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Leinster Rugby vs Glasgow Warriors

Leinster | Official Matchday Programme of Leinster Rugby | Issue 04 Leinster Rugby vs Glasgow Warriors | United Rugby Championship Saturday 26 November | KO 3.15pm | RDS Arena

Leinster | Official Matchday Programme of Leinster Rugby | Issue 04
Leinster Rugby vs Glasgow Warriors | United Rugby Championship
Saturday 26 November | KO 3.15pm | RDS Arena

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LEINSTER

VS

ISSUE 04 | LEINSTER RUGBY OFFICIAL MATCHDAY PROGRAMME

glasgow

warriors

SAT 26 th NOVEMBER

RDS ARENA

KO 3.15PM


Our People, Our Home

TWELVE COUNTIES. ONE SHIRT.

Aaron Craig

From a lad wearing Leinster blue to the RDS, to

designing this season’s shirt. Aaron Craig’s journey has

been amazing. The adidas Designer talks us through

his design and what it means to create the shirt for his

boyhood club.

How did you begin working with adidas?

When I was at the National College of Art and Design Dublin, I learned

of adidas’ intern program. A lifelong fan of the brand, I knew it was an

amazing opportunity. Luckily, I got to join adidas as an intern in 2016

and I’ve been in Herzogenaurach (adidas HQ) ever since. I’m now a

licensed apparel designer for some of the biggest teams in the world.

What drew you to this project?

Leinster asked if there were any Irish designers at adidas HQ they

could collaborate with. For a lad who comes from Leinster that grew

up supporting the team, this was a massive bucket list moment. My

grandfather even worked the entrance gates the RDS and Donnybrook

for years.

What was your inspiration for the design?

The inspiration came quite naturally. Each county of Leinster was to be

represented equally with their heraldic crests – instantly recognisable

symbols. I wanted to recount my own Leinster memories too. That

meant introducing the darker blue sleeves and the collegiate gold

detailing. To me, it’s a design that could be worn by players from any

generation, from O’Driscoll to Sexton.

How do you keep designs fresh year on year?

We work closely with clubs to find authentic and fresh stories. At

adidas, we also want to be at the forefront of performance technologies

and sustainability. So every year we work to combine the two.

Which design excited you the most?

On a professional level, I designed the Spanish national team kits for

the World Cup this season. The biggest sporting event there is. But,

on a personal level, being part of the first adidas Celtic jersey in 2020

and now seeing the framed Leinster kits in my parents’ home in Dublin

might just be level with the World Cup.

How does it feel to see your designs worn by thousands of fans?

Seeing your jersey enjoyed by fans is definitely one of the most

rewarding aspects of our jobs. Seeing people of all ages around Dublin

on game day. Outside the pubs and cafés around the RDS. It’s a real

pinch yourself moment for sure.


Newstead Building A,

UCD,

Belfield,

Dublin 4

#LEIVGLA

The Line up

Telephone:

012693224

Fax:

012693142

E-mail:

information@leinsterrugby.ie

www.leinsterrugby.ie

6

24

EXECUTIVE MANAGEMENT

President: Debbie Carty

Chief Executive: Michael Dawson

Honorary Secretary: Stuart Bayley

Honorary Treasurer: Michael McGrail

RUGBY MANAGEMENT

Head Coach: Leo Cullen

Senior Coach: Stuart Lancaster

Head of Rugby Operations:

Guy Easterby

Assistant Coach: Robin McBryde

Backs Coach: Andrew Goodman

Kicking Coach: Emmet Farrell

Contact Skills Coach: Seán O’Brien

14

PROGRAMME CREDITS

Editorial Team: Marcus Ó Buachalla,

Paul Cahill & Daniel Kelly

Advertising: Gary Nolan

Design: Julian Tredinnick,

Ignition Sports Media

Photography: Sportsfile

Chief Steward: Sword Security

Ambulance: St. John’s Ambulance

Medilink

Event Control & Safety Services:

Eamonn O’Boyle & Associates

62

86

STAY

CONNECTED

& KEEP

UP-TO-DATE

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 3


Debbie Carty welcome

PRESIDENT, LEINSTER RUGBY 2022/23

On behalf of Leinster Rugby, I would

like to welcome you all to the RDS

Arena for this afternoon’s match

against Glasgow Warriors in Round

8 of this season’s BKT United Rugby

Championship.

In particular, I wish to extend a

warm welcome to Dublin to our

Glaswegian visitors, to the squad,

their Head Coach, Franco Smith

and their management team and

hope you are enjoying your visit

here for this URC match.

Leinster have won their last seven

matches in the URC and I would like to

congratulate the Leinster squad captained

by Rhys Ruddock on their win over

Scarlets in Round 7 back in October.

As a result, Leinster have stretched their

lead in the competition to 12 points

and they will be confident heading

into tonight’s match, but we cannot be

complacent with the Glasgow Warriors

who have had three big wins in the

competition so we expect tonight to be a

challenging and physical match.

I have no doubt that Leo and his squad

are up for the challenge and we look

forward to the season ahead.

Having just finished up a successful

autumn internationals series where a

number of Leinster players both played

and captained the Irish squad, it is a

great time to be a Leinster and Ireland

supporter.

But the business end of the season is

still ahead and I know you will join me

in wishing Andy and his squad, every

success this season.

Before moving on from matters green,

I would like to personally congratulate

Tadhg Furlong, who hails from my own

home county of Wexford, on his recent

captaincy of the Irish team against Fiji.

What a lift a moment like that gives to all

of us down in the sunny south east and

to the clubs and to the player pathway

for youths. A great day and what an

ambassador he is.

On the domestic front, all competitions

are up and running. The Bank of Ireland

Leinster Leagues, the Energia AIL for

the men and the women and everything

in between have all kicked off as the

teams start the task of taking their squads

toward promotion from their divisions. It is

great to see most clubs fielding 2nd and

3rd teams this year. It promises to be an

exciting season ahead.

I am delighted to see that the first few

rounds of the Bank of Ireland Sarah

Robinson Cup is under way, with wins

for North Midlands over Midlands and

the Southeast over Metro. And we look

forward to the next few rounds of this

great competition in the months ahead.

On the interpros side, I look forward to

the Women’s Series in January and the

junior interpros that will also start their

campaign early in the new year.

I would like to welcome to the RDS

Arena this evening the mini rugby teams

who will play at half time in the Bank of

Ireland Mini Games. To the players from

Stillorgan-Rathfarnham RFC, North Meath

RFC, Kilkenny RFC and Navan RFC, the

very best of luck. I know you will all enjoy

the occasion. I would ask all supporters

to show your appreciation and cheer on

these young stars of the future.

Over the last few months, we have

lost two stalwarts of the game in

Leinster Rugby in Ken Ging and Paul

McNaughton. With the team of 2011

and 2012 being celebrated this

afternoon at half-time, I think it is fair to

say that much of the success in those

years and indeed since, was built on the

great work of people like Ken and Paul.

They, their families, and their friends,

remain in all our thoughts. May they rest

in peace.

To our title sponsor Bank of Ireland, great

patrons of both our professional and

domestic games, who along with all our

premium partners and suppliers, who do

so much to support Leinster Rugby, I offer

my sincere thanks.

Finally, to you the fans, our season ticket

holders, members of the Official Leinster

Supporters Club and friends of Leinster, I

thank you for the contribution you make

on match days.

I am sure this evening will be no different

as you get the roar going and the flags

waving to cheer on the boys in blue to

another victory.

Let us hope for an energetic, exciting and

injury free match tonight.

Debbie Carty

Leinster Rugby President 2022/23

4 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


to you the

fans, our season

ticket holders,

members of the

Official Leinster

Supporters Club

and friends of

Leinster, I thank

you for the

contribution

you make on

match days.

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 5


Leo Cullen

head Coach Welcome

A warm welcome back to the RDS Arena for

the start of another block of games in the

BKT United Rugby Championship.

I’d like to start by welcoming

Franco Smith and his Glasgow

Warriors team to Dublin. They

are no strangers to the RDS and

indeed have some more than

familiar faces in the backroom

team with former Leinster staff

members Cillian Reardon and

Robin Reidy very welcome back

to the RDS this afternoon.

There is also the small matter of a reunion

today for the Heineken Cup winning

squads of 2011 and 2012.

Unfortunately I will have other matters

to attend to, but I do hope they have

an enjoyable catch-up and that the

team, squad and backroom staff get the

ovation they all deserve at half-time when

introduced to the crowd.

Those were special times with a special

group of people.

It was very satisfying to start the season

so strongly and to remain unbeaten in the

opening block but as we all know, you

are only as strong or as good as your

last game, and for us all that we have

achieved so far will be for nothing if we

don’t build on that foundation.

That starts with this evening’s game

against Glasgow.

Last week was an excellent run-out

against Chile and I’d like to acknowledge

most sincerely the efforts of the five

Energia AIL club players that came in and

trained with us and played against Chile.

Unfortunately, Harrison Brewer was

unable to play on the Friday as he

picked up a knock, but the other four

lads acquitted themselves very well over

the 80 minutes and I wish Cormac Daly,

Conall Boomer, Thomas Connolly and

Colm Hogan the best of luck with the

rest of their seasons as they return to

their clubs, Terenure, Clontarf and Dublin

University FC.

The player pathway in Leinster Rugby

is never linear and there are plenty of

examples of players taking a different

path over the years and we are always

keeping an eye on players performing

week in, week out in the AIL, and that will

continue to be the case.

Well done to Ben Brownlee, Charlie

Tector and Tadgh McElroy, who all

featured in our last outing against

Scarlets.

Those three have all come through the

Leinster pathway in some form, and each

one has a different story to tell about

how they got to this point. It was a really

happy dressing room over in Wales the

night the three lads featured; the sort of

occasion that all staff and players get a

kick out of.

Over the last few weeks, we have also

had the pleasure of a visit to Tullow RFC

where the local club players trained with

us over the course of the day and where

we also had an open training session in

front of local supporters.

Thank you to all in Tullow for a very

warm welcome.

While he may be retired now, there is no

doubt, who the main man in Tullow is.

What a reaction and reception for Seán

O’Brien. And for us all. Adding to the 12

county tour from the summer, it was great

to be out and about again.

Keep an eye out for our next pitstop!

Well done to Ireland on a successful

Bank of Ireland autumn international

series, and for cementing our position

as the top-ranked team in world rugby.

All of us here at Leinster take huge

pride in seeing our players represent

Ireland and we were thrilled to see

Jimmy O’Brien make his Irish debut

against the world champion

Springboks a few weeks back.

Also to Joe McCarthy, who made

his debut against Australia. What

a brilliant year it has been for

Joe. He only made his Leinster

debut in January and ten months

later has been capped by his

country. A proud day.

And we also now have a

Georgian international amongst

us. Well done to Vakh Abdaladze

on making his international debut in

what would have been a hugely proud

day for him and his family. Vakh’s father

also played for Georgia and I know how

much it meant to them all.

6 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


Finally, well done to Josh van der Flier.

It is a magnificent achievement to

become only the third Irish player ever

to receive the World Rugby Player of

the Year Award. Josh is one of the most

humble and hard working players you

could every hope to coach. He is also a

gentleman and we were all thrilled for

him.

He deserves the recognition after a

stellar year, but like us all, I know that

Josh still has plenty that he wants to

achieve this season and beyond and

he’ll be focused on that when he joins

back with us next week.

Thanks as always to our loyal sponsors,

especially Bank of Ireland, who like

our supporters are with us through thick

and thin. We wouldn’t be where we

are without you. DigitalWell is the latest

organisation to join the Leinster family

and we are delighted to have them on

board.

Welcome also to Shane Nolan, who

takes over as Leinster Rugby CEO, with

today his first formal game at the helm.

We are really excited to start working

with Shane and I know he has some

great ideas on how to grow the club.

Shane takes over from Mick Dawson,

who has been such a pillar of support to

us all, myself included, for many years

– we wish Mick and his family all the

best in retirement, and hope he enjoys

much success with Lansdowne FC in his

Presidential year.

Speaking of great Leinster supporters, we

were all saddened to hear of the recent

passing of Paul McNaughton.

A multi-talented sportsman himself, Paul

served as Leinster and Ireland manager

during a successful professional era that

included Ireland’s 2009 Grand Slam.

He was a great servant to Leinster with a

wonderful perspective on life and rugby,

and he’ll be sadly missed. Our thoughts

go out to the McNaughton family.

Looking ahead, we can’t wait to get

back into action for what will be a

hectic schedule of club and provincial

rugby over the Christmas period.

The second half of the season is

when everything is up for grabs, and

as a group, we are intent on creating

lots more memorable moments on the

pitch for you to enjoy.

But first, our attention is very much on

Glasgow and the significant threat

that they pose. It will be a battling

and bruising afternoon but I know that

we will have your support behind us

every step of the way.

Enjoy the game,

Leo

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 7


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laura

lynch

BANK OF IRELAND

CHIEF MARKETING OFFICER

A very warm

welcome to the RDS

Arena from Bank

of Ireland as we

look forward to

this afternoon’s

fixture.

Bank of Ireland are proud partners to Leinster

Rugby. Like us, they are rooted in local communities

across the 12 counties of Leinster.

We are delighted to support Leo Cullen and his coaching

team in building Leinster Rugby through clubs and schools,

developing home grown talent and always ensuring that

Leinster #NeverStopCompeting.

Much of that amazing talent will be on display on the pitch this

afternoon.

We wish Leinster Rugby every success, and hope that you

enjoy the game.

Laura Lynch.

BANK OF IRELAND

CHIEF MARKETING OFFICER

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 9


Did you

know?

Leinster Rugby have won

their last seven BKT United

Rugby Championship matches

since they were knocked out

of last season’s competition

at the semi-final stage at

home to the Bulls. That

defeat is the Leinstermen’s

solitary loss at the RDS

Arena in the last twelve

months.

• The Leinstermen have lost

just once to a Scottish

opponent since April 2019:

12-15 at Scotstoun in the

Rainbow Cup in June 2021.

Glasgow Warriors’ record

so far this season in the BKT

United Rugby Championship

is three home wins and three

away defeats.

• The Warriors have not

won away from home in the

Championship since a visit

to Connacht on 29 January.

Glasgow’s record against

Irish provinces last season

was won two, lost three.

Leinster have lost just

one of their last eight

encounters with Glasgow.

• The Warriors have won

just twice at the RDS Arena,

in September 2011 and April

2019.

COMPARISON

Overall URC head-to-head record:

Played 44, Leinster won 28, Glasgow won 14 with 2 matches drawn.

Last 3 URC results:

14 Oct - Connacht (A) W 10-0 8 Oct - Bulls (H) W 35-21

22 Oct - Munster (H) W 27-13 15 Oct - Sharks (A) L 12-40

28 Oct - Scarlets (A) W 35-5 28 Oct - Benetton (H) W 37-0

1ST - W7 D0 L0 - 33PTS

WWWWWW (28pts)

URC 2022/23

URC form

Top try scorer

7TH - W3 D0 L3 - 15PTS

LWLWLW (15pts)

6 - Dan Sheehan 4 - Tom Gordon

Top points scorer

32 - Ross Byrne 38 - George Horne

Date Venue L G Leinster scorers Glasgow scorers

Fri 28 Feb 20 RDS Arena 55 19 James Lowe(2T) Ciaran Frawley(2C) Harry

Byrne(3C) Scott Fardy(T) Ryan Baird(3T)

Dave Kearney(3T)

Mon 2 Nov

20

Sun 28 Feb

21

Fri 4 Jun 21

Scotstoun Stadium 32 19 Michael Bent(T) Harry Byrne(3C/2P) Scott

Penny(T) Luke McGrath(T) Jimmy O'Brien(T)

RDS Arena 40 21 Harry Byrne(T/2C) Scott Penny(2T) David

Hawkshaw(2C) Cian Kelleher(T) Luke

McGrath(T) Penalty Try(T)

Scotstoun Stadium

(RC)

12 15 Ross Byrne(C) Cian Kelleher(T) Luke

McGrath(T)

Fri 22 Oct 21 Scotstoun Stadium 31 15 Adam Byrne(T) Ross Byrne(4C/P) Ronan

Kelleher(T) Dan Sheehan(T) Hugo

Keenan(T)

Sat 4 Jun 22 RDS Arena (QF) 76 14 Ross Byrne(6C) Ciaran Frawley(T) Harry

Byrne(2C) Joe McCarthy(T) Michael

Ala'alatoa(T) Jamison Gibson-Park(T)

Garry Ringrose(T) Caelan Doris(T) Jordan

Larmour(2T) Luke McGrath(T) Dan

Sheehan(2T) Jimmy O'Brien(T)

Pete Horne(C) Kyle Steyn(T) Alex Allan(T)

Tommy Seymour(T) Ruaridh Jackson(C)

Pete Horne(2C) George Horne(T) Tom

Gordon(T) D'arcy Rae(T)

Huw Jones(T) Adam Hastings(C)

Rufus McLean(T) Tom Gordon(T) Ross

Thompson(2C)

Kyle Steyn(T) Matt Fagerson(T) Ross

Thompson(C/P)

Lewis Bean(T) Jack Dempsey(T) Ross

Thompson(C/P)

George Horne(T) Zander Fagerson(T) Ross

Thompson(2C)

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 13


14 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


Ross

Byrne

the big interview

BY DANIEL KELLY

Ross Byrne is

still on a high

after “one

of the most

bizarre weeks”

of his career

last week.

