The sport of rugby is in a state of shock following the sudden passing of Tom Tierney.
Tom, 46, represented Connacht from 2004-2008 as well as Galwegians, Richmond, Garryowen, Munster and Leicester Tigers during an illustrious career.
The scrum-half made his debut for Ireland in June, 1999 and went on to earn eight caps including four appearances at the 1999 Rugby World Cup where he scored a try in the Pool E win against Romania.
After transitioning into coaching, the Limerick native held head coaching roles with Crescent College Comprehensive SJ, Garryowen, Cork Constitution and the Ireland Club XV side.
He had been employed by the IRFU since 2014 including coaching roles with Ireland u19 and U20 Mens, 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 IRFU National Talent Coach had seen him based out of Munster Rugby’s High Performance Centre since 2021, working with Munster’s Academy players.
Connacht Rugby CEO Willie Ruane said: “We are all deeply saddened to hear of Tom’s sudden passing. Tom gave an enormous amount to the game of rugby, particularly in Connacht as a former player at provincial level and club level with Galwegians. He will be sorely missed and the thoughts of all at Connacht Rugby are with his wife Mary, two daughters, wider family and friends, and our colleagues at Munster Rugby and the IRFU.”
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 team-mates. 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.”