Galway’s two All Ireland League clubs are back in action in preparation for the new season.
Galwegians RFC will host its first senior home game against Connemara at 2.30pm on Saturday. This is Galwegians’ second Connacht Senior League fixture after a strong opening win over Sligo last weekend.
Galwegians RFC youth academy also kicks off on Saturday morning at the Dublin Road grounds. Mini rugby for under sevens to 12s begins at 10am, followed by under 13 to 19 youth squads from 11.30am.
Galwegians’ new president, Noel Leader, says the youth academy is a major strength for the club which he hopes will be translated to the club consolidating its position in the All Ireland League.
Leader, who has been a club stalwart for 40 years, first began playing underage rugby for the club in 1971 and rose to captain Galwegians to a Senior Cup victory 1983. His three sons Greg, Tadhg and Darragh have all progressed through the academy and this year Tadhg has been being awarded a Connacht development contract, having been selected for the Ireland u-20 squad.Mini rugby gets under way at Corinthians RFC on Saturday September 3.
Corinthians win club excellence
A well established institution at Cloonacauneen, the mini rugby section has been running for more than 30 years and has become synonymous with the development of young rugby talent in the province. Recent graduates include current Connacht players Johnny O Conor, Eoin Griffin, and Ronan Loughney, and Connacht academy manager Nigel Carolan.
The mini rugby ethos is based on fun, friendship, and player development, and Corinthians’ promise includes player development and inclusiveness, as well as first-class facilities and coaching.
Tommy Connelley, who worked as a professional coach for many years with the IRFU including a role as technical advisor with the senior squad, heads the coaching and rugby development team, which also includes former senior coach Kevin McCarthy and retired senior players Joe Joe Goram, Kieran Browne, and Loman Caufield.
This year Corinthians were awarded an IRFU Club Excellence Award - one of only eight clubs in the country - which recognises the organisational and management structures in the club and its commitment to excellence.
Registration for Corinthians’ mini rugby takes place on Saturday September 3 at 10am in Corinthian Park.