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 15


On the Monday, he was training

in Belfield with Leinster as

preparations began for the

friendly with Chile, and today’s

match with Glasgow Warriors.

Off the pitch, Byrne was also getting the

final touches ready to launch his new

business Starfolio.

The week ended with him winning his

14th Ireland cap, and kicking the winning

points in a packed Aviva Stadium against

Australia, to conclude Ireland’s Bank of

Ireland Autumn Internationals..

“It was all a bit strange in how it played

out, to be honest”, Byrne admitted, earlier

this week.

“I finished training with Leinster on

Monday, and got the call from Andy

Farrell to come in as cover for the week. I

went into camp that night. It was all about

trying to get up to speed as quickly as

possible. I’d been out of the setup for a

while. Monday night and Tuesday were

hectic - It was all about trying to learn

everything again.

“A lot of the calls hadn’t changed. But I

hadn’t been there in a while, so there was

a lot of learning. Thankfully there were so

many Leinster lads in there, that gave me

a helping hand too. Some of the stuff is

similar, but a lot of the week was mental

preparation and learning plays”

Johnny Sexton was named to start the

game at fly-half against the Wallabies,

with Munster’s Jack Crowley named on

the bench.

Byrne was to miss out on winning cap

number 14, but he would still be part of

the matchday preparations. That was

until his Leinster teammate pulled up in

the warmup, and Byrne moved up to the

bench.

“I was there as the 24th man. During the

warmup, I was told I was on the bench.

Overall, it was unexpected, but a very

enjoyable end to the week.

“Even though I wasn’t originally selected,

you still need to prepare. It’s happened

before in Leinster where players drop out.

We have a saying that everyone should

always be ready.”

16 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


It’s happened

before in Leinster

where players

drop out. We have

a saying that

everyone should

always be ready.

Although the situation may seem unusual,

Byrne’s previous time in green came in

similar circumstances, but he did have a

little more notice.

“Funnily enough, my last cap against

England, I was 24th man too, and got

called in on the morning of the game.

I came on for a minute that afternoon,

and I don’t even think I got a touch of the

ball. I can’t think of any time I ever got

called into a team in the warmup, like last

weekend though.”

After more than 18-months in the

international wilderness, the 27-year-old

was delighted to get the opportunity

to impress in front of a packed Aviva

Stadium - a marked contrast to his

previous cap which was played behind

closed doors.

“It was polar opposites to be honest.

There are times when there are

doubts, and there were times

where I never thought I’d play

for Ireland again. To get the

opportunity to do so last week was

incredibly special. The way it finished is

something I’ll never forget.”

Such was the lateness of Sexton’s

withdrawal, eagle-eyed viewers noticed

that Crowley was wearing a jersey with

Sexton’s name embroidered on it.

Byrne ended up with the same fate,

wearing Crowley’s number 22.

Despite that, it will remain one of his most

memorable pieces of memorabilia for

years to come, joking “it’s one I

won’t be giving away anyways”.

Byrne has been an everpresent

for Leinster this season,

playing in all seven games so

far in the BKT United Rugby

Championship.

Those seven games have

brought seven wins, but despite

that he feels there is still room to

improve.

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 17


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It’s important to create an

environment where fans all

over Leinster want to come to

games. We want to make them

proud, but also to make sure

they’re entertained too.

“It’s been a great start. To win every

game is great, but we have not had a

complete performance yet. We have

played really well at times, but there were

also occasions where we have been

disappointed in ourselves.”

“We’re incredibly lucky with the depth

we have in the squad. In the next few

weeks, we could have two international

XVs facing each other in training. It’s

brilliant from a competitive point of view.

“In the Scarlets game, we had so many

young lads take their chance. So many

were waiting for their opportunity in that

game, and they took it.”

Before he entered camp with Ireland,

Byrne visited Dundalk RFC Minis and

was part of the open training session in

Tullow RFC.

He was delighted to get out and about

and see fans outside of the UCD and

RDS Arena environs.

“It was great to see so many people in

Tullow. Seán O’Brien told us how much

Tullow RFC means to him, and how much

Leinster means to those in Tullow. We

loved having some of the Tullow team

train with us too.

“Nick McCarthy and I went to Dundalk

to the Minis. We saw how much Leinster

means to that club too. It’s so important

going to these clubs. We want these

people to come to matches in the RDS or

the Aviva. Having them there makes such

a difference to the players.”

Byrne has seen a marked change in

atmosphere at home games this season

too, and cites that down to fans returning

in their masses, after the pandemic.

“During Covid, when nobody was at

games - it was a real shock. This season,

the support has been the best I’ve seen

in the RDS. Nearly every game has

been sold out, and the atmosphere has

been great, before, during and after the

games.

“It’s important to create an environment

where fans all over Leinster want to come

to games. We want to make them proud,

but also to make sure they’re entertained

too.”

The relationship between the players

and fans was weakened during Covid,

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 19


ut Ross sees this season as a terrific

opportunity to make that better than it

ever has been.

“It was awful, playing in front of nobody.

“It’s only natural that relationships break

down because of that. It’s so important

to get that relationship back and to build

on it. Leinster has been in a very strong

position in the past few years. We have

shown we are one of the best teams in

Europe.

“We have won silverware recently, and

we want to win more and give supporters

the day out that they deserve.

“Going to go to places like Tullow and

Dundalk and the 12 County Tour in preseason

shows how important the support

is to us. If it means we get a few new

supporters, that’s even better.”

Today’s match marks a nice milestone

for Byrne as it’s his 100th appearance in

the URC, and his ninth against Glasgow

Warriors in the competition.

The Scottish team started Round 8 in

seventh place, although they have played

one game less than Leinster.

20 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


Glasgow are always incredibly

competitive. They’re dangerous going

forward, as we saw before the Autumn

Internationals against Benetton. They won

that match 37-0.

“Before that, they played really good

stuff, especially against the South African

teams.”

As Byrne was taking part in the Captains’

Run in the Aviva Stadium last Friday

Young kids

growing up

want to be part

of the success

Leinster has

had. The work

in the underage

systems has

been brilliant.

afternoon ahead of the Australia match,

Leinster were in action, just over 1,500

metres away in Energia Park against

Chile.

Charlie Tector was among those to

feature, having made his debut against

Scarlets, replacing Byrne.

Tector (a product of Enniscorthy RFC but

now plying his trade with Lansdowne,

like the younger Byrne brother, Harry) is

one of the latest in a long line of players

to come through the Academy, and

Byrne knows the younger generation will

continue to keep the senior players on

their toes.

“We’re blessed in a number of positions.

“All across the pitch, there can be three,

four or five options. Young kids growing

up want to be part of the success Leinster

has had. The work in the underage

systems has been brilliant.”

After the ‘bizarre’ nature of last week,

preparations will have been a little more

straightforward this week for Byrne as the

URC resumes.

Whatever happens today on the pitch,

he’ll be ready for it.

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 21


35 5FRIDAY 28 OCTOBER 2022

Action

replay

PARC Y SCARLETS

REFEREE: ANDREA PIARDI (FIR)

ATTENDANCE: 6,823

BKT UNITED RUGBY CHAMPIONSHIP

SCARLETS:

McNicholl; Rogers, Steff Evans, J. Davies

(capt), Conbeer; Jones, G. Davies; Thomas,

D. Hughes, O’Connor; J. Price, T. Price;

Shingler, Thomas, Kalamafoni.

REPLACEMENTS:

Shaun Evans, Mathias, John, Jones, Shenton,

A. Hughes, Patchell, Baldwin.

TRY:

Steff Evans

LEINSTER:

Cosgrave; Russell, Turner, Ngatai, Kearney,

Byrne, McGrath; Byrne, McKee, Clarkson;

Molony, Jenkins; Ruddock (capt), Penny,

Deegan.

REPLACEMENTS:

McElroy, Milne, Abdaladze, Deeney,

Moloney, McCarthy, Tector, Brownlee.

TRIES:

Cosgrave, Russell, Clarkson, Penalty 2

CONVERSIONS:

Byrne 3

22 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


Rhys Ruddock and Ross Byrne

were immense in the way they led

the group, but then we had some

young guys coming off the bench

to make their Leinster debuts,

which is always fantastic to see.

When you see guys getting their

first caps from their teammates

in the dressing room, that’s what

makes it so pleasing. Hopefully

there are lots more good things

to come from those young guys.

Leo Cullen

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 23


No High Tackles - Just

High Heels at Dundalk RFC!

BY MARY MURDOCK

Dundalk RFC has had many

defining moments in its club

history but one which set it apart

was when the club came together

with the Leinster Northeast rugby

family in February 2019 to honour

the memory and to celebrate

the life of one of their Dundalk

RFC ladies, Caroline Gray; wife

of Dundalk RFC senior player

Jonathan, who lost her battle with

breast cancer in September 2018.

Dundalk RFC then began their journey

as a club to tackle breast cancer, forging

links with the National Breast Cancer

Research Institute.

Dundalk RFC took that journey a step

further this year with the “No High

Tackles, Just High Heels” ladies event

held on Saturday, 4 June 2022.

The event, which had been sold out since

2020, but had been delayed by the

pandemic, was a resounding success.

Dundalk RFC received great support from

both Leinster Rugby and the IRFU, and

were honoured to be joined by the Head

Coach to the Irish Women’s Rugby Team

Greg McWilliams as their special guest.

This event, while celebrating Dundalk

RFC ladies, was also dedicated to the

memories of those rugby ladies who have

lost the battle against breast cancer and

to those who courageously continue the

fight.

The Dundalk RFC ladies event was one

of the club’s major events of the 2022

rugby season.

By linking with the National Breast

Cancer Research Institute, Dundalk RFC

have supported a research team who

are successfully working on improving

breast cancer diagnosis and treatment.

All of these programmes are technically

demanding and expensive so the support

of the public is significant.

It was Dundalk’s desire to host an event

in celebration and in appreciation of all

ladies with an association to the club

and of the Dundalk RFC girls who have

continued to develop their game and

worn the jersey with such passion, desire

and pride. This event saluted them as the

club recognised their contribution both on

and off the pitch at Mill Road.

“No High Tackles, Just High Heels” was

one of the most stylish and glamorous

events in town for many years, as the

ladies of the Northeast set the bar very

high in the style stakes leaving everyone

in no doubt that there are two sides to a

rugby girl!

The afternoon was kicked off by a very

stylish MC Caroline McElroy who did a

superb job, with the moments beautifully

captured by photographer Caroline

Kerley.

The event started with a drinks reception

to the fabulous sound of An Cór

Chairlinne and local artists Maria

Dawe and Anna McKenna. This was

followed by a four course lunch and a

fashion show with former Dundalk RFC

youth players, Maria Smith, Eleanor

McElroy, Sophia Murdock, Aoife Purcell

and Jennifer McElroy, all taking to the

catwalk with the latest fashion from local

boutiques.

John McKevitt, President of Dundalk RFC,

had opened the proceedings to welcome

those gathered at The Fairways Hotel

and to thank them for their support.

Greg McWilliams, Ireland Women’s

Rugby XV Head Coach, captured the

hearts of all present with his emotive

account of his adored wife’s breast

cancer journey and its impact on their

lives and his passionate vision of his drive

to achieve success with the Irish Women’s

rugby team.

Mary Murdock from Dundalk RFC then

shared her involvement in the Caroline

Gray Memorial Event and identified the

event as a significant step on the journey

of Dundalk RFC to tackle breast cancer.

She spoke passionately of the investment

at grassroots level of Dundalk RFC in the

girls game and paid tribute to the female

players coming through the club.

Mary also acknowledged the

significance to Dundalk RFC of having

the family of the late Caroline Gray

present as she remembered her and she

paid tribute to another amazing woman

Cara McAdam who was also present as

24 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


she recognised the success she and her

husband Niall Carroll had achieved since

they started 100km in 30 Days to support

breast cancer research.

She thanked all who had bought

tickets, donated raffle prizes and given

sponsorship for this event. She gave a

special mention to Pat O’Callaghan,

Denis Williams and The Fairways Hotel

Team for their very generous sponsorship,

support and attention to detail in the

planning of this event and she thanked

the Dundalk RFC Executive Committee

for their support and the team behind

the mega event who made it happen

alongside her.

Linda Valentine, a former Dundalk RFC

girls coach was announced as the “No

High Tackles, Best Dressed Lady 2022”

with the winning ensemble from Rapport

Boutique Dundalk.

Her prize was presented to her by

Dundalk RFC U18 players Aoife Purcell

and Jennifer McElroy.

There was a monster raffle with fabulous

prizes kindly donated by local sponsors

as well as a silent auction for an amazing

coaching session for 20 children, very

kindly donated by local Leinster and

Ireland rugby legends and former

Dundalk RFC minis players, Rob and

Dave Kearney.

The evening finished off with music from

the very talented Cian McKeever and DJ

Goosey spinning discs into the late hours

to end the perfect day.

If you are

interested in

taking up rugby

or you would like

to follow our

updates, check out

our social media

channels:

Leinster Women

LeinsterWomens

@LeinsterWomen

womenspro@leinsterrugby.ie

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 25


© 2022 adidas AG


leo

the lion’s

kids

corner

ANAGRAMS

Can you un-jumble

the names of these

academy players?

NEARLY

MINT MOO

TRACK MY

CINCH

spot the difference!

Can you find all six?

zoomed in!

WHo is this leinster player

having an extreme close-up?

how did you do?

ANAGRAMS

Martin Moloney, Nick McCarthy

ZOOMED IN!

Tommy O’Brien

a...

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28 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


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AZTO

with

John McKee

A – Action: If you could be a superhero,

which would you be?

Dr Strange

B – Boyhood: Who was your favourite

sporting idol growing up?

Cian Healy

C – Childhood: What is your favourite

childhood memory?

Holidaying with family in Portugal

D – Dish: What’s your go-to pre-match

meal?

Plain ham and cheese pasta. No

sauce.

E – Education: What was your favourite

subject in school?

English literature

F – Film buff: What’s your favourite film?

A Star is Born

G – Groove: Who is the best dancer in

the squad?

Martin Moloney

H – Holiday: What’s your favourite

holiday destination?

The Algarve, Portugal

I – Inside: Who is the worst to sit beside

in the dressing room?

Martin Moloney

J – Joker: Who is the funniest in the

squad?

Max O’Reilly

K – Kick-off: What’s your favourite time

of the day to play a match?

Late afternoon

L – Languages: How many languages

can you speak?

One…maybe one and a half with very

little Spanish

M – Music: Your favourite artist and

song right now?

The Stone Roses:

I Wanna Be Adored

30 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


N – Number: Do you have a lucky

number?

None, 13 if I had to choose.

O – Others: What’s your favourite

sport outside of rugby?

Golf, cycling and judo

P – Pal: Who is your best mate in

the squad?

Can’t offend anyone! So I’ll stay

quiet on that.

Q – Quirky: Who has the most

interesting fashion sense?

Martin Moloney

R – Red Carpet: Who is the most

famous contact in your phone?

Sir Dave Fagan

S – Superstitions: Do you have

any matchday routines?

None!

T – Trim: What’s the worst haircut

you’ve ever had?

The one I had last year! The long

hair!

