Club world cups, autumn internationals, keeping ahead of a couple of giant South African locks, Fineen Wycherley has plenty to chew over but getting regular game time with Munster is the goal.

The 23-year-old second row from Bantry won his first Ireland cap when coming on as a replacement against the USA in the summer.

So far this season everything has been going to plan.

The former Cistercian College, Roscrea student has started both of the team's United Rugby Championship games as Munster topped the table with two wins from two.

But with the province in rude health, there’s going to be a savage battle for starting places in the coming months.

Wycherley, who can also play in the back row, faces competition from RG Snyman, Tadhg Beirne, Jean Kleyn, Thomas Ahern, Alex Kendellen, Jason Jenkins, John Hodnett, Chris Cloete, Jack O’Sullivan, Gavin Coombes, Peter O’Mahony and Jack O’Donoghue.

"Let them all shoot it out," former Munster and Ireland lock Donal Lenihan said of the riches at Johann van Graan's disposal on the RTÉ Rugby podcast.

"Throw them all into the mix and it’s best man wins."

"The competition is massive in that back five," conceded Wycherley ahead of Munster’s game away to the Scarlets on Sunday (live on RTÉ2 and RTÉ Player).

"We all have to work really hard. Everybody brings their own attributes to the game and to the team.

"It is all about the team and we are just going to keep driving to progress personally and then keep trying to play and focus on yourself, what you bring to the team and what you are good at; hopefully you will get selected.

"We have been lucky with injuries, touch wood.

"There are a lot of lads that are fit, coming back from injuries, RG, Jason, Tadhg are back in the mix in a couple of weeks.

"It is a hugely competitive area in the second row and back row. We have to keep working, each player look after themselves and hopefully we will all get game time during the season."

Gavin Coombes (l) and Fineen Wycherley on Ireland duty against USA

Ireland will face Japan, New Zealand and Argentina in the November internationals and after getting a taste of the food at the top table, the Cork man wants more but knows it’s about taking small steps.

Asked how he plans on turning Andy Farrell’s head again, he said: "You can’t look too far forward, you have to take it game by game.

"We have Scarlets this weekend. I am going to keep reviewing and work on things each week, take it week by week, really.

"If I am lucky enough to get the call up (for Ireland) in a couple of weeks time or whenever I will be delighted."


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Yesterday, outgoing EPCR chairman Simon Halliday suggested that a club world cup competition is on the cards, a meeting for the top sides from both hemispheres every four years, with more details to follow.

"It might be interesting," said Wycherley, who made his Munster debut in 2017 and has won 64 provincial caps, of the concept.

"I haven’t really thought about it too much but it would definitely add a bit of competition and every four years it would be something to look forward to, 100%."

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Follow Scarlets v Munster (Sunday 2pm) via our live blog on RTÉ.ie/sport or the RTÉ News app, or watch live on RTÉ2 and RTÉ Player. Watch Leinster v Zebre (Saturday, 1pm) on RTÉ2 and RTÉ Player.