken Cup success in 2008.

He now resides in Cork and works as Commercial and Key Account Manager at West Cork Distillers.

12. Sam Tuitupou

The great center enjoyed a brief but underrated stint at Munster in the 2010/11 season, before playing for Sale Sharks.

He earned nine caps for the All Blacks in the mid-2000s and retired in 2019.

According to Linkedin, he works as a director/agent at Pro Fifteen Limited.

13.Keith Earls

With Peter O’Mahony, the only man who still plays top-level professional rugby. He is still an extremely vital member of the Munster squad, and still in the mix with Ireland.

His career has aged like fine wine, but he has struggled with injuries this season as various other wingers have passed him in the Irish pecking order.

November 16, 2010; Keith Earls, Munster, is tackled by Richard Brown, Australia. Sony Ericsson Challenge, Munster v Australia, Thomond Park, Limerick. Photo credit: Diarmuid Greene/SPORTSFILE

14. Doug Howlett

Probably one of the top five players to import from Irish provincial rugby, and came to Munster when he was still at the peak of his career and had just broken the All Blacks all-time record.

After retiring from the game, he held various positions within Munster rugby, the last of which was sales and marketing manager.

He now lives in New Zealand, where he works in business management and consultancy.

November 16, 2010; Munster players, left to right, Doug Howlett, Scott Deasy, Paul Warwick, Keith Earls, in masks, and Wian du Preez celebrate victory after the match. Sony Ericsson Challenge, Munster v Australia, Thomond Park, Limerick. Photo credit: Diarmuid Greene/SPORTSFILE

15. John Murphy

Murphy cut his teeth with Leicester Tigers, before moving to Munster in 2010.

He was a handy utility for the province until his retirement in 2015 and is one of the founders of Stride Racing, a platform that allows fans to buy elite racehorses.

Head Coach: Tony McGahan

McGahan’s reign is often forgotten and less celebrated than that of his predecessor Declan Kidney and his successor Rob Penney.

He did, however, deliver their last piece of silverware to Munster, and that famous victory over the Wallabies.

On leaving Munster he took up a coaching role with Australia, before moving to Melbourne Rebels and then Queensland Reds.

SEE ALSO: Owen Farrell got roasted in his post-match interview after Argentina loss

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