U: Under pressure: Who in the

squad would be the best in a bad

situation?

Charlie ‘Chuck’ Ryan

V – Verified: How often do you

use social media?

Too often! Delete it every so

often.

W – Worst fear: What are you

most scared of?

Tom Clarkson. When he’s

hungry

X – X-ray: Have you ever broken

any bones?

Collar bone and wrist.

Y – Youth: Where did you grow

up?

Belfast

Z – Zoo: What’s your favourite

animal?

Dogs

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 31


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A Towns Cup to Savour

BY DEBBIE CARTY

Kilkenny RFC are a

provincial club with a

strong tradition.

The club is located in Foulkstown,

on the outskirts of the city and

in the heart of hurling country.

Despite this, rugby is thriving in

the marble city, with almost 600

members and modern facilities,

the club is well prepared for

future success.

2022 was the year for the county's

rugby club to fly the flag of success

for the county, successfully bridging a

20-year gap to regain possession of the

most unique and coveted junior rugby

competition in Ireland, the Bank of

Ireland Provincial Towns Cup.

Under the mentorship of head coach

Steve Ashmore, the club had come up

short on two occasions, in 2014 and

2015, losing both by narrow margins.

The pain of these losses can still be felt

amongst the playing group, but the

lessons from the losses made them better

value in victory. Ashmore departed the

club in 2017 to explore other coaching

opportunities, but his philosophy and

blueprint remained.

Fast forward five seasons, player coach

David O'Connor worked tirelessly

to assemble a cohort of players and

coaching staff that could put Kilkenny

back in contention for provincial

silverware.

Ironically, this included the return of

the aforementioned Steve Ashmore as

senior coach. Eamonn Dooley and Ray

Pembroke came in as team managers

with John Buckley added to the ticket

as assistant coach and Mark Coughlan

was appointed as team administrator.

The squad was bolstered throughout,

with focus on bringing home grown

players back to the club. This saw the

return of utility back Hugh Corkery from

UL Bohemian, Andrew Warner from

Old Wesley and Aiden McDonald from

Cashel, while import Jake Pratley also

joined.

After a bye in the opening round, they

beat Edenderry in a typically tough battle

in Coolavacoose. Next up was a tricky

quarter-final draw at home to old rivals

Carlow, who are coached by Corey

Carty, son of current Leinster Rugby

President, Debbie. Luckily, the Noresiders

got the home draw. Played in warm

conditions the match was a quintessential

cup tie. Kilkenny came out on top in a

fiercely contested game. A semi-final

against Dundalk awaited.

Played in Foutnaughts, home of Naas

RFC, Kilkenny raced into an early lead,

but a resilient Dundalk chipped away to

make it a real contest. In the final play of

the game, Kilkenny's Podge Mahon, just

managed to hold up a certain try and by

the skin of their teeth the cats were back

in the Provincial Towns Cup Final.

With the experience of 2014 and 2015

finals tucked away, and the methodical

approach of Dave O'Connor and Steve

Ashmore now to the fore, Kilkenny had a

steely focus in their preparations.

Ashbourne, the same side who beat them

in 2014, were their final opponents but

they were no match for Kilkenny as they

beat their old foes 32-06 to banish the

ghosts of 2014 and 2015.


The successful cup campaign was built

on a strong foundation of club spirit and

player commitment.

The majority of the squad, 15 players,

came through the club's youth system,

this included recent graduates Hugh

Corkery, Jack Walsh, Lyndon Brannigan,

Ben Devlin, Jake McDonald and Aiden

McDonald, who all came through

from the same U-18s team, which was

coached by the club's Director of Rugby

Ger McDonald.

Additionally, the side contained five

Leinster Junior players, Davie O'Connor,

Liam Caddy, Podge Mahon, Wes Carter

and team captain Jake McDonald, with

Connacht Junior Roy Stanley playing at

blindside.

The side had a strong Munster

influence throughout. Interestingly, with

consideration for today's opponents,

Kilkenny has a tradition with the southern

province, with Ian Dowling coming

through the clubs youth system and

Mick Galwey playing two seasons with

the club after his retirement from the

professional game.

Additionally, past presidents include Mick

O'Donovan, originally from Glandors in

Co. Cork and Vinny O'Shea originally

from Kinsale and ex-Munster and

Waterpark legend John O'Neill both

played and coached the club.

The tradition remains today, assistant

coach John Buckley originally hails from

Limerick, and played his club rugby with

Richmond, Simon O'Hara, Waterford

City, Shane O'Riordan, Muskerry RFC

and Sundays Well legend, Joe Moynihan

all played important roles in the historic

2022 win.

For Kilkenny, the cup win is now in the

past but the names of the squad will go

down in Kilkenny sporting history for

generations to come to aspire to.

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 35


leinster

squad 2022/23

season

Vakhtang Abdaladze #1263

Prop

DOB 6 Feb 1996

HEIGHT 1.85m (6’ 1”)

WEIGHT 121kg (19st 1 lb)

1

CAP

Michael Ala’alatoa #1301

12

CAPS

Prop

DOB 28 August 1991

HEIGHT 1.91m (6’ 3”)

WEIGHT 126kg (19st 11lbs)

Ryan Baird #1278

Second Row

DOB 26 July 1999

HEIGHT 1.98m (6’ 6”)

WEIGHT 113kg (17st 9lbs)

8

CAPS

Ed Byrne #1222

Prop

DOB 9 September 1993

HEIGHT 1.80m (5’ 11”)

WEIGHT 115kg (18st)

6

CAP

Harry Byrne #1280

2

CAPS

Outhalf

DOB 22 April 1999

HEIGHT 1.91m (6’ 3”)

WEIGHT 95kg (14st 11lbs)

Ross Byrne #1236

Out-half

DOB 8 April 1995

HEIGHT 1.91m (6’ 3”)

WEIGHT 92kg (14st 5lbs)

14

CAPS

Thomas Clarkson #1285

Prop

DOB 22 February 2000

HEIGHT 1.85m (6’ 1”)

WEIGHT 118kg (18st 7lbs)

Jack Conan #1223

33

CAPS

7

CAPS

No 8

DOB 29 July 1992

HEIGHT 1.93m (6’ 4”)

WEIGHT 110kg (17st 4 lbs)

36 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


Will Connors #1264

9

CAPS

Max Deegan #1256

2

CAPS

Brian Deeny #1306

Caelan Doris #1268

23

CAPS

Back Row

DOB 4 April 1996

HEIGHT 1.96 (6’ 5”)

WEIGHT 99kg (15st 8lbs)

No 8

DOB 1 October 1996

HEIGHT 1.93m (6’ 4”)

WEIGHT 110kg (17st 4lbs)

Second Row

DOB 2 March 2000

HEIGHT 1.99m (6’ 6”)

WEIGHT 118kg (18st 8lbs)

Back Row

DOB 2 April 1998

HEIGHT 1.94m (6’ 4”)

WEIGHT 106kg (16st 10lbs)

Cormac Foley #1299

Scrum-half

DOB 24 October 1999

HEIGHT 1.81m (5’ 11 ”)

WEIGHT 90kg (14 st 2 lbs)

Ciarán Frawley #1265

Out-half

DOB 4 December 1997

HEIGHT 1.92m (6’ 3”)

WEIGHT 98kg (15st 5lbs)

Tadhg Furlong #1220

63

CAPS

13

CAPS

Prop

DOB 14 November 1992

HEIGHT 1.85m (6’ 1”)

WEIGHT 125kg (19st 8lbs)

Jamison Gibson-Park #1247

Scrum-half

DOB 23 February 1992

HEIGHT 1.76m (5’ 9”)

WEIGHT 80kg (12st 8lbs)

23

CAPS

Cian Healy #1142

121

CAPS

2

CAPS

Robbie Henshaw #1251

61

CAPS

9

CAPS

Jason Jenkins #1310

1

CAP

Dave Kearney #1158

19

CAPS

Prop

DOB 7 October 1987

HEIGHT 1.85m (6’ 1”)

WEIGHT 116kg (18st 4lbs)

Centre / Full Back

DOB 12 June 1993

HEIGHT 1.91m (6’ 3”)

WEIGHT 99kg (15st 8lbs)

Lock

DOB 2 December 1995

HEIGHT 2.03 m (6’ 8”)

WEIGHT 124kg (19st 5lbs)

Wing / Full Back

DOB 19 June 1989

HEIGHT 1.81m (5’ 11”)

WEIGHT 90kg (14st 2lbs)

Hugo Keenan #1253

25

CAPS

Rónan Kelleher #1277

18

CAPS

Jordan Larmour #1258

30

CAPS

James Lowe #1262

15

CAPS

Full Back

DOB 18 June 1996

HEIGHT 1.85m (6’ 1”)

WEIGHT 92kg (14st 4lbs)

Hooker

DOB 24 January 1998

HEIGHT 1.85m (6’ 0”)

WEIGHT 110kg (17st 5lbs)

Wing

DOB 10 June 1997

HEIGHT 1.78m (5’ 10”)

WEIGHT 88kg (13st 12lbs)

Wing / Full Back

DOB 8 July 1992

HEIGHT 1.88m (6’ 2”)

WEIGHT 105kg (16st 7lbs)

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 37


Joe McCarthy #1303

1

CAP

Nick McCarthy #1241

Tadgh McElroy #1312

Luke McGrath #1206

19

CAPS

Second Row

DOB 26 March 2001

HEIGHT 1.98m (6’ 6”)

WEIGHT 119kg (18st 8lbs)

Scrum Half

DOB 25 March 1995

HEIGHT 1.8m (5’ 11”)

WEIGHT 84kg (13st 3lbs)

Hooker

DOB 16 June1997

HEIGHT 1.78m (5’ 10’)

WEIGHT 103kg (16st, 2lbs)

Scrum Half

DOB 3 February 1993

HEIGHT 1.75m (5’ 9”)

WEIGHT 82kg (12st 12lbs)

Michael Milne #1279

Martin Moloney #1300

Ross Molony #1233

Charlie Ngatai #1311

1

CAP

Prop

DOB 5 February 1999

HEIGHT 1.83m (6’ 0”)

WEIGHT 115kg (18st 1lbs)

Back Row

DOB 19 October 1999

HEIGHT 1.88m (6’ 2”)

WEIGHT 104kg (16st 5lbs)

Lock

DOB 11 May 1994

HEIGHT 2.00m (6’ 6”)

WEIGHT 116kg (18st 4lbs)

Centre / Full Back

DOB 17 August 1990

HEIGHT 1.87 m (6’ 2”)

WEIGHT 102kg (16st 1lbs)

Jimmy O’Brien #1272

3

CAPS

Tommy O’Brien #1283

Jamie Osborne #1294

Scott Penny #1271

Back Three

DOB 27 November 1996

HEIGHT 1.84m (6’ 0”)

WEIGHT 89kg (14st 0lbs)

Wing

DOB 28 May 1998

HEIGHT 1.83m (6’ 0”)

WEIGHT 95kg (14st 3lbs)

Centre

DOB 16 November 2001

HEIGHT 1.93m (6’ 4”)

WEIGHT 97.5kg (15st 5lbs)

Flanker

DOB 22 September 1999

HEIGHT 1.85m (6’ 1”)

WEIGHT 104kg (16st 4lbs)

Andrew Porter #1246

48

CAPS

Garry Ringrose #1237

47

CAPS

Rhys Ruddock #1167

27

CAPS

Charlie Ryan

Prop

DOB 16 January 1996

HEIGHT 1.84m (6’ 1”)

WEIGHT 114kg (17st 13lbs)

Centre

DOB 26 January 1995

HEIGHT 1.87m (6’ 2”)

WEIGHT 96kg (15st 1lbs)

Back Row

DOB 13 November 1990

HEIGHT 1.91m (6’ 3”)

WEIGHT 113kg (17st 9lbs)

Lock

DOB 3 February 1999

HEIGHT 2.01m (6’ 7”)

WEIGHT 115kg (18st 1lbs)

38 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


James Ryan #1259

48

CAPS

Johnny Sexton #1127

109

CAPS

14

CAPS

Dan Sheehan #1286

13

CAPS

James Tracy #1211

6

CAPS

Lock

DOB 24 July 1996

HEIGHT 2.00m (6’ 7”)

WEIGHT 115kg (18st 1lbs)

Out-half

DOB 11 July 1985

HEIGHT 1.88m (6’ 2”)

WEIGHT 90kg (14st 2lbs)

Hooker

DOB 17 September 1998

HEIGHT 1.91m (6’ 3”)

WEIGHT 110kg (17st 5lbs)

Hooker

DOB 2 April 1991

HEIGHT 1.85m (6’ 1”)

WEIGHT 106kg (16st 9lbs)

Liam Turner #1287

Centre

DOB 14 July 1999

HEIGHT 1.73m (5’ 8”)

WEIGHT 93kg (14st 9lbs)

Josh van der Flier #1228

45

CAPS

Flanker

DOB 25 April 1993

HEIGHT 1.87m (6’ 2”)

WEIGHT 103kg (16st 3lbs)

for full squad profiles

please scan this qr code

Coaching

Staff 2022/23

Stuart

Lancaster

Senior Coach

season

Leo Cullen

Head

Coach

Emmet

Farrell

Kicking Coach and

Lead Performance Analyst

Robin

McBryde

Assistant Coach

SEÁN

O’BRIEN

CONTACT SKILLS Coach

ANDREW

GOODMAN

ASSISTANT COACH

Guy

Easterby

Head of Rugby Operations

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 39


We always strive to be

A beat ahead

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The Irish Times is proud to be official media partner to Leinster Rugby.

With unparalleled rugby coverage we look forward to keeping you up to

date with everything on and off the field in the 2022/23 season.


Your Club

Your Country

The IRFU Your Club Your Country

Draw is back. This is the 12th

consecutive year that the draw

has been run. As ever, there are

lots ofgreat prizes to be won.

All prizes are funded by IRFU

sponsors, and with 100% of the

funds raised through ticket sales

going to the selling clubs, this is a

great way to support your local

club.

Last year, clubs across Leinster raised

almost €400,000 through the Your

Club Your Country Draw. The funds

raised from the draw are an important

part of the funding of club’s activities

throughout the Province. The Your Club

Your Country draw is an even more

important source of income for clubs in

these difficult times. The cost of running

our clubs has risen dramatically in

2022. These cost increases include

a huge rise in the price of electricity

and diesel. This means that running

the floodlights for training and playing

matches is much more expensive and

pitches are more costly to cut and

maintain.

Your Club Your Country is a crucial

source of funding for participating

clubs. All money raised from ticket sales

by each club goes back to that club. If

your club sells €5,000 worth of tickets,

your club gets €5,000. It’s as simple

as that.

Tickets are on sale now, and cost €10

each. To make things even easier, tickets

can be purchased online through the

following link.

https://www.irishrugby.ie/runningyour-club/club-funding/your-club-yourcountry/

Click on the link, select your club and

purchase your tickets! Your support

of club rugby in Leinster is greatly

appreciated and essential to the

continued growth and development of

clubs. Please share the above link with

family and friends, and help spread

the word. Online sales will close on

Wednesday 30th November, with

the draw taking place on Friday 2nd

December.

Prizes

Follow the Ireland Rugby Team in

France for Rugby World Cup 2023

Return flights, hotel accommodation,

match tickets and spending allowance for

two persons (Compliments of Vodafone)

Win €5,000

Cheque for €5,000 (Compliments of

Energia)

Italy v Ireland 2023 Guinness Six

Nations VIP trip to Rome with the IRFU

Patrons Club

Return flights, hotel accommodation,

match tickets and spending allowance for

two persons (Compliments of Canterbury)

Scotland v Ireland 2023 Guinness

Six Nations VIP trip to Murrayfield,

Edinburgh

Return flights, hotel accommodation,

match tickets and spending allowance for

two persons (Compliments of Opel)

Experience Business Class Service with

Aer Lingus

Transatlantic business class return flights

to East Coast routes with Aer Lingus for

two persons (Compliments of Aer Lingus)

2023 Galway Races VIP package

Corporate hospitality at the

Galway races and overnight hotel

accommodation for two persons

(Compliments of Guinness)

Aldi Shopping voucher

Voucher to the value of €2000

(Compliments of Aldi)

Druids Glen Hotel & Golf Resort

Voucher

Voucher to the value of €1,000

(Compliments of Lucozade Sport)

Elverys Shopping voucher

Voucher to the value of €1,000

(Compliments of Elverys)

VIP package to both 2023 Guinness Six

Nations matches in Aviva Stadium

(Compliments of The Hospitality

Partnership)

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 43


'Leinster Rugby'

impress in Nairobi

BY PAULA CULLEN

A team of

Kenyan boys

playing with

Leinster

Rugby’ are

thriving in

the Mukuru

slums in

Nairobi.

