Conor Murray's new contract a big boost for Irish rugby

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Conor Murray has given Irish rugby a boost by committing his immediate future to Munster.

The British and Irish Lions and Ireland scrum-half has penned a two-year deal with the IRFU which will run until 2016.

Having lost Jonathan Sexton to France earlier this summer, the focus has been on the likes of Jamie Heaslip, Murray and Sean O'Brien to secure their futures.

And Murray's new deal is excellent news for the country.

The Munster No10 tweeted: "Delighted to have signed on for another 2 years, really looking forward to the future! Thanks everyone for yer best wishes."

There had been fears his head could be turned by the French clubs and follow Sexton to the Top 14, which would have left Munster in big trouble in the scrum-half department.

He has been touted as Europe's best number nine after playing his part in the Lions success this summer as well as a promising display in a 24-22 loss to New Zealand.

And this gives Joe Schmidt's men a timely boost heading into the Six Nations next spring.

It's been a meteoric rise through the ranks for the 24-year-old Ireland international following his debut against Connacht in 2010.

Murray has since racked up 22 Ireland caps as well as helping Munster reach the semi-finals of last season's Heineken Cup.

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