Leinster Rugby Head Coach Leo Cullen has confirmed that 15 players have signed new IRFU contracts with the province for 2017/18 and beyond, including Adam Byrne, Jack Conan and Jordi Murphy.

There are no new deals for former Ireland tight-head Mike Ross or flanker Dominic Ryan.

While the central contracts for Jamie Heaslip and Devin Toner had already been announced, Cullen confirmed that an additional 13 contracts have been signed as Leinster continue to build for the future.

"Only a few weeks ago we were able to confirm the promotion of seven players from within our own Academy to the Senior squad," Cullen told the Leinster Rugby official website.

"The news today of the retention of a further 13 players to the Leinster roster is a huge boost as we look to build towards next season. "You need to have a strong squad capable of challenging on two fronts. 

"We have used 51 players so far this season in the Guinness PRO12 and the Champions Cup and with 14 players capped during Ireland's 6 Nations campaign it is vitally important that we have that level of competition and experience across the squad at all times to try to maintain consistency in both competitions.” 

Today's announcement comes on the back of the high profile signings of Australian international Scott Fardy and Maori All Blacks winger James Lowe. 

"We are trying to play a brand of rugby that excites people and we want to give those supporters in the RDS or in the Aviva Stadium something to really get behind.

 "The signings of Scott and James as well as the other lads that we have promoted to the Senior ranks and that we have retained is, I hope, a sign of where we want to bring Leinster next season and into the future.” 

Included in the list of 15 players are eight Irish internationals with 182 caps between them and in total they have represented Leinster on 970 occasions to date.

Leinster signings: Adam Byrne, Bryan Byrne, Ed Byrne Jack Conan, Barry Daly, Tom Daly, Jamie Heaslip,  Mick Kearney, Dan Leavy, Luke McGrath,  Jordi Murphy, Ian Nagle, Noel Reid, Richardt Strauss,  Devin Toner

Ulster meanwhile have been boosted by the news that exciting youngsters Jacob Stockdale, Ross Kane and Rob Lyttle have signed new contracts with the province.

Stockdale has enjoyed a fine season thus far, scoring eight tries in 14 appearances, while Kane and Lyttle, both of whom are current members of the Academy, have been rewarded for their excellent development this season with a place on the senior panel.

They have already made significant contributions to Les Kiss' squad, having made 11 and 8 appearances respectively.