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Club Beat: February 21

Club Beat: February 21

…Club news from around the provinces – Corinthians hit the catwalk…Keeping up with the Joneses…Shannon say goodbye to Thomond…Carrick gearing up for festival of Sevens action…

CONNACHT: CORINTHIANS HIT THE CATWALK

2007 marks Corinthians RFC’s 75th year in existence and the Galway club’s style council will be out in force next Wednesday (February 28) when they host a Fashion Show.


Six of the club’s ‘star’ players have been persuaded to shuffle down the catwalk on what is sure to be a memorable night for the AIB League club. Tickets, priced at €20 each, are selling fast – telephone 091-799215 for more information.


The event is being held at the Meyrick Hotel, formerly the Great Southern Hotel, in Eyre Square, kicking off with a champagne reception (7.30pm) followed by the show itself.


The Catwalk Modelling Agency are providing the models and the show is being compared by actress Maire Eilish Ni Fhartha, who plays Catriona in the popular TG4 soap ‘Ros Na Run.’


There will be many prizes on offer in the night’s raffle, with the Door Prize being a one-year membership at the Kingfisher Club in Renmore – worth over €600.


Meanwhile, Sligo RFC have confirmed that current Ulster out-half David Humphreys, who was capped 72 times for Ireland before his retirement last year, will be their special guest at their annual dinner dance on Saturday, April 21.


Humphreys has accepted an invitation from Sligo RFC President Tom Gilligan to be present at the event at the Sligo Park Hotel.


LEINSTER: KEEPING UP WITH THE JONESES


It was a great fillip for Leinster, and the province’s junior rugby sector in particular, to see Seapoint full-back Felix Jones hit the heights with the Ireland Under-20s earlier this month.


Jones scored two tries in Ireland’s U-20 Six Nations opener – a 17-15 comeback win over Wales – and he had another big part to play in a 19-16 victory for Eric Elwood’s Irish side over France, the reigning world champions, in Athlone.


See below as we find out a bit more about this exciting prospect.


FELIX JONES


Age: 19
Education: St. Andrew’s College; Currently studying Arts at UCD
Position: Full-Back
Club: Seapoint
Province: Leinster


Notable Achievements: Helped the Leinster Under-20s win this season’s U-20 Interprovincial championship, scoring a try in the 20-18 win over Ulster in the final. A late call-up for the injured Luke Fitzgerald, he crowned his Ireland U-20 debut, earlier this month, with two tries against Wales.


He could yet help Seapoint, the pre-tournament favourites, win this season’s AIB Junior Cup. The Dubliners beat Limavady in the quarter-finals two weeks ago, while Jones was on Six Nations duty, to qualify for the last-four. “That was one of the downsides of playing for Ireland,” he admits, “missing out on that cup game with Seapoint.”


Trivia: Has a ‘lucky’ pair of boxers for matches, and listens to Daft Punk in the lead-up to kick-off. His favourite ground is Seapoint’s own Kilbogget Park.


Quotes: “The Irish U-20 squad are a great bunch to be with. We’ve a great coach in Eric Elwood and an excellent management team.”


“Playing at Dubarry Park in Athlone is brilliant, there’s a great atmosphere there, especially for night games, and I hope to keep my place in the Irish side for the remainder of the Six Nations.”


“I played for the Irish U-19s and I was man of the match in one of their games – that was an early highlight. I’d like to keep progressing with the U-20s and after that, become a member of the Leinster Academy.”


MUNSTER: SHANNON SAY GOODBYE TO THOMOND


Last Saturday was an historic occasion for Shannon’s first team as they played their last AIB League game at Thomond Park before the ground’s redevelopment.


The Limerick club’s clash with Dungannon was a vital game in their bid to stay in the hunt for a four-in-a-row of Division One titles.


Shannon’s PRO Andrew McNamara confirmed: “We’re delighted that the club and the Munster Branch have come to a most amicable agreement in relation to the consequences of the redevelopment for Shannon.


“As it has been from the soundings, we stand wholeheartedly behind the venture. Since the early 1940s Shannon have been proud tenants of the famous ground and that pride will continue in abundance at the new and vastly improved Thomond Park.”


Shannon will play their remaining home league games this season at Coonagh.


Meanwhile, flanker Mark Ryan has been chosen as the Old Crescent RFC Player of the Year. He received his award, which is sponsored by Hanly Donnellan Auctioneers, from Old Crescent President Frank Larkin and Bill Hanly, the club’s Chairman of Rugby, at the recent President’s Night dinner in the Falls Hotel in Ennistymon.


The Limerick IT student, who represented the Irish Colleges team last year, has flourished under Crescent’s Welsh coach Mark Ring this term.


ULSTER: CARRICK GEARING UP FOR CARNIVAL OF SEVENS ACTION


The hugely successful Guinness-sponsored Carrick Sevens tournament is set to take place once more in May and application forms are now available for teams wishing to take part.


Recognised as one of the fastest growing Sevens events in the country, Carrickfergus RFC has organised their annual Sevens tournament for the past 34 years.


Taking place over the May Bank Holiday weekend, the competition, which includes teams from Ireland and the UK, will run from Friday, May 4 to Sunday, May 6.


The 12-team Under-20s competition, sponsored by Kukri Sportswear, takes place on the Friday with the winners claiming a complete team kit for their club.


20 teams will duel it out for the traditional Guinness Open Sevens on Saturday, which has a prize fund of STG£1500 and is aimed primarily at clubs in the Ulster Qualifying League.


Sunday’s Manvik Premier Sevens competition, which will include some heavyweight AIB League sides, has a pot of STG£3000, while STG£1000 is on offer in the Lombard Ladies Tens event.


Further information and application forms are available on www.carricksevens.co.uk, or from Michael Simms (tel: 0044 (0) 7849 718064).


Meanwhile, Wednesday, March 14 will be a landmark day in the life of Banbridge flanker Mark Waugh as he becomes the County Down club’s third Barbarian.


The Bann forward will follow in the footsteps of Tyrone Howe and Albert Finney by donning the famous black and white hoops of the Barbarians against the East Midlands next month.


Banbridge have a long-standing link with the Baa-Baas in the form of their respective team doctors, with Rathfriland man Donal O’Shaughnessy filling both roles.


The Mobbs Memorial match, between the Baa-Baas and the East Midlands, takes place at Bedford RFC (kick-off 7pm).