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Tag Archives: Thomond Park

Anthony Foley honoured with bronze bust

A bust of the late Shannon RFC, Munster and Ireland rugby legend, Anthony Foley, was unveiled on Friday evening at Shannon RFC clubhouse, which is located in Thomond Park. Kilbaha based sculptor Seamus Connolly was commissioned to create the bust of the Killaloe man, who died suddenly in Paris on October 16, 2016. The 42 year old former back row forward was Munster Head Coach at the time of his passing. “It was an honour to be asked to commemorate Anthony. I was approached by Shannon Rugby Club. They wanted to put up a bust and of course I was very excited to do it. Also, there was a lot of pressure because Anthony was a hero for Shannon, Munster and Ireland. I tried to capture the essence of him,” Seamus Connolly told The Clare Champion. “You pick your pose and go ahead with it. After that you hope that everyone is going to be happy. The commissioners have seen …

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Axel’s death brought family to its knees

  The death of former Munster Head Coach, Anthony Foley brought his family to “their knees and many, many others also”. That’s according to his widow, Olive who penned a heart-rendering tribute to coincide with the anniversary of his unexpected death in a Paris hotel before Munster’s Pro 12 clash with Racing Metroin October 2016. The death of the 42 year-old father-of-two sparked a global outpouring of grief as tens of thousands of people wrote to the family to share their own personal memories and express their sympathy. A few weeks after his death, the #8Masses4No8 campaign, the “Axel Foley Memorial” appeal, set up by his son, Tony, secured worldwide support exceeding the capacity of his beloved Thomond Park in Limerick. Olive stated: “It goes without saying that the past year was one that no preparation could help with.  Losing Anthony in any circumstances, not least one with no forewarning brought us as a family to our knees and many, …

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Brexit forum at Thomond Park

As part of a nationwide Brexit roadshow, Enterprise Ireland will host a ‘Prepare for Brexit’ forum at Thomond Park in Limerick on Thursday. Launching the event, Minister of State for Employment and Small Business, Pat Breen said, “The majority of companies, large and small, will be affected by Brexit. The message is simple – prepare now and be fully equipped to meet both the challenges and the opportunities arising from Brexit. The UK continues to be Ireland’s main trading partner and the aim is to uphold these strong trade relations while also preparing Irish companies to look at new opportunities and expand their reach in international markets. “Time is of the essence for Irish companies in the Mid-West to prepare for Brexit. The Brexit SME Scorecard aims to highlight to individual companies and businesses some of the key operational areas that may be exposed and help them to begin preparing a strategy to deal with these challenges.” Part of Enterprise Ireland’s …

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Ennis RFC chase Munster U-18 title

THE meeting of Ennis and Garryowen in the Munster U-18 Cup final on Sunday is the biggest underage match that Ennis has ever played in, according to team coach John Colleran. “It’s the showpiece of Munster rugby at youths level and for a junior club like Ennis, it is massive. It shows the strength of the game at youths level in our club. It has come about as a result of the effort over the years by a lot of volunteers. It’s the culmination of all of that,” said Colleran, who is eagerly looking forward to the final. A coach with the club for more than a decade, Colleran has been involved with this group of players since they were at U-10 level. “One of the reasons I got involved with this group was because my son Jack had taken up the game. As a parent, I was there watching. I said I would like to have the experience of …

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Simon sleep out at Thomond Park

Mid West Simon will host its inaugural corporate sleep out at Thomond Park, Limerick on Saturday, November 12. The group is aiming to raise funds to support its work and it is also focusing on raising awareness of the homeless situation in the region. “While many of the statistics that are reported in the media are Dublin-centred, we have an equivalent problem in the Mid-West. As in the rest of the country, building in the Mid-West came to a complete standstill during the recession and we are now seeing the results, which is a dramatic shortage of affordable accommodation,” Mid West Simon general manager Jackie Bonfield said. In 2006, 93,419 houses were built nationally but by 2014, the number of new house builds had reduced to 11,016. The Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) notes Ireland will have to build 25,000 residential houses per year in order to cope with the housing crisis. “Consecutive governments have relied on the building …

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Global support for Axel memorial campaign

A MEMORIAL campaign for the late Munster head coach, Anthony ‘Axel’ Foley, has secured global support. The Axel Foley Memorial appeal, #8masses4no8, which was set up by his son, Tony, has already secured almost 30,000 Facebook likes, 3,500 more than the capacity of Thomond Park. The Foley family have been “overwhelmed” by messages of support from Killaloe, Limerick, all over the country, the United Kingdom, France, Australia, New Zealand and even missionaries in Africa and the Far East. Support has come from young and old, many of whom are not rugby fans. Tony has highlighted one message from sixth-year students at Beneavin College in Finglas, which captures everything this campaign is about – remembering his father and others who have gone. Last Saturday, Tony joined his eight-year-old brother, Dan and Munster players in the middle of Thomond Park at the end of the match for a charged rendition of the anthem Stand Up and Fight. More than 25,000 fans remained …

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Ennis students play at Thomond Park

THE past couple of months has seen plenty of activity at St Anne’s Special School in Ennis. As part of an Xcessible Youth Sport Initiative, the school has teamed up with Ennis Rugby Club to introduce tag rugby to some of their students. The initiative was held under the auspices of Munster Rugby and culminated with students and staff heading to Thomond Park to take on other schools who have also taken part in the programme throughout Munster. Donal McMahon was charged with running the programme on behalf of the local rugby club and had nothing but praise for all involved. “I was amazed at the enthusiasm and the skills which the students showed during the initiative. They were so quick to pick up the basic techniques and, obviously, enjoyed the programme. We had lots of fun and it was a hugely enjoyable project to be associated with. “Ennis Rugby Club has always been pro-active in teaming up with charities …

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Varley calls time on rugby career

An injury to his left foot during a training session in July 2013 has finally caught up with Munster’s Damien Varley. The 31-year-old hooker has three caps for Ireland and made 121 appearances for the province, scoring 12 tries. Damien, who lives near Killaloe, has only made one substitute appearance for the province this season in the victory over Leinster in October. He underwent surgery three months ago on the injury but has decided to retire after exhausting all possible avenues to a