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Last Updated: Wednesday May 07 2008 13:23 GMT

Declan Kidney is Ireland coach

Declan Kidney

Declan Kidney has been named as Ireland's new rugby coach, but he won't be starting his new job straight away.

The 48-year-old Munster coach has signed a contract which will put him in charge until the 2011 World Cup.

But he's not taking over until after Ireland's New Zealand and Australia summer tour, so he can prepare Munster for their Heineken Cup final.

Kidney will be taking over from Ireland's last coach, Eddie O'Sullivan, who resigned in March.

O'Sullivan stood down after Ireland finished fourth in the Six Nations.

Kidney, who's been favourite to take the role ever since, said he was "delighted" with his new job.

He said: "There is no greater honour for any coach than to lead his own country."

Eddie O'Sullivan
Eddie O'Sullivan
It's thought Connacht coach Michael Bradley will be named as temporary coach for the summer tour.

Kidney's first challenge will be to prepare Ireland for an autumn series that includes Tests against the All Blacks and Argentina.