The team continue to compete

in tournaments and the Kenyan

Rugby Union are also very

supportive of the endeavour. One

of the players, Dennis Wanyoro

has already been offered a

scholarship this year to a rugby

school outside of Nairobi and

is now involved in training with

national coaches at Under-16

level.

Coaching takes place at the twice a week

at the Rehabilitation Centre and the boys

are currently in transition from tag rugby

to full contact which they love.

Our fundraising efforts are ongoing as

we support the rehab centre financially,

sponsoring their coaches for rugby,

football and basketball. We sponsor

their outings to matches which includes

bus hire and supplying refreshments. Our

sponsorship programme also includes

educational and vocational support.

Our current project is to replace the

Mabati (corrugated shack) that serves

Dennis Wanyoro with

Paula Cullen and

Adrienne Burke

as a dining hall and is no longer fit for

purpose. The new build is currently under

construction.

If you would like to make a donation

towards our building project and rugby

support you can subscribe to IBAN

IE17BOFI90673425322997.

Any donations before 20th December

will be in with a chance to win a

weekend for two in Hotel Skelligs, Dingle,

Co. Kerry There is a runner-up prize of a

pair of tickets to an upcoming Heineken

Champions Cup game.

Our small volunteer group are eternally

grateful for the support that we have

received from so many people over the

years and hope that you will continue to

support these vulnerable street boys from

Mukuru slums.

Asante Sana

Paula Cullen

Irene Plunkett

Vera Smith

Catherine Nolan

Claire Chambers

Adrienne Burke

Theresa Heeran

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 45


compiled by stuart farmer

media services limited

Leinster Player

Statistics

SQUAD

CAP

NO

DEBUT

2022/23 SEASON FOR LEINSTER LEINSTER CAREER

ALL GAMES URC EPCR ALL GAMES PRO14/URC EPCR

App Try Pts App Try Pts App Try Pts App Try Pts App Try Pts App Try Pts

SINCE LAST TRY

CAPS

VAKHTANG ABDALADZE 1263 2 DEC 17 0+4 - - 0+4 - - - - - 0+21 2 10 0+20 2 10 0+1 - - 6 GEO 1

MICHAEL ALA'ALATOA 1301 25 SEP 21 5+1 - - 5+1 - - - - - 17+14 3 15 16+7 2 10 1+7 1 5 8 WS 12

RYAN BAIRD 1278 27 APR 19 3 1 5 3 1 5 - - - 22+19 8 40 20+14 8 40 2+5 - - 2 IR 8

LEE BARRON 1308 23 APR 22 - - - - - - - - - 0+2 - - 0+2 - - - - - - -

BEN BROWNLEE 1313 28 OCT 22 0+1 - - 0+1 - - - - - 0+1 - - 0+1 - - - - - - -

ED BYRNE 1222 9 FEB 14 3+2 - - 3+2 - - - - - 30+60 12 60 30+47 11 55 0+13 1 5 7 IR 6

HARRY BYRNE 1280 28 SEP 19 - - - - - - - - - 21+15 6 183 21+14 6 178 0+1 - 5 15 IR 2

ROSS BYRNE 1236 4 SEP 15 4+3 - 32 4+3 - 32 - - - 89+46 9 858 75+24 4 628 14+22 5 230 18 IR 14

TOM CLARKSON 1285 29 AUG 20 1+1 1 5 1+1 1 5 - - - 7+13 1 5 7+13 1 5 - - - 1 -

JACK CONAN 1223 20 FEB 14 2+1 - - 2+1 - - - - - 93+27 25 125 65+17 16 80 28+10 9 45 13 IR 33

WILL CONNORS 1264 9 FEB 18 1+3 - - 1+3 - - - - - 19+10 2 10 18+10 2 10 1 - - 16 IR 9

CHRIS COSGRAVE 1305 26 MAR 22 1 1 5 1 1 5 - - - 2+1 1 5 2+1 1 5 - - - 1 -

MAX DEEGAN 1256 3 DEC 16 3 - - 3 - - - - - 46+41 24 120 43+29 22 110 3+12 2 10 8 IR 2

BRIAN DEENY 1306 23 APR 22 0+2 - - 0+2 - - - - - 2+2 - - 2+2 - - - - - - -

CAELAN DORIS 1268 28 APR 18 3 - - 3 - - - - - 50+8 8 40 36+6 6 30 14+2 2 10 5 IR 23

CORMAC FOLEY 1299 24 APR 21 1+2 1 5 1+2 1 5 - - - 3+5 2 10 3+5 2 10 - - - 1 -

CIARAN FRAWLEY 1265 17 FEB 18 2+2 - 9 2+2 - 9 - - - 33+27 7 188 30+19 5 172 3+8 2 16 6 -

TADHG FURLONG 1220 1 NOV 13 1 - - 1 - - - - - 86+42 10 50 48+34 3 15 38+8 7 35 7 IR 63

JAMISON GIBSON-PARK 1247 2 SEP 16 - - - - - - - - - 60+56 22 110 49+30 15 75 11+26 7 35 2 IR 23

MARCUS HANAN 1295 19 FEB 21 - - - - - - - - - 0+3 - - 0+3 - - - - - - -

CIAN HEALY 1142 5 MAY 07 1+2 - - 1+2 - - - - - 161+91 30 150 94+58 16 80 65+32 13 65 4 IR 121

ROBBIE HENSHAW 1251 8 OCT 16 4+1 1 5 4+1 1 5 - - - 70+3 17 85 33+2 8 40 37+1 9 45 3 IR 61

JASON JENKINS 1310 17 SEP 22 6 2 10 6 2 10 - - - 6 2 10 6 2 10 - - - 3 SA 1

DAVE KEARNEY 1158 16 MAY 09 4 1 5 4 1 5 - - - 154+23 53 265 128+16 46 230 25+6 7 35 4 IR 19

HUGO KEENAN 1253 5 NOV 16 - - - - - - - - - 41+3 9 45 28+3 5 25 13 4 20 2 IR 25

RONAN KELLEHER 1277 22 FEB 19 1+1 - - 1+1 - - - - - 30+8 13 65 17+6 11 55 13+2 2 10 9 IR 18

JORDAN LARMOUR 1258 2 SEP 17 3 - - 3 - - - - - 67+10 27 135 43+7 20 100 24+3 7 35 5 IR 30

TEMI LASISI 1304 12 MAR 22 - - - - - - - - - 0+1 - - 0+1 - - - - - - -

JAMES LOWE 1262 2 DEC 17 - - - - - - - - - 63+2 47 235 39+1 28 140 24+1 19 95 2 IR 15

JOE MCCARTHY 1303 29 JAN 22 0+2 - - 0+2 - - - - - 8+5 1 5 8+2 1 5 0+3 - - 4 IR 1

NICK MCCARTHY 1241 19 DEC 15 0+5 - - 0+5 - - - - - 9+42 5 25 9+36 5 25 0+6 - - 11 -

TADGH MCELROY 1312 28 OCT 22 0+1 - - 0+1 - - - - - 0+1 - - 0+1 - - - - - - -

46 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


SQUAD

CAP

NO

DEBUT

2022/23 SEASON FOR LEINSTER LEINSTER CAREER

ALL GAMES URC EPCR ALL GAMES PRO14/URC EPCR

App Try Pts App Try Pts App Try Pts App Try Pts App Try Pts App Try Pts

SINCE LAST TRY

CAPS

LUKE MCGRATH 1206 5 MAY 12 6 3 15 6 3 15 - - - 120+61 44 220 85+49 36 180 35+12 8 40 2 IR 19

JOHN MCKEE 1307 23 APR 22 1+4 1 5 1+4 1 5 - - - 3+5 1 5 3+5 1 5 - - - 4 -

MICHAEL MILNE 1279 28 SEP 19 0+2 - - 0+2 - - - - - 1+18 2 10 1+18 2 10 - - - 17 -

MARTIN MOLONEY 1300 24 APR 21 0+3 - - 0+3 - - - - - 2+8 - - 2+8 - - - - - - -

ROSS MOLONY 1233 20 FEB 15 6+1 - - 6+1 - - - - - 88+58 5 25 78+43 4 20 10+15 1 5 23 -

BEN MURPHY 1309 21 MAY 22 - - - - - - - - - 0+1 - - 0+1 - - - - - - -

CHARLIE NGATAI 1311 17 SEP 22 4+2 - - 4+2 - - - - - 4+2 - - 4+2 - - - - - - NZ 1

JAMIE OSBORNE 1294 30 JAN 21 2 - - 2 - - - - - 15+6 1 5 15+6 1 5 - - - 16 -

JIMMY O'BRIEN 1272 23 NOV 18 5 - - 5 - - - - - 48+10 16 84 39+9 10 54 9+1 6 30 7 IR 3

SEAN O'BRIEN 1297 12 MAR 21 - - - - - - - - - 0+3 - - 0+3 - - - - - - -

TOMMY O'BRIEN 1283 20 DEC 19 - - - - - - - - - 10+11 6 30 10+9 6 30 0+2 - - 2 -

MAX O'REILLY 1291 2 JAN 21 1 - - 1 - - - - - 9+1 1 5 9+1 1 5 - - - 9 -

SCOTT PENNY 1271 23 NOV 18 3 1 5 3 1 5 - - - 37+7 24 120 37+7 24 120 - - - 2 -

ANDREW PORTER 1246 2 SEP 16 3+2 1 5 3+2 1 5 - - - 44+52 15 75 32+33 11 55 12+19 4 20 3 IR 48

GARRY RINGROSE 1237 12 SEP 15 4+1 2 10 4+1 2 10 - - - 104+3 32 168 64+2 21 113 40+1 11 55 3 IR 47

RHYS RUDDOCK 1167 6 DEC 09 3 2 10 3 2 10 - - - 159+54 14 70 121+35 12 60 37+17 2 10 3 IR 27

ROB RUSSELL 1302 3 OCT 21 4+1 3 15 4+1 3 15 - - - 7+3 3 15 7+3 3 15 - - - 1 -

CHARLIE RYAN - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

JAMES RYAN 1259 2 SEP 17 2+2 - - 2+2 - - - - - 54+8 3 15 29+3 1 5 25+5 2 10 22 IR 48

JOHNNY SEXTON 1127 27 JAN 06 2+1 1 26 2+1 1 26 - - - 158+29 27 1640 91+22 14 883 65+7 12 726 2 IR 109

DAN SHEEHAN 1286 23 OCT 20 5 6 30 5 6 30 - - - 14+20 22 110 13+13 19 95 1+7 3 15 1 IR 13

ANDREW SMITH 1292 2 JAN 21 - - - - - - - - - 1+1 - - 1+1 - - - - - - -

ALEX SOROKA 1296 28 FEB 21 0+1 - - 0+1 - - - - - 2+4 - - 2+4 - - - - - - -

CHARLIE TECTOR 1314 28 OCT 22 0+1 - - 0+1 - - - - - 0+1 - - 0+1 - - - - - - -

JAMES TRACY 1211 4 NOV 12 - - - - - - - - - 64+77 18 90 57+48 17 85 7+29 1 5 5 IR 6

LIAM TURNER 1287 23 OCT 20 2 - - 2 - - - - - 6+2 - - 6+2 - - - - - - -

JOSH VAN DER FLIER 1228 11 OCT 14 3 1 5 3 1 5 - - - 93+24 19 95 55+18 9 45 38+6 10 50 3 IR 45

ALEX SOROKA 1296 28 FEB 21 1+2 - - 1+2 - - - - - 2+3 - - 2+3 - - - - - - -

DEVIN TONER 1128 27 JAN 06 6+8 - - 6+5 - - 0+3 - - 212+68 4 20 146+47 4 20 63+21 - - 63 IR 70

JAMES TRACY 1211 4 NOV 12 7+5 4 20 7+4 4 20 0+1 - - 64+77 18 90 57+48 17 85 7+29 1 5 5 IR 6

LIAM TURNER 1287 23 OCT 20 - - - - - - - - - 4+2 - - 4+2 - - - - - - -

JOSH VAN DER FLIER 1228 11 OCT 14 15+1 7 35 7+1 1 5 8 6 30 90+24 18 90 52+18 8 40 38+6 10 50 4 IR 43

KICKING

2022/23 SEASON FOR LEINSTER LEINSTER CAREER

ALL GAMES URC EPCR ALL GAMES PRO14/URC EPCR OVERALL

SUCCESS

RATE

C PG DG C PG DG C PG DG C PG DG C PG DG C PG DG ATT Career

%

- - - HARRY BYRNE - - - - - - - - - - 63 9 62 8 1 1 92 78.26%

ROSS BYRNE 78.95% 13 2 - 13 2 - - - - 267 92 1 208 63 1 59 29 - 459 78.21%

CIARAN FRAWLEY 100.00% 3 1 - 3 1 - - - - 57 13 - 54 13 - 3 - - 84 83.33%

JIMMY O'BRIEN - - - - - - - - - - 2 - - 2 - - - - - 4 50.00%

GARRY RINGROSE - - - - - - - - - - 4 - - 4 - - - - - 6 66.67%

JOHNNY SEXTON 76.92% 9 1 - 9 1 - - - - 274 308 11 138 172 7 129 132 4 727 80.06%

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 47


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48 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


Bank of Ireland

Match Day Mascots

Eduardo

McFeely

Age: 9

School: St. Helen’s Senior National School, Portmarnock

Class: Third class

Hobbies: Drawing comics, going to see Leinster, playing

soccer, Gaelic football and hurling

Favourite player: James Lowe

Jack

Forde

Age: 8

School: Harold’s Cross-National School

Class: Second class

Hobbies: Music, Gaming, Sports

Favourite player: Johnny Sexton

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 49


ig picture

Friday 28th Oct 2022

Leinster debutants, from left,

Ben Brownlee Tadgh McElroy

and Charlie Tector after their

side’s victory in the United Rugby

Championship match between

Scarlets and Leinster at Parc Y

Scarlets in Llanelli, Wales.

50 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


Photo by Harry Murphy/Sportsfile

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 51


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SUPPORTERS CLUB

OLSC travel GUIDE

HEINEKEN CHAMPIONS CUP 2022/23

offical leinster

supporters club

OLSC UPDATE

It has been great to be back

in packed out RDS & Aviva

Stadiums, as we now head

into the next block of Leinster

Rugby games, that include

Interprovincials, URC & Heineken

Champions Cup matches. With a

number of away games over the

next few months, the OLSC have

been busy with helpful travel

information & services to help

us bring the #seaofblue to away

grounds

OLSC AIRPORT TRANSFER

BUS TO LE HAVRE FOR

RACING 92 AWAY GAME

Tickets are now on sale for the

OLSC Airport Bus Transfer Service

for our Heineken Champions Cup

away fixture in December Vs

Racing 92 (in Le Havre).

Le Havre Airport Transfer Bus – Tickets

can be bought HERE and the cost of this

bus transfer will be €40.00pp each way.

The return OLSC transfer Bus from Paris

Beauvais Airport direct to/from Le Havre

City Centre will operate on the following

dates & times:

• Paris Beauvais Airport to Le Havre:

Saturday 10th December – 9.30 am

pick up

(This will service the Ryanair Flight

FR8018 arriving at 9.00 am)

• Le Havre to Paris Beauvais Airport:

Sunday 11th December – 11.45 am

pick up

(This will service the Ryanair Flight

FR8004 departing at 4.35 pm)

Airport Transfer Bus Tickets can be

bought HERE.

OLSC TRAVEL GUIDE –

HEINEKEN CHAMPIONS

CUP 2022/23

Getting to see Leinster Rugby

on the road in the Heineken

Champions Cup this season is

more affordable than you think!

The OLSC has now produced a Travel

Guide with helpful travel information

to help us bring the #seaofblue to Le

Havre & Gloucester in Europe. At the

time of writing, there are still some good

reasonable value available with flights

etc to travel to Le Havre & Gloucester

You can download

the Travel Guide

HERE.

