The IRFU has revealed that Paul Dean has stepped down from his post as Ireland team manager.

Dean, who played for Ireland at the inaugural World Cup in 1987, was an integral part of the Ireland set-up since succeeding Mick Kearney in the logistical role in 2016.

The 59-year-old paid tribute to his former colleagues and reflected on his highlight in the job, saying: "I have enjoyed working with all the team, management, players and administrators at the IRFU for the past three seasons.  

"The Grand Slam, the victory in Australia and the home win over New Zealand are obvious standout moments, but even when things were not going our way it was a privilege to work alongside this great team of people.

"Over the past few weeks, I have concluded that as the team enters another four-year cycle to France 2023, it is time for me to step away.

"I wish Andy (Farrell, new Ireland coach) and all the management and players the very best for the years ahead and I thank my family for allowing me the time to work with a great Irish team."