Tomas O'Leary outlines why he felt he had to leave Munster

Scrum-half is at Montpellier on a short-term deal

Tomas O'Leary

Tomas O'Leary ©INPHO/Morgan Treacy

Tomas O'Leary says being left out of Munster's European squad for this season was one of the things that spurred a move to the continent. 

The 33-year-old made the move to French top flight side Montpellier in October on a short-term deal from Munster.

The scrum-half is currently sidelined for six to eight weeks after sustaining a medial knee ligament injury against Racing 92 in the Top 14 at the weekend.

"It's kind of disappointing with that. But aside from that, I'm enjoying the new experience on the other side of France. So life is pretty good," he told Newstalk.

Being left him out of the European squad at Munster gave him an indication of his standing in the pecking order. 

"I was probably pretty frustrated not to get into the European squad in Munster and then I kind of said I'd have a look around and see what else is there. 

"I'm 33 years of age and not getting any younger so I want to play rugby at this stage of my career. So it looked like I wasn't going to get much game-time in Munster. So when the opportunity came up at Montpellier, I kind of grabbed it with both hands and I was keen to play rugby.

"Obviously the new experience in the south of France is an added bonus too."

He also added that he would have regretted not trying an adventure abroad at least once in his career.

"I just felt from the fact that I wasn't named in the European squad, that was a major indication of where I was in the pecking order," he said, although he emphasised that he remains a "Munster man through and through".

He also paid tribute to late team-mate, friend and coach Anthony Foley, describing him as a "real leader" and explaining how it was a privilege to play and work with him.