(Details of the

Airport Bus Transfer

OLSC Travel GUIDE

Heineken Champions

Services for the

Cup 2022/23

1

Gloucester away

fixture will be available early next week)

OLSC SUPPORTERS BUS TO

MUNSTER

We are pleased to announce

that tickets are now on sale

HERE for the supporters’ bus

to the upcoming away URC

Interprovincial against Munster

(26 December, Thomond Park)

With thanks to the official Leinster Rugby

partner, Aircoach, tickets are now on sale

through Eventbrite and full details, prices,

departure times, and locations are HERE.

Match tickets are available to

purchase from Ticketmaster. The OLSC

recommends buying seats in the East

Terraces & East Stand to keep the blue

together

54 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


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celebrating the 2011 and 2012

Leinster Heineken Cup teams

Today, we celebrate the

Leinster rugby teams

who won back-to-back

Heineken Cups in 2011

and 2012 as they get

paraded on the pitch at

half-time.

A second-half comeback for

the ages saw Leinster win the

Heineken Cup for the second

time in three years, defeating

Northampton Saints in Cardiff’s

Millennium Stadium.

28 points from man-of-the-match Johnny

Sexton saw Leinster come back to win

comfortably, having been 22-6 down at

half-time.

Sexton scored two tries inside the

opening 15-minutes of the second-half,

with Nathan Hines adding a third just

past the hour mark. Northampton were

unable to cope with the barrage, leaving

the 2000 champions shell-shocked.

First-half tries from Phil Dowson, Ben

Foden and Dylan Hartley gave the

English side a 16-point buffer at the

break, but they would not score in the

second-half, as they tried in vain to cope

with a Leinster onslaught.

Leinster took the lead just before the hour

mark, thanks to two Sexton tries that he

converted, along with a penalty. They’d

never look back as Hines would cross the

tryline, and Sexton would add another

penalty, for an almost flawless day from

the kicking tee.

Joe Schmidt’s side were the first Irish team to

successfully retain the Heineken Cup, and only the

second team to do so, after Leicester Tigers won the

competition in 2001 and 2002.

Following the win over Leicester in 2009 for the inaugural title,

Leinster would become the first team to win Europe’s premier

club competition three times in four years.

After the magic of Murrayfield in 2009, here is how Leinster

climbed to the top of the mountain once more (and stayed

there) in the Millennium Stadium and Twickenham.

2011: Leinster 33-22 Northampton Saints

LEINSTER SCORERS: J. Sexton (2 tries, 3 conversions, 4 penalties), N. Hines (1 try)

56 | www.leinsterrugby.ie

LEINSTER:

15: Isa Nacewa

14: Shane Horgan

13: Brian O’Driscoll

12: Gordon D’Arcy

(Fergus McFadden, 68)

11: Luke Fitzgerald

10: Jonathan Sexton

(Ian Madigan, 78)

9: Eoin Reddan

(Isaac Boss, 72)

1: Cian Healy

(Heinke van der Merwe, 61)

2: Richardt Strauss

(Jason Harris-Wright, 79)

3: Mike Ross

(Stan Wright, 78)

4: Leo Cullen CAPTAIN

5: Nathan Hines

(Devin Toner, 78)

6: Kevin McLaughlin

(Shane Jennings, half-time)

7: Seán O’Brien

(Kevin McLaughlin, 46-47, blood sub)

8: Jamie Heaslip


2012: Leinster 42-14 Ulster

LEINSTER SCORERS: S. O’Brien (1 try), C. Healy (1 try), Penalty try, H. van der Merwe (1 try). S. Cronin (1 try),

J. Sexton (3 conversions and 3 penalties), F. McFadden (1 conversion)

After the drama of 2011, the

following year was a more

straightforward affair, as Leinster

retained the title in the first

All-Ireland Heineken Cup Final,

against Ulster.

A five-try performance gave the team a

42-14 win in Twickenham, becoming only

the second team to successfully defend

the title.

The 42 points scored by Leinster beat the

previous record for a final of 34, which

Leicester ran up in 2001. Their five-try

haul also eclipsed Brive’s four from the

1997 decider, and the winning margin

of 28 points was another milestone for

the province. It was also the first time a

team went through the full Heineken Cup

season unbeaten.

Leinster led 14-6 at the break, as manof-the-match

Seán O’Brien and Cian

Healy both scored tries. Ulster could only

respond with two Ruan Pienaar penalties.

After the break, Leinster kept the pressure

on with a penalty try, but Ulster kept in

touch, thanks to a Dan Tuohy try and

another Pienaar penalty.

Heinke van der Merwe and Seán Cronin

both scored tries in the final five minutes

to add a well deserved gloss to the

scoreline.

LEINSTER:

15: Rob Kearney

(David Kearney, 72)

14: Fergus McFadden

13: Brian O’Driscoll

(David Kearney, 66-72, blood sub)

12: Gordon D’Arcy

11: Isa Nacewa

10: Jonathan Sexton

(Ian Madigan, 74)

9: Eoin Reddan

(John Cooney, 74)

1: Cian Healy

(Heinke van der Merwe, 62)

2: Richardt Strauss

(Seán Cronin, 68)

3: Mike Ross

(Nathan White, 70)

4: Leo Cullen CAPTAIN

(Devin Toner, 58)

5: Brad Thorn

6: Kevin McLaughlin

(Shane Jennings, 62)

7: Seán O’Brien

8: Jamie Heaslip

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 57


THE ULTIMATE

URC EXPERIENCE

JOIN FOR FREE

Personalised team

experience

Exclusive offers

& competitions

Premium opinion

articles & analysis

Match highlights &

exclusive video content

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 59


As Official Clean Air Partner to Leinster Rugby,

Novaerus by McGreals Health provides both squad and

management with safe, clean, indoor air, 24/7.

Clean air indoors gives Leinster the edge, helping to

improve physical performance, cognitive ability, make

healthier bodies, reduce the risk of illness and allergies and

give more energy.


GETTING

We check social media

for the latest views

and thoughts across

SOCIAL

the 12 counties

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 61


THEN: Chris

won 52 caps

for Leinster

between 1985

and 1997.

NOW: He

operates

seven

McDonald’s

franchises

and lives

in Kilkenny

with his wife

Louise. They

have three

sons Sam (26),

Reuben (23)

and Noah (20).

Me and Martin Johnson

Three lads and their Dad sporting their own Leinster jerseys! (Slightly proud Dad!)

Chris Pim has often been

described as the best Leinster

player to have never played for

Ireland.

The boy from Mountmellick, educated

at Newtown, the Quaker school in

Waterford, attended Edinburgh University

in the first of two overseas experiences to

enhance his career.

After one year playing for Old Wesley

and the Leinster U19s, Chris moved to

study agriculture in Edinburgh, a chance

to play for Academicals where he came

up against Scotland’s best.

That meant competing against the likes

John Jeffrey, Eric Paxton, Finlay Calder

and Andy Irvine on a weekly basis in

what was an unusual apprenticeship for

an Irishman.

“It was certainly a Golden Era for

Scottish rugby. They were winning Grand

Slams and Triple Crowns. I was playing

first-team rugby against those men one

year out of school which was an amazing

experience. I absolutely loved it.

“I finished college in Scotland and came

home to become a farmer. At least, that

was the plan.

It really wasn’t what I fancied.”

He ended up working with Beamish

Crawford, a Cork brewery, at the time,

for about eight years.

“I was playing for Leinster and they

thought it was a good marketing

move. It was a seriously talented

team with Paul Dean, Fergus

Ahearne, Brendan Mullin, Des

Fitzgerald and Neil Francis.

“It brought nothing like the

profile a Cork inter-county hurler

would have. They probably

didn’t quite realise that,” he

giggles.

“It suited me. It allowed me to

play rugby, train in the morning

and in the evening, and work

during the day.”

In terms of time in Blue, Chris’s

career can be neatly divided into pre

and post-New Zealand, the first from

62 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


WHERE

ARE

THEY

NOW?

chris

pimBY DES BERRY

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 63


kicking everything. Eventually, he passed

the ball and I absolutely buried him.

“He took it in the spirit in which I

intended. I actually ended up going on

the beer with him later and it turned into

one of the best nights of my life. What a

lovely guy.”

It wasn’t long before Chris returned to the

more serious business of playing for Old

Wesley and Leinster, partly to capture

that elusive Ireland cap.

The second time around, Chris returned

early to fit in a Leinster joust with the All

Blacks only to be dropped for Kelvin

Leahy the week before the game.

“I would say I was probably playing

‘s&ite,’ to be honest. I had played three

seasons back-to-back. It was taking its

toll. I wasn’t at my best.

“Also, I went to New Zealand playing

my game and they changed it over there.

When I came back, it didn’t really fit into

Leinster’s style of play.

“It took me a while to get my mojo back.

Then again, maybe Kelvin was better

than me. You don’t have to write that. I

couldn’t be giving him the satisfaction,”

he laughed.

Sam and Reuben at Trinity red n black rugby ball (with Louise)

1985-to-1988 and then from 1989-to-

1997 when finishing up as the second

most-capped Leinster player on 52

appearances, one behind Phil Orr.

“Imagine,” he quipped, “you would pick

up that many in a season-and-a-half these

days.”

In 1988, Willie John McBride wondered

how Chris would fancy a season down

under and, through Jonny Moffett,

arranged for a sabbatical to the Land of

the Long White Cloud.

“I played with the Hastings Club and for

Hawke’s Bay against Manawatu and

the all-conquering Auckland of Shaun

Fitzpatrick,” he said.

Twenty years later, Chris was invited

to a Chamber of Commerce breakfast

in Kilkenny where Ireland coach Joe

Schmidt was the guest speaker.

“How Joe ended up there, I will never

know. He was surrounded by hurlers and

lads who hadn’t a clue about rugby. They

knew I played the game and asked me to

sit beside him. I was delighted.

“I was telling him about my New Zealand

experience and Joe was able to tell me

how he was playing for Manawatu that

day. That was a good one.

“Anyway, the following week, I played

against Auckland, who had 13 All Blacks

in their team, including the Whetton

brothers, Michael Jones, Grant Fox. They

were unbelievable. That was one of the

best days of my life.

“We came second in the match. But,

I had a lovely time getting the ‘s&*t’

kicked out of me.

“All I had in my mind was to crease Grant

Fox and wear that as a badge of honour

for the rest of my life. He spent the game

In 1992/93, I didn’t make the Leinster

squad and it allowed me to focus on Old

Wesley where I was appointed captain

for two years.

It was the club’s best season ever, coming

second in the AIL with a Wesley side that

included 13 interpros, plus the best two

players were the ones that weren’t, Derek

Vincent and Adrian Hawe.”

The presence of Wesley as a force in the

AIL didn’t harm Chris’s interprovincial

status, Leinster Manager Jim Glennon

sitting the gobsmacked flanker down one

day to offer him the province’s armband.

“I was captain of Leinster for the first

two seasons of the Heineken Cup and

absolutely loved it,” he notes.

“It was early days. The whole

professional thing, the players really

hadn’t a clue what it meant.

Nobody had any idea what it would turn

into. It was, literally, make it up as you

go along.

64 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


“When we heard we were going to

Milan for our first ever first Heineken

Cup match, it was ‘yeah, a weekend on

the ‘pi*s’ nearly. It was a case of suck it

and see.

Really grainy photo of my dream

day (with my mum and dad) in

the back row with L. Dallagio and

galaxy of stars.

“It was seen as a better version of the

mini-tours we use to go on to England

for pre-season. And someone was going

to give you a few quid for it. Fantastic. It

was an adventure.”

Chris’s Leinster career had come fullcircle,

graduating from rookie to revered

leader.

“I had Brendan Mullin and Paul Dean at

the start of my career when I knew very

little about playing at that level.

“Then, I had Paul Wallace, Shane Byrne,

Mal O’Kelly, all that generation. They

A nice half page shot

on the front the sports

supplement of the Irish

Times during a very

satisfying win over the

‘Cookies’!

were my babies by then. I had to look out

for them. They book-ended my career.”

In 1997, when the end came, Chris got

out of bed one morning not knowing he

would be knocking on new coach Mike

Ruddock’s door later in the day to let him

know he was finished.

“Trevor Brennan was there annoying

the ‘s&*te’ out of me at training. I knew

I would have to look at this guy cutting

lumps out of me for the rest of the season.

“Not that I would walk away from a

physical challenge. Don’t get me wrong.

But, I could see the next generation was

coming.”

Since then, Chris has steadily built a

personal chain of seven McDonald’s

franchises situated in Kilkenny, Cashel,

Dungarvan, Fermoy, Ballincollig and two

in Cork city centre.

“I found that the sense of team from rugby

translated into running a business,” he

says.

“If you are the best that you can be, I’m

not going to ask any more than that from

you. It is the same ethos.

“We are far more effective as a team than

we are going off and doing our own thing

to get promoted ahead of someone else.

“The best way to be good is to make your

mates look good.”

It was always his way.

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 65


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Referees

Corner

BY DAN WALLACE

Welcome to another edition of Referees

Corner and a very warm welcome to

today’s match referee Marius van der

Westhuizen, supported by Keane Davison

and Andre Fogarty.

Marius was born in Cape

Town, South Africa. He started

refereeing first class matches

in 2011, making his debut in

the 2011 Vodacom Cup match

between the Free State Cheetahs

and the Falcons in Bloemfontein

and took charge of ten

matches in the 2011 Under-19

and Under-21 Provincial

Championships.

He was named on SANZAR’s referee list

for the 2014 Super Rugby season and

was in charge of his first Super Rugby

match when the Lions met the Crusaders

in Johannesburg. He also officiated

at the 2014 Commonwealth Games

in Glasgow. We wish him a warm

welcome today.

One of our own recently

promoted referees, Robbie

Jenkinson is already making

great strides on the IRFU

National Referees Panel. I had

the chance to catch up with

him last week, when he was

just back from touch judging

for Andrew Cole in the Rugby

Europe Competition between

Black Lions and Batumi in Tbilisi.

What made you decide to take

up the whistle?

My dad was a referee (now an assessor

with the ARLB) so I’ve always had an

interest in that side of the game. After

I picked up a broken knuckle playing

senior rugby with Skerries RFC he

encouraged me to pick up the whistle

and give it a go while I was rehabbing

my hand. I played for a number of years

after that but some more frustrating

injuries down the line pushed me back

towards refereeing where there were

more opportunities to go further in the

game.

How long are you refereeing

now and what level are you at?

I’ve juggled refereeing and playing

since 2014 but from 2019 until today

I’ve just been refereeing. I’m currently

on Level 2 of the National Panel.

What is the biggest thing you

have learned since you started

out?

The biggest thing I’ve learned since I’ve

started out is that the perfect game in

terms of a ref’s performance doesn’t

exist. There will always be mistakes

or something missed. It’s what I found

hardest coming from playing where you

practice set piece plays and patterns so

68 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


much that you expect perfection from

your role and anything less than that is

almost unacceptable. It’s an important

psychological skill being able to deal

with, learn from and park your mistakes

and it’s something I’m still trying to

embrace.

What was the process like to

become a referee?

It all starts with the new recruits’ course

run in the Leinster Branch. This is your

first taste of what refereeing is all about.

It’s pretty daunting but exciting going

into that environment at first with a

lot of new and random faces but you

quickly become tight knit with a lot of

these people. You’ll have your trial

game where you’ll be assessed by an

ARLB assessor on your performance,

knowledge of the laws and your

management of player safety. If you get

through your trial game you’ll be passed

as a member. Thereafter there’s a huge

amount of people and resources within

the ARLB willing to help develop you as

a referee, a lot of which have helped me

get to where I am today.

What is your favourite thing

about refereeing?

There’s many things I could list as my

favourite thing about refereeing. To put

it simply, it’s still being in the game. It’s

the challenge and pressure of some

games with the nerves and physical/

mental challenges that come with it that

I love. It’s also the people you meet and

the friends you make are what makes it

great too.

What is the most memorable

game you have refereed so far?

I refereed Leinster A v AIL XV at the

very end of last season which was more

of an exhibition game but the pace of

the game and the skill level on show

particularly at the end of the season

when the fitness and skill levels are

at the peak was incredible. The week

before I was AR in my first URC game

for Munster v Cardiff which was a

surreal experience with it being my first

taste of the pro game but that was a

great buzz. A very memorable week.

