Jump to main content



Kyle Salutes The Class Of 2009

Kyle Salutes The Class Of 2009

The legendary Jack Kyle, a Grand Slam winner in 1948 and the man often heralded as the greatest Irish rugby player of all-time, spoke of his admiration for Ireland’s 2009 squad after they defeated Wales to crowned RBS 6 Nations Grand Slam champions.

The man who mastermined Ireland’s one and only Grand Slam prior to Saturday’s success was fulsome in his praise of Declan Kidney’s all-conquering squad.

Speaking after the 17-15 win over Wales, Jack Kyle said: “What a wonderful day and what a pleasure to be here today to see an Irish side, who fully deserved this Grand Slam, win it.

Google Ad Manager – 300×250 – In Article

“If there’s any side that deserved to win a Grand Slam, it’s this side. They have toiled so hard in recent years, they have won Triple Crowns but they have now got that final accolade.

“And that is wonderful and they will have that pleasure for the rest of their lives, that they are part of a Grand Slam side.”

Belfast man Kyle, who starred for Ireland during a 46-Test career and made his mark on the 1950 Lions tour to New Zealand and Australia, revelled in the drama of the final match of the 2009 RBS 6 Nations.

“Oh my goodness, at one moment you thought the Welshmen have got it.

“And then (Ronan) O’Gara’s drop goal. And you think, ‘will somebody blow the final whistle while we’re still up!’

“And when the final whistle went, there we were, we were able to rejoice after 61 years. It’s amazing that Ireland hasn’t won a Grand Slam in that time.

“But now they’ve done it, let’s hope they do it again.”

The 83-year-old was delighted to be present at the home of Welsh rugby to watch the Grand Slam baton being passed on to the current generation of Irish stars.

“The atmosphere has been something remarkable here. I’m so pleased to be here, that after 61 years we’ve seen an Irish side win this final accolade. It’s wonderful,” he added.