Murphy eyes up permanent Ulster management job

"It's always like this in Belfast, isn't it?!" Richie Murphy joked as he met the press for the first time at a sunny Kingspan on Tuesday.

If he does move here, which he's planning to if he gets the Ulster job full time, he'll soon see it's not all sunshine and rainbows but his positive outlook is welcomed at this transitional time.

Murphy replaces the recently departed Dan McFarland who spent six years as head coach.

While the Bray man is on an interim contract until the end of the season it would appear the plan for both parties is for him to stay long term.

"I'm very interested to stay," he admitted, "all these things over the next couple of weeks will become clearer, we haven't had those discussions yet but it is something that I'm interested in doing.

"I've already been looking for places to live in Belfast."

Ireland scrum coach John Fogarty is assisting Murphy on a part time basis, two days a week to prepare the scrum for games.

He's travelling to South Africa with the squad for the two upcoming URC games against the Sharks and the Stormers.

The Ireland players are also on the plane, except for Jacob Stockdale who's staying home to be with his wife who has just given birth to their second child.

Alan O'Connor is returning from injury but will also miss the trip because his wife is due to give birth.

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