What is your pre–match routine

like?

I like to do a lot of band work, stretching

& loosening up before doing any

running or the actual warm up. The only

superstition I have is that I need to give

my dog Boo a belly rub before I leave

for a game. Some crowds are very

welcoming, shouting my dog’s name

from the stands sometimes.

What are your refereeing

aspirations?

I’d be lying if I said I didn’t want to get

to the top, you need to dream big but

there’s also a lot of short-term milestones

that I’d like to hit which requires

performing well and learning from every

experience in the meantime.

For aspiring referees what do

you think will make you improve

as a referee?

Aside from the vitals like good fitness

levels and law knowledge, experience

& improvement comes from your

failures and mistakes. The more you ref,

the more opportunities you’ll have to

iron out any of those bad habits and

mistakes which will ultimately make

you a better ref. Being coachable and

soaking up constructive criticism will

help drive improvement.

What advice would you give to

someone thinking about taking

up refereeing?

I would just say give it a go! You might

love it, you might not, but at least you’ll

know. Refereeing has given me some

great friends, incredible memories and

plenty of unbelievable opportunities to

date. you never know where it could

take you.

Want to get

involved?

Feel free to make contact

with the Leinster Rugby

Referees at hayley.whyte@

leinsterrugby.ie

If you are interested in

becoming a referee get in

contact with us through our

Facebook, our website

www.leinsterrugbyreferees.ie

or through twitter

@leinsterreferee.

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 69


ank of ireland

MATCHDAY MINIS

Stillorgan-

Rathfarnham RFC

Players: Frankie Bennis, Tadgh Brennan, Ollie Conlon,

Eanna Courtney, Lihann De Wet, Sean Dempsey,

Harry Greene, Ronan Kealy, Ruben Keenan, Finn Masterson,

Brian McCrae, Milo McKeogh, Archie Moffett, Dylan Morgan,

Ruadhan Murphy, Fiachra O’Sullivan, Paddy Shanahan,

Cormac Smith, Tiziano Spina, James Yip

North Meath RFC

Players: Daire Beacroft, Daire Tully, Danny Keane,

Denas Gudziunas, Hugh Gilsenan, James Cassidy,

Kristian Kellett, Matthew Loganathan, Paddy O’Sullivan,

Turlough Daly, James Carville, Philip Tevlin, Tom Clinton,

James Lyman, Lorcan O’Connor, James Smith, Dathai Byrne

Navan RFC

Players: Bebo Ayesa, Sean Parlour, Lucus Heverin,

Luke Byrne, Seth Walsh, Luke Gaffney, Tadhg Hogan,

Jack Colgan, Dylan Smith, Luke Reynolds Donnelly,

Kallum Markey MaGoona, Ashan Dharmasena, Liam Crinnion,

Ross Mulvany, Senan Kavanagh, Evan Quirke McGrath,

Gerard Burns, Ethan Downes, Conor Wyse, Leon Egan

Kilkenny RFC

Players: Danny Greene, Danny Reade, Paddy O’Meara,

Sam Harper, John Heslin, Darragh Costello, Daniel Maher,

Jack Hanafin, Micheal Fitzgerald, Sean Dooley,

Eanna Costello, Joe Hanrahan, Scott Cooke,

Tommy Condon, Tom O’Brien, Liam O’Callaghan,

Sam Baird, Mark Byrne, Bobby Aylward

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 71


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IS ESSENTIAL IN THIS GAME.

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Van der Flier Feeling ‘Very

Honoured And Grateful’ To

Join Elite Group

Josh van der

Flier admitted

it ‘still hasn’t

sunk in’ as

he savoured

joining a list

of greats of

the game as

the 2022 World

Rugby Men’s 15s

Player of the

Year.

Van der Flier added to his already

impressive list of individual

accolades this year, edging out

his Leinster and Ireland captain

Johnny Sexton, 2021 winner

Antoine Dupont from France, and

South Africa centre Lukhanyo Am

for the prestigious global honour.

The Wicklow-man has certainly had a

year to remember having already won

the Leinster Players Player of the Year, the

Rugby Writers Ireland Player of the Year,

the Rugby Players Ireland Player of the

Year as well as the European Player of

the Year.

He will have a couple of days off,

including a long-awaited return to the

golf course, before getting stuck back

in with Leinster for some big BKT United

Rugby Championship games and the

start of their Heineken Champions Cup

campaign.

Speaking in the aftermath of the awards

ceremony, which was held in Monaco’s

Salle des Étoiles, van der Flier said: “Even

though I knew I was nominated, honestly

it hasn’t really sunk in (that I’ve won the

award), but feeling very honoured.

“I’m very grateful, I suppose, for the team

that I’ve been fortunate to be a part of,

the Irish team, and how well we’ve done

this year.

“They showed a highlights reel for the

nominees, all my tries were set up by

someone else or they were maul tries

where everyone else did all the other

work and I just put the ball down.

“It’s been one of those seasons where

I’ve got on the end of a few, the bounce

of the ball went my way.

“It was pretty cool to be even nominated

alongside Lukhanyo, Antoine and Johnny

as well. It was a very special moment to

be announced as the winner.”

Van der Flier has been ultra-consistent in

his performances for both Leinster and

Ireland in 2022, so much so that he is

now both the reigning World Rugby and

EPCR European Player of the Year – a

feat only achieved by Dupont before, just

twelve months ago.

The 29-year-old flanker started 2022

with a bang, as he scored three tries in

his first two games of the year against

Montpellier and Bath Rugby in the

Heineken Champions Cup.

He then played in every minute of

Ireland’s 2022 Six Nations campaign

scoring tries against France and Scotland,

as Ireland narrowly missed out on the title

to the French.

On his return to Leinster, van der Flier

helped them to a 34-19 win away to

74 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


Munster to keep Leinster in first place in

the URC.

As we entered the knock-out stages of the

Heineken Champions Cup, van der Flier

wore number seven for both legs of the

last 16 tie against Connacht, with Leinster

winning 26-21 in Galway, before a 56-

20 win at Aviva Stadium.

Up next was a trip to Welford Road and

a tough tie against Leicester Tigers. Van

der Flier scored a pivotal try off the back

of a lineout to help Leinster claim a 23-14

win to set up a semi-final with Toulouse.

Once again, van der Flier touched

down for a key try from a Johnny Sexton

offload as Leinster reached another

Champions Cup final with a 40-17 win.

Unfortunately, it wasn’t to be in Marseille

as La Rochelle scored a try in the dying

moments to claim a 24-21 win.

At the end of the 2021/22 season, van

der Flier set his sights on a tour to New

Zealand and he was a pivotal member

of the Ireland squad that won a first ever

series away to New Zealand. He played

in all three test matches, scored a try in

the final test and played all but the last

eight minutes of the final test.

Van der Flier helped Ireland to complete

a hat-trick of scalps of the Southern

Hemisphere’s big three when starting

against South Africa and Australia in the

Bank of Ireland Nations Series.

It is very much a case of hard work

paying off though for van der Flier in

terms of his current rich vein of form. He

has had a few setbacks along the way,

including his ACL injury in 2018, and

they have certainly motivated him to get

the best out of his game.

This time last year Ireland head coach

Farrell, when praising van der Flier’s

ever-improving displays, reckoned that

‘something clicked with Josh when Will

Connors was coming onto the scene’.

The man himself acknowledged as

much tonight as he spoke about

managing to blend aspects of his

game better than he has in the

past and ‘getting more all-round

performances’.

“I suppose if I was to look at a period

that has definitely kicked me on

was two years ago around now, when

I wasn’t getting picked for some games

with Leinster. Will Connors was starting,

he was playing brilliantly.

I wasn’t getting picked for some of the

Irish games as well. I was kind of in

and out of the team. I realised, I mean I

always try to improve, but I was like, ‘I

need to kind of up my game or I won’t be

playing for Leinster or Ireland’.

“That was definitely a thing that drove me

on. I probably managed to get a good

blend the last year or so of the various

bits of my game that had been good over

a few years, I just managed to get it to

performances on the weekend.

“As things fall into place I guess, I

managed to stay fit and got a few

bounces of the ball and obviously was in

a great Leinster team and a really, really

good Irish team.”

It was a memorable night in general for

Irish Rugby at the World Rugby Awards,

with St Mary’s College RFC man Terry

Kennedy crowned the World Rugby

Men’s Sevens Player of the Year, and

van der Flier, Sexton, Tadhg Furlong and

Tadhg Beirne selected on the Men’s 15s

Dream Team. Unfortunately, another

Leinster man nominated on the night, Dan

Sheehan, came up short in the Break

Through Player of the Year Award.

Van der Flier is only the third Irishman

to win rugby’s biggest individual

honour, following in the footsteps of the

legendary Keith Wood, the inaugural

recipient back in 2001, and Sexton who

was chosen on the back of Ireland’s

2018 Grand Slam triumph.

To be up there now with national

captains, record breakers and World

Cup winners, van der Flier is well aware

of the enormity of it all given how closely

he followed the awards during his school

days in Wesley College, in Dublin.

“I remember in school I used to know

off by heart, every year, who had

won the World Player of the Year,”

he explained.

“I’d say if you had asked me today

I would have been able to rattle it off

as well! It’s crazy really to be up there

with them (Wood and Sexton).

“Obviously it’s a nice moment, but I do

have to think it’s as a result of how well

the team’s performed and obviously

being on a winning team helps for sure.”

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 75


COUNTRY SCOTLAND HOME GROUND SCOTSTOUN STADIUM FOUNDED 1872 CHAMPIONS x1

last time out

glasgow warriors 37

benetton rugby 0

28 OCT 2022 | ROUND 7 · URC | SCOTSTOUN STADIUM | CRAIG EVANS (WRU)

Glasgow maintains perfect

home record in URC

A dominant display saw Glasgow

Warriors record a 37-0 victory

over Benetton at Scotstoun, as

Franco Smith’s men made it 15

points from a possible 15 at home

in the 2022/23 BKT United Rugby

Championship.

Glasgow Warriors: Josh McKay, Sebastian Cancelliere, Kyle Steyn, Stafford McDowall (Tom

Jordan, rep ‘73), Rufus McClean, Domingo Miotti, Jamie Dobie (Sean Kennedy, rep ‘60), Oli

Kebble (Nathan McBeth, rep ‘58), Fraser Brown (Jonny Matthews, rep ‘58), Murphy Walker

(Simon Berghan, rep ‘58), Sintu Manjezi, Alex Samuel (Lewis Bean, rep ‘66), Ryan Wilson (Euan

Ferrie, rep: ‘50), Gregor Brown, Sione Vailanu (JP Du Preez, rep ‘58)

Tries: Vailanu 2, Canceliere, McDowall, Brown. McLean

Conversions: Miotti (2/6)

Penalties: Miotti (1/1)

Glasgow were on top from the

opening whistle, but it took

until the eleventh minute for the

opening score. Spotting a gap,

Sione Vailanu backed himself on

his own 10-metre line, picking and

charging through the middle of

the ruck. With the defence closing

in, an excellent dummy saw the

Tongan gallop over unopposed,

beaming ear to ear as he raced

over untouched.

Vailanu continued to be a menace

with ball in hand, charging into contact

with glee whenever the chance arose.

Glasgow’s ability to recycle the ball

through the phases would earn them

a penalty straight in front of the posts,

a chance Domingo Miotti would duly

dispatch for an 8-0 lead on the half-hour

mark.

Benetton: Rhyno Smith, Ignacio Mendy, Jaoquin Riera (Marcus Watson, rep: ‘56), Marco

Zanon, Mattia Bellini, Giacomo Da Re, Dewaldt Duvenage (Alessandro Garbisi, rep: ‘50),

Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro (Thomas Gallo, rep: ‘40), Federico Zani (Manuel Arroyo, rep: ‘45),

Tiziano Pasquali (Filippo Alongi, rep ‘68), Scott Scrafton (Marco Lazzaroni, rep ‘62), Carl

Wegner, Giovanni Pettinelli (Alessandro Izekor, rep: ‘56), Sebastian Negri Da Ollegio (Braam

Steyn, rep ‘62), Henry Time-Stowers (Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro 52-58)

A fractious opening to the half would

give way to a scintillating conclusion,

as the Warriors would bring their

supporters to their feet twice within a

matter of minutes. There was a distinctly

Argentinian flavour to the home side’s

second of the evening, as Jamie Dobie’s

76 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


chip ahead was regathered by Miotti.

The fly-half timed his draw and pass

perfectly to ride a high tackle from

Rhyno Smith – for which the Benetton

man earned a yellow card – to send

Sebastian Cancelliere over under the

posts. The conversion made it 15-0.

Just moments later, the Scotstoun crowd

would be roaring their approval once

more. A free-flowing first-phase move

saw Josh McKay rip through a gap to

race from 22 to 22, leaving the full-back

with the simplest of tasks to send Stafford

McDowall over unopposed. Miotti

added the extras, and Glasgow had a

22-0 lead at the interval.

The Warriors would pick up where they

left off at the start of the second period,

dominating both possession and territory

as they went in search of a bonus-point.

Only an intervention from Thomas Gallo

would prevent the fourth try from arriving

from a lineout maul on 47 minutes,

and Glasgow didn’t hang around in

making their advantage count. Fraser

Brown’s lineout throw to Alex Samuel

was pinpoint, before the hooker tucked

himself away at the back of the maul

to rumble over for the score. Miotti’s

conversion drifted wide, but the Warriors

were in total control.

Try number five would arrive in almost

identical fashion after 57 minutes, with

only the try-scorer changing in the

process. After Euan Ferrie was denied

images: inpho.ie

a debut try moments after coming off

the bench by some last-ditch defence,

another short-range lineout maul saw

Vailanu smuggled over for his second of

the night.

Glasgow’s domination was total, with

replacement props Nathan McBeth and

Simon Berghan demolishing the Benetton

scrum on multiple occasions as Glasgow

pressed for try number six. Ferrie would

once again go close, whilst Sean

Kennedy’s dart for the line almost saw

the scrum-half dot down for the score.

When the try did arrive, it came from

a familiar scorer – albeit in somewhat

unconventional fashion. Kyle Steyn’s

expert steal at the breakdown won his

side a penalty, with the eagle-eyed

Miotti spotting space in the backfield

and booting long. Rufus McLean’s

pace saw him outstrip the defence,

only to tie himself in knots as he looked

to gather the ball. The winger would

eventually dive on the loose ball to score,

completing the bonus point win.

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 77


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Franco Smith

Head Coach

Franco Smith is a former South Africa

international, playing nine times for the

Springboks between 1997 and 1999.

He played for most of his career in his

native South Africa, before spells in

Wales and Italy. Smith’s coaching career

has lasted almost two decades, including

a period as head coach of Italy. He

was appointed head coach of Glasgow

Warriors ahead of the 2022/23 season.

Kyle Steyn

Captain

Kyle Steyn was named Glasgow

Warriors captain ahead of the 2022/23

season and has made more than 50

appearances for the club. The Scotland

international is South African-born,

and qualifies through his Glasgowborn

mother. The 28-year-old moved

to the Scotstoun club in 2019. He has

represented Scotland in both Sevens

and XV, and made his full debut in 2020

against France.

glasgow squad

FORWARDS

LEWIS BEAN

LOCK

SIMON BERGHAN

PROP

JAMIE BHATTI

PROP

FRASER BROWN

HOOKER

GREGOR BROWN

FLANKER

SCOTT CUMMINGS

LOCK

RORY DARGE

FLANKER

ALLAN DELL

PROP

JACK DEMPSEY

FLANKER

JP DU PREEZ

LOCK

ZANDER FAGERSON

PROP

MATT FAGERSON

FLANKER

EUAN FERRIE

LOCK

TOM GORDON

FLANKER

RICHIE GRAY

LOCK

OLI KEBBLE

PROP

SINTU MANJEZI

LOCK

JONNY MATTHEWS

HOOKER

NATHAN MCBETH

PROP

ALLY MILLER

FLANKER

ENRIQUE PIERETTO HEILAND

PROP

ALEX SAMUEL

LOCK

LUCIO SORDONI

PROP

GEORGE TURNER

HOOKER

SIONE VAILANU

FLANKER

MURPHY WALKER

PROP

RYAN WILSON

FLANKER

BACKS

SEBASTIAN CANCELLIERE

WING

JAMIE DOBIE

SCRUM-HALF

WALTER FIFITA

WING

COLE FORBES

WING

JOEL HODGSON

FLY-HALF

GEORGE HORNE

SCRUM-HALF

SAM JOHNSON

CENTRE

HUW JONES

CENTRE

TOM JORDAN

FLY-HALF

SEAN KENNEDY

SCRUM-HALF

STAFFORD MCDOWALL

CENTRE

JOSH MCKAY

FULLBACK

RUFUS MCLEAN

WING

DOMINGO MIOTTI

FLY-HALF

ALI PRICE

SCRUM-HALF

OLLIE SMITH

FULLBACK

KYLE STEYN

WING

ROSS THOMPSON

FLY-HALF

SIONE TUIPULOTU

CENTRE

DUNCAN WEIR

FLY-HALF

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 79


BY DES BERRY

TULLOW RFC

Some are all about being deeply

embedded in the local community.

Some want to maintain their

status as a small social club, a

place where friends gather.

Others want it all. They want to be at the

heart of the community and to climb the

ladders that are the various Leagues all

the way to the All-Ireland League.

Tullow is one of those clubs that is always

reaching for the stars from the relatively

humble playing ground of Division 1B of

the Leinster Junior League.

“The club must follow the team. That is the

view in Tullow,” says Director of Rugby

Tom Nolan.

“We would love to progress onto the AIL.

We have good young players at the club

and good people around them.”

Tom doesn’t have to look too far to find

the recipe for this type of success.

“Enniscorthy has a wonderful model

there, building from within. Financially, it

is the only sustainable model to get to the

AIL in a rural club.”

Part of the journey has to be the progress

in the quality of the facilities available.

An artificial pitch, first suggested by Sean

Club in

Focus

The definition of

success is different for

every Junior club.

O’Brien and Tom, was seen as a sign of

moving with the times.

In May 2019, Tullow started the

€500,000 project by getting it passed

at an Annual General Meeting before

securing planning permission and finance

from a Leader grant, a rural development

designed to stimulate economic activity,

valued at 75% of the total cost.

A 3G Project Team of Noel Nolan,

Paddy Browne, Pat Byrne, Eddie Horkan,

Ger O’Brien, Madeline Ryan and Tom

got to work on making the dream a

reality.

The Project required that the Leader grant

application, the Planning application and

the Loan application had to be pursued

and guaranteed. They were.

“Sean played a big part by driving it on

and assuring any of the doubters in the

club that it was the right thing to do for

Tullow,” states Tom.

“He has proved to be correct. The

benefits are there to be seen. Training is

never cancelled. The numbers at underage

have swollen.”

Like everyone else, Tullow had to

overcome the adversity of the pandemic

at a time when they had just broken

ground on the new 3G pitch.

“It happened the week of lockdown.

We started on the Tuesday of that week

and we had to remove all the machinery

from the site on Thursday, when the

government announcement came. All that

was left was a big hole running down the

middle of the pitch.

“It was a big disappointment. But, we had

to accept it for the good of all,” he says.

“We got the go-ahead when construction

opened back up. It didn’t take us long to

complete the work. It probably helped

that there was no one else out in the

80 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


club at the time, other than those directly

involved in the project.

“Probably, the biggest body-blow during

it came when our club stalwart Ger

O’Brien passed away from Covid-related

illness. He was instrumental in so much of

what was going on in the club.”

As time moved on and the country

opened up again, the value of the new

pitch was clear to see.

“We are into the second season of it

being used. It is only now we see the full

value of it. It has come into its own,” Tom

says.

“Previously, we were spending so much

money on repairing the grass pitches,

it was a joke. It was no fault of the

contractors, or anyone else. It was simply

footfall.

“The artificial surface has led to

increased numbers into the club and it

has definitely increased the number of

smiles from ‘mammies’ going out the

gate because the car is not destroyed

with muck and the kids are not covered

head-to-toe in it.

“On Sunday mornings, the numbers

at minis have grown. The last time I

was down, there were 230 little heads

running around from ages six-to-12.

“They come into us from Baltinglass,

Rathvilly, Fenagh, down towards the

Fighting Cocks area, down to the borders

of Wexford and Wicklow and, of course,

Tullow.

“It is almost a case of never turning out

the lights. The pitch is constantly in use

through the various teams in the club and

the schools in the area, both primary and

secondary, coming out to play on it.

“In total, we reach out to about 39

schools through the Leinster programme,

some of which are very small rural

places. There could be as few as 30 in

some of them.”

The drive to improve didn’t end on the

pitch. In September, a revamp of the

gymnasium was completed.

“It included construction work on the

rooms, clearing them out, and a total

refurbishment of all machines, bringing

them up to date. That has been wellreceived

by the players.

“It is also offered as a facility to nonplaying

members, who pay €100 for

access to the gym and the walking track.

That’s not too bad a deal.”

This desire to attract people to the club is

a reflection of the community as a whole.

“The club is getting its buzz back. Covid

changed the culture of general life

around the town. People got used to

staying at home. The bars were empty.

It has started to turn around. I feel it is

coming back.

“We had a local derby against Carlow

last month. There was a great crowd

there and a great atmosphere at Oak

Park. We are lucky in the League this

year. We have Wicklow, Athy and

Carlow in 1B. Those local rivalries

always generate interest.”

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 81


Try Leinster’s Next Big Dish

from Mao At Home today


Of course, Sean O’Brien has long been

held up as Tullow’s main man. The

Ireland and British & Irish Lions flanker’s

application to rejoin his old club was

dashed for this season.

“It was a disappointment for us all in

Tullow, a disappointment for Sean too,”

adds Tom.

“It would have been a real crowd-pleaser

here and it would have brought closure to

his career. The rules are the rules. They

are there for the best intentions of all.

“We went through the process and the

viewpoint was taken by the administrators

of the game that it wasn’t appropriate

for Sean to play Junior rugby. It wasn’t

anything personal. We move on.

“He still has a big role to play at the club

and we still haven’t given up the hope

that he will wear the jersey again.”

O’Brien’s pioneering career has opened

the door for the likes of Lansdowne prop

Adam Deay, Buccaneers and Connacht’s

front row forward Charlie Ward and

talented Old Belvedere, Leinster and

Ireland out-half Dannah O’Brien.

“It is very important we have these

players coming through the club. It

gives the kids someone to look up to, to

show them it can be done. For example,

Dannah was down coaching the U14

girls recently.”

It is this commitment to give back that

drives Tullow forward.


Robert McDerm

Former President of Leinster

Rugby, Robert McDermott,

recently achieved one of his

life’s ambitions when he

climbed to Mount Everest Base

Camp. Here in his own words is

the story of that adventure...

Most people have their bucket list:

a list of things they most want to

do in their lifetime. This Autumn,

I was fortunate to tick off one

item from my bucket list. It was a

lifelong ambition of mine to get to

Everest Base camp.

Mount Everest is the highest mountain in

the world at 8,848 metres. Many people

have tried to climb Everest. Over the

years it has been the setting for many

films and documentaries. It is located in

the Himalayas. The China - Nepal border

runs across its summit. Base Camp is at

an altitude of 5,510 metres. That was

my target. I set off in mid-September

with my friend Dave Clancy who I met

in college in 1980. We have stayed in

touch since. The Base Camp expedition

was expertly led by Pat Falvey, a legend

in the mountaineering world. Pat runs

his adventure company from Kerry. He

has summited Everest twice and was the

first person in the world to complete the

Seven Summits twice. For good measure

he has also reached the North and South

Poles. It was great to have his experience

on our trip and his stories of his exploits

had us all enthralled.

Our group of ten flew from Dublin

to Kathmandu, via Istanbul. Nepal

suffered a huge earthquake in 2015

registering 7.8 on the Richter scale which

caused devastation in Kathmandu and

surrounding areas. The after-effects of the

quake can still be seen in the city today.

By western standards there were a lot of

differences as we drove to our hotel. The

first difference we noticed was the lack of

street signs and traffic lights which lead

to some interesting driving habits. The

electric cables which were only a little

above head height were also a source

of awe for our group. Kathmandu is a

city of One Thousand Temples and the

locals are very good at going to one

most days. The Monkey Temple, the city

crematorium and the Temple of the Virgin

Goddess were sights worth seeing and

totally different to our western culture.

Some of us had last minute shopping of

mountain gear we required, especially

84 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


ott - Everest

sleeping bags that were good to -10

degrees celsius.

After a couple of days acclimatising and

resting, we had a 4am start to make it

to the airport and catch the first flight to

Lukla airport in the mountains. Lukla is

known as the most dangerous airport in

the world. It is 527 metres in length and

goes uphill on landing. Once we claimed

our bags we met our three local guides

for our adventure, as well as the Sherpas

who carried our luggage for the duration

of our trip. This left us with a rucksack

which contained our daily essentials.

These Sherpas are the real heroes of the

trip as they ferried goods up and down

the mountain. Their stamina never ceased

to amaze us all. There is no motorised

transport on the mountains and the only

way of moving about is on foot or on

horseback. As we started our journey

we were warned to take it easy as we

were now at altitude. We could all feel

the shortage of air in our breathing. It is

quite a shock to the system to experience

high altitude for the first time. Our group

had different experiences of it, some with

dizziness, others had an upset stomach.

Personally, the first few nights I awoke

suddenly due to shortness of breath.

Definitely a good way to ruin your night’s

sleep!

Day 2 of the trek was probably the

toughest day as we climbed into Namche

Bazar, a trading post town in the

Himalayas. It is at 3,440 metres above

sea level and took us seven hours trekking

to reach it. We stayed here for two nights

which was useful for acclimatisation

and on our second day here we trekked

to the famous Everest Hotel at 3,880

metres which offered us our first view of

Mount Everest. This was quite a thrilling

experience and quite moving as well.

You now know you are at high altitude

because you are looking down at the

helicopters flying below you as they make

their way to Base Camp.

All in all it took eight days to get to

Base Camp and four to return. As you

get higher the weather gets colder and

the facilities get sparser. The tea houses

we stayed in are very welcoming and

are mainly made from plywood so it is

mainly shelter they offer, not warmth. The

main room in the house has a big fire.

The primary source of fuel for this fire

comes from yak dung. Yaks are similar

to cows and are used for transport and

food. The food is basic but adequate and

bearing in mind that everything has to be

carried the variety is limited. Also as you

climb you can see the lack of birds and

vegetation. The nearer you get to Base

Camp the terrain is made up mostly of

rocks and boulders which dominate the

landscape. As you approach Base Camp

the surrounding glaciers are melting due

to climate change. This makes for some

interesting sound effects beneath your

feet! We were all elated on reaching

Base Camp. The camp was quite full with

lots of different nationalities celebrating

their achievement. We spent an hour

there before we had to return to Gorak

Shep, the nearest village to Base Camp

which sits on a frozen lake.

The scenery of the snow capped

mountains and the quietness are

ingrained in my memory as is the

friendliness of the people and their

smiling faces. Their happiness with their

lot in life is a wonder given that they

lack most of our western comforts. Their

greeting of “Namaste”, which translates

to ‘I see the good in you’, is a great motto

to live your life by. I am asked did I enjoy

the holiday? A holiday it was not, an

experience of a lifetime it most definitely

was. I would definitely recommend it if

you have an interest in heading to Base

Camp, but fitness is required along with

mental strength as you will have some

bad days on the trip, but it is worth it.”

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 85


86 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


Charlie

Tector

Charlie

Tector doesn’t

remember the

first time

he touched a

rugby ball,

but he has

seen the photo

a hundred

times.

THE ACADEMY

INTERVIEW

BY PAUL CAHILL

He’s only three or four years

old outside his grandad’s house

running with a small, soft rugby

ball.

It’s appropriate that the photo was taken

there as the Tector family are quite sure

it’s his grandad’s genes that Charlie has

inherited.

“My Grandad, Neville, is big into his

rugby,” says the Leinster Rugby Academy

out-half.

“He goes to all of my games. He was

in Energia Park on Friday for the Chile

game too.”

Whether or not the sporty gene did skip

a generation from Neville to Charlie is

impossible to confirm, but it’s the story the

Tector family are happy to tell.

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 87


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on 01 470 0130 or email mcostello@bdo.ie

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“My parents, Neil and Anne weren’t

particularly sporty. Dad says he didn’t

play anything anyway, so whether he

was lying or not I don’t know. Everyone

says I got it off grandad. He loves that

everyone is saying that.”

With Neville Tector attending as many

of Charlie’s games as he can, he has

certainly had value for money in recent

times.

An Irish U20 Six Nations success and

most recently, his Leinster Rugby debut

against Scarlets and a challenge match

against a World Cup qualifier, Chile.

That’s all just in the last 12 months.

Quite the rollercoaster for Charlie, as

well as Neville.

From Rathnure in county Wexford,

Charlie’s first action in organised rugby

was down the road with Enniscorthy RFC.

“I went down to Enniscorthy at about

U-10s. I really enjoyed it there. I played

until about U-13s when I moved to

Kilkenny College.”

Like most kids, Charlie was playing any

sport he could. Growing up next door to

St Anne’s GAA Club meant hurling would

be prominent.

“I played a lot of hurling, but gave it up

at U-18 with the school team. I played a

couple of games for the Wexford minor

team when I was U-17.

“The following year I also made the U-18

Leinster Rugby Schools team so I had to

pick one. So that’s when I stopped playing

hurling. I continued to play a little bit with

my club, Rathnure. I still get the odd text to

come down from them.

“My hurling coaches from Rathnure

actually came to all of my Ireland U-20

games in Cork. They loved it. They

wouldn’t know too much about rugby but

they loved it.”

Having represented the Wexford minor

team a year early, there was surely an

urge to see how far he could go with the

small ball.

But, with the groundwork put in by his

grandfather, rugby was his number one

love.

“From day one, I always had a passion for

rugby. More than anything else I played.

“I used to play soccer and that always

used to clash with rugby. If matches

were on the same day, it wasn’t even a

question. I was always picking rugby. I

tried to balance it until I was about 16.

“When I had to choose between Leinster

and Wexford at U-18, that’s when I made

the final call.”

That final call has certainly worked out

well.

After choosing the rugby path as an

18-year-old, everything came to a stop

with Covid-19. That meant nearly two

years of no games.

But, when his next big opportunity arose,

he certainly took it with both hands.

Having been selected for the Ireland

U-20 side for the 2022 Six Nations

campaign, he was about to embark on

an incredible journey.

In the opening game, Tector kicked 13

points in a 53-5 win over Wales.

They then faced a tough test against

France in Aix-en-Provence. France led

16-10 with just 30 seconds left on the

clock.

Inside-centre, Ben Brownlee burst over the

French line to make it a one-point game

as the clock went into the red. Charlie

Tector would decide the result.

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 89


The senior

players have

been brilliant.

I can’t say

enough good

things about

them because

they’re such

top class

players.

“When you look back on it, it didn’t look

that hard a kick. But, in that moment

when, I don’t how many fans were there,

and the whole crowd was against you.

“It was a typical French crowd and there

were school kids screaming and the noise

that was going on during that kick, it was

insane. It certainly made the kick a lot

tougher than it was. It was a big pressure

moment. It was incredible when I saw it

go over.”

Ireland then beat Italy 39-12 before

travelling to face England.

With the game level at 17 points apiece

at the break, Ireland kicked on in the

second half to win 42-27, with Tector

converting seven kicks for 17 points.

They were now just one game away

from a Grand Slam with Scotland

standing in their way.

In amongst the capacity crowd at

Musgrave Park in Cork, was Neville

Tector, enjoying another day out

watching his grandson compete.

Any pre-game nerves were quickly

eradicated as Ireland raced into a 33-0

lead at half time, before claiming a 59-5

win.

While the rest of the squad continued

the celebrations in Cork, Tector made his

way back to the family farm to help his

father.

Something that might sound unusual for

a young rugby player eager to celebrate

after a big win, but not to Charlie.

“I wasn’t forced to go back to the farm.

I like going home and getting out on

the farm. I feel like it relaxes me. It’s not

that Dad wants me home to work. I love

going home to the farm, just getting the

fresh air into me.

“It’s good having something away from

rugby. It’s something to take your mind

off things.”

Throughout this period, Tector was

working away in the Ken Wall

Centre of Excellence down in

Energia Park, trying to make his mark

in the Leinster Rugby setup.

“I came in at the very start of Covid, so

there were only eight or nine of us in the

group. Going in at 7:30am with Dave

Fagan and grinding out in the gym, I’d

never done anything like that.

“It was also a big change coming to

Dublin. Obviously, I’d never been in

Dublin too much, except as a child to go

shopping or something like that.”

90 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


It wasn’t all plain sailing for the aspiring

out-half as a serious injury hampered his

progress. But, instead of letting it get him

down, it seemed to focus his mind even

more.

“I got injured a week before an

Ireland U-20s camp when I was a year

underage. I tore my achilles, so that put

me out for about eight or nine months.

“I did a lot of rehab in the Sub-Academy

and then it was always building towards

the Ireland U-20s. That’s the target they

set.

“That’s what we all strive to achieve

while in the Sub-Academy, as that will

really improve your chances of getting an

Academy contract.”

Not long after that Six Nations success,

Tector was given the news he was hoping

for. The hard work had paid off and he

had earned a Leinster Rugby Academy

contract.

With that, came a move up to UCD

alongside the senior squad. A move that

Tector is loving.

“It’s been a really smooth transition, to be

honest. All of the lads make it really easy

for you.

“We were given a small taste of it while

in the Sub-Academy, so it wasn’t too alien

when we came up. For example, we had

quite a few Sub-Academy lads training

with us today, so they can see how we

train in UCD.

“The senior players have been brilliant. I

can’t say enough good things about them

because they’re such top class players.

You saw Ross last weekend getting his

chance with Ireland and really taking it.

“Taking as much experience from them as

I can is what I want to achieve here.”

After a few months of hard work in UCD,

Tector got the news that every young

player wants to hear. He was in the

matchday 23 travelling to Scarlets.

“I got the nod to say that I would be on

the bench and I was really pleased about

that. I just tried to do as much prep as I

could and watch as much Scarlets video

as I could.

“The week was short because it was a

Friday game. It’s just taking your chance

when you get it. It was really special to

get that first cap.”

As Tector entered the fray, he was joined

by his former Irish U-20 teammate Ben

Brownlee, who was also on to make his

debut.

The duo have been through quite a lot in

a short space of time.

“We’re building a good relationship.

We went through Ireland U-20s together

and making our debut together. So, it’s a

good relationship we’re building so I’m

pleased with it.”

A few weeks later, Leinster Rugby

welcomed the Chile national team to

Energia Park. The South American’s have

qualified for next year’s Rugby World

Cup in France.

Tector was named at out-half with his

reliable inside-centre, Ben Brownlee

named at 12 in a game where Leinster

would run out 40-3 winners.

“It was quite surreal playing a team that

are going to the World Cup. It was a

great experience playing an international

match.

“It was a physical game but it was great

to get another senior appearance and

another win.”

With a lot of accomplishments made in

the last 12 months, Tector is clear on what

he needs to do to keep progressing.

“I need to just keep working away.

Hopefully I can help get Lansdowne

going again. We had a tough start to the

AIL season but I think we can turn things

around.

“Playing matches is how you sharpen

up big time. If you can get a good 60

minutes with Lansdowne on the weekend,

it makes such a difference. You’re trying

to implement stuff from here into your club

and you need matches to do that.”

The most recent chapters in Charlie

Tector’s rugby career have certainly been

exciting. The next few are sure to be an

exciting ride, and Neville Tector will be

there to watch it all.

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 91


Leinster

Rugby

Academy

Year

Three:

92 | www.leinsterrugby.ie

Marcus Hanan (3) #1295

DOB 3 July 2000

FROM Clane, Co Kildare

HEIGHT 1.85m (6’ 0”)

WEIGHT 112kg (17st 9 lbs)

POSITION Loosehead prop

SCHOOL Salesian College, Celbridge

CLUB Clane RFC

HONOURS Ireland U-20 (2 caps)

John McKee (6) #1307

DOB 15 February 2000

FROM Belfast

HEIGHT 1.85m ( 6’ 0”)

WEIGHT 108kg (17st 0lbs)

POSITION Hooker

SCHOOL Campbell College

CLUB Terenure College RFC

HONOURS Ireland U-20 (10 caps)

Seán O’Brien (3) #1297

DOB 31 July 2000

FROM Pittsburgh, PA, USA

HEIGHT 1.91m ( 6 ’ 3”)

WEIGHT 106kg ( 16st 10lbs)

POSITION Back Row

SCHOOL Blackrock College

CLUB UCD RFC

HONOURS Ireland U-20 (3 caps)

Max O’Reilly (10) #1291

DOB 26 February 2000

FROM Long Island, USA

HEIGHT 1.86m (6’ 1”)

WEIGHT 90kg (14st 2lbs)

POSITION Full-back

SCHOOL St Gerard’s School

CLUB DUFC

HONOURS Ireland U-20 (3 caps)

Andrew Smith (2) #1292

DOB 21 July 2000

FROM Dublin

HEIGHT 1.8 m (5’ 11”)

WEIGHT 93kg (14st 9lbs)

POSITION Back Three

SCHOOL St Michael’s College

CLUB Clontarf FC

HONOURS Ireland U-20 (3 caps)

Leinster

Rugby

Academy

Year

Two:

Alex Soroka (6) #1296

DOB 19 February 2001

FROM Cork

HEIGHT 1.95m (6’ 5”)

WEIGHT 107kg (16st 12lbs)

POSITION Back Row

SCHOOL Belvedere College

CLUB Clontarf FC

HONOURS Ireland U-20 (8 caps)

Jack Boyle

DOB 10 March 2002

FROM Dublin

HEIGHT 1.86m (6’ 1”)

WEIGHT 108kg (17st 0lbs)

POSITION Loosehead prop

SCHOOL St Michael’s College

CLUB UCD RFC

HONOURS Ireland U-20 (9 caps)

Lee Barron (2) #1308

DOB 15 February 2001

FROM Dublin

HEIGHT 1.93m (6’ 3”)

WEIGHT 107kg (16st 12 lbs)

POSITION Hooker

SCHOOL St Michael’s College

CLUB DUFC

HONOURS Ireland U-20 (2 caps)

Chris Cosgrave (2) #1305

DOB 24 July 2001

FROM Dublin

HEIGHT 1.85m (6’ 0”)

WEIGHT 86kg (13st 7lbs)

POSITION Back Three

SCHOOL St Michael’s College

CLUB UCD RFC

HONOURS Ireland U-20 (3 caps)

Temi Lasisi (1) #1304

DOB 9 May 2001

FROM Enniscorthy, Co Wexford

HEIGHT 1.83m (6’ 0 “)

WEIGHT 116.5kg (18st 5lbs)

POSITION Tighthead prop

SCHOOL CBS Enniscorthy

CLUB Lansdowne FC/Enniscorthy RFC

HONOURS Ireland U-20 (3 caps)

(3) = Leinster Rugby Senior caps


Ben Murphy (1) #1309

DOB 23 April 2001

FROM Bray

HEIGHT 1.76m (5’ 8”)

WEIGHT 80kg (12st 8lbs)

POSITION Scrum-half

SCHOOL Presentation College, Bray

CLUB Clontarf FC

HONOURS Ireland U-20 (3 caps)

Leinster

Rugby

Academy

Year

One:

Rob Russell (8) #1302

DOB 13 January 1999

FROM Dublin

HEIGHT 1.83m (6’ 0”)

WEIGHT 91kg (14st 5lbs)

POSITION Back Three

SCHOOL St Michael’s College

CLUB DUFC

HONOURS Ireland U-20 (5 caps)

Ben Brownlee (1) #1313

DOB 28 September 2002

FROM Dublin

HEIGHT 1.87m (6’ 2”)

WEIGHT 100kg (15st 11lbs)

POSITION Centre

SCHOOL Blackrock College

CLUB UCD RFC

HONOURS Ireland U-20 (3 caps)

James Culhane

DOB 22 October 2002

FROM Enniskerry, Co Wicklow

HEIGHT 1.94m (6’ 4”)

WEIGHT 110kg (17st 5lbs)

POSITION Back Row

SCHOOL Blackrock College

CLUB UCD RFC

HONOURS Ireland U-20 (5 caps)

Aitzol Arenzana-King

DOB 15 June 2002

FROM Gormanston, Co Meath

HEIGHT 1.91m (6’ 3”)

WEIGHT 97.5kg (15st 5lbs)

POSITION Back Three

SCHOOL Gormanston College/CUS

CLUB Clontarf FC/Balbriggan RFC

HONOURS Ireland U-20 (8 caps)

Diarmuid Mangan

DOB 6 March 2003

FROM Kildare

HEIGHT 1.93 m (6’ 4”)

WEIGHT 106kg (16st 10lbs)

POSITION Back Row

SCHOOL Newbridge College

CLUB UCD RFC

HONOURS Ireland U-20 (6 caps)

Rory McGuire

DOB 26 August 2002

FROM Dublin

HEIGHT 1.93m (6’ 4”)

WEIGHT 118kg (18st 8lbs)

POSITION Tightead prop

SCHOOL Blackrock College

CLUB UCD RFC

HONOURS Ireland U-20 (5 caps)

Sam Prendergast

DOB 12 February 2003

FROM Kildare

HEIGHT 1.94m (6’ 4”)

WEIGHT 91kg (14st 5lbs)

POSITION Out-half

SCHOOL Newbridge College

CLUB Lansdowne FC

HONOURS Ireland U-20 (4 caps)

Charlie Tector (1) #1314

DOB 28 March 2002

FROM Wexford

HEIGHT 1.89 m (6’ 2”)

WEIGHT 94kg (14st 11lbs)

POSITION Out-half

SCHOOL Kilkenny College

CLUB Lansdowne FC

HONOURS Ireland U-20 (5 caps)

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 93


fixtures and

results 2022/23

Date

17/09

23/09

30/09

08/10

14/10

22/10

28/10

KO/

Result

Opposiotion Venue 15 14 13 12 11 10 9 1 2

W

29-33 URC ZEBRE Stadio Sergio

Lanfranchi

O’REILLY RUSSELL OSBORNE NGATAI

KEARNEY

1T

R. BYRNE

C4

W

42-10 URC BENETTON RDS Arena O’BRIEN LARMOUR RINGROSE HENSHAW KEARNEY FRAWLEY

3C

W

13-20 URC ULSTER Kingspan

Stadium

W

54-34

URC

CELL C

SHARKS

O’BRIEN LARMOUR RINGROSE HENSHAW KEARNEY

RDS Arena O’BRIEN LARMOUR

HENSHAW

1T

NGATAI

RUSSELL

1T

R. BYRNE

2C 2P

SEXTON

1T, 7C

W

0-10 URC CONNACHT Sportsground O’BRIEN TURNER RINGROSE NGATAI RUSSELL R. BYRNE

1C

W

27-13 URC MUNSTER Aviva

Stadium

W

5-35 URC SCARLETS Parc y

Scarlets

FRAWLEY O’BRIEN RINGROSE HENSHAW OSBORNE

COSGRAVE

1T

RUSSELL

1T

TURNER NGATAI KEARNEY

SEXTON

2C, 1P

R. BYRNE

3C

MCGRATH

1T

MCGRATH

1T

MCGRATH

MCGRATH

FOLEY

1T

MCGRATH

1T

E BYRNE

PORTER

PORTER

PORTER

1T

KELLEHER

SHEEHAN

4T

SHEEHAN

1T

SHEEHAN

E. BYRNE SHEEHAN

HEALY

SHEEHAN

1T

MCGRATH E. BYRNE MCKEE

26/11 15:15 URC GLASGOW RDS Arena

03/12 19:35 URC ULSTER RDS Arena

10/12 14:00 HCC RACING 92

Stade

Océane

16/12 20:00 HCC GLOUCESTER RDS Arena

26/12 19:35 URC MUNSTER

Thomond

Park

01/01 19:35 URC CONNACHT RDS Arena

07/01 19:35 URC OSPREYS

Swansea.

com Stadium

14/01 13:00 HCC GLOUCESTER Kingsholm

21/01 15:15 HCC RACING 92

28/01 17:00 URC CARDIFF

RUGBY

18/02 19:35 URC DRAGONS

RFC

04/03 17:05 URC EDINBURGH

24/03 19:35 URC DHL

STORMERS

15/04 14:00 URC EMIRATES

LIONS

22/04 16:05 URC VODACOM

BULLS

Aviva

Stadium

RDS Arena

RDS Arena

DAM Health

Stadium

RDS Arena

Emirates

Airline Park

Loftus

Versfeld

94 | www.leinsterrugby.ie


3 4 5 6 7 8 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23

ALAALATOA

MOLONY

JENKINS

1T

RUDDOCK

T2

ALAALATOA MOLONY JENKINS BAIRD

ALAALATOA MOLONY JENKINS

ALAALATOA

MOLONY

JENKINS

2T

BAIRD

1T

PENNY DEEGAN MCKEE MILNE ABDALADZE DEENY SOROKA MCCARTHY FRAWLEY CONNORS

VAN DER FLIER

1T

DORIS KELLEHER E. BYRNE HEALY MCCARTHY CONNORS FOLEY

R. BYRNE

3C

NGATAI

VAN DER FLIER CONAN MCKEE E. BYRNE ABDALADZE RYAN CONNORS MCCARTHY SEXTON NGATAI

BAIRD CONNORS RUDDOCK

MCKEE

1T

HEALY ABDALADZE RYAN MOLONEY FOLEY BYRNE

FURLONG MOLONY RYAN DORIS VAN DER FLIER CONAN MCKEE PORTER ALAALATOA MCCARTHY MOLONEY MCCARTHY

ALA’ALATOA JENKINS RYAN DEEGAN

CLARKSON

1T

PENNY

1T

FRAWLEY

1P

DORRIS MCKEE PORTER CLARKSON MOLONY CONAN MCCARTHY R. BYRNE

RINGROSE

2T

HENSHAW

MOLONY JENKINS RUDDOCK PENNY DEEGAN MCELROY MILNE ABDALADZE DEENY MOLONEY MCCARTHY TECTOR BROWNLEE

RUSSELL

1T

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 95


matchday

Squads

officials

Jamie Osborne

Rob Russell

Liam Turner

Charlie Ngatai

Dave Kearney

Ross Byrne

Luke McGrath

15

14

13

12

11

10

9

FULL BACK

RIGHT WING

OUTSIDE CENTRE

INSIDE CENTRE

LEFT WING

FLY HALF

SCRUM HALF

Josh McKay

Sebastian Cancelliere

Kyle Steyn [C]

Stafford McDowall

Rufus McLean

Tom Jordan

George Horne

REFEREE:

MARIUS VD WESTHUIZEN

(SARU, 13TH COMPETITION GAME)

ASSISTANT REFEREE:

KEANE DAVISON (IRFU)

ASSISTANT REFEREE:

ANDY FOGARTY (IRFU)

TMO:

AJ JACOBS (SARU)

Ed Byrne

Rónan Kelleher

Thomas Clarkson

Ross Molony

Joe McCarthy

Rhys Ruddock [C]

Scott Penny

Max Deegan

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

LOOSE HEAD PROP

HOOKER

TIGHT HEAD PROP

SECOND ROW

SECOND ROW

BLINDSIDE FLANKER

OPENSIDE FLANKER

NUMBER 8

Oli Kebble

Fraser Brown

Murphy Walker

Sintu Manjezi

Alex Samuel

Gregor Brown

Sione Vailanu

Jack Dempsey

John McKee

Michael Milne

Vakh Abdaladze

Jason Jenkins

Ryan Baird

Cormac Foley

Harry Byrne

Chris Cosgrave

16

17

18

19

20

21

22

23

REPLACEMENT

REPLACEMENT

REPLACEMENT

REPLACEMENT

REPLACEMENT

REPLACEMENT

REPLACEMENT

REPLACEMENT

Johnny Matthews

Jamie Bhatti

Simon Berghan

JP du Preez

Lewis Bean

Euan Ferrie

Jamie Dobie

Ross Thompson


*Restrictions apply.

*


Parting Shot

September 2022

World Rugby Awards, Monte Carlo

Sporting Club, Monaco, France 20

Photo ©INPHO/World Rugby

Josh van der Flier of Ireland, winner

of the World Rugby Men’s 15s

Player of the Year in partnership

with Mastercard

www.leinsterrugby.ie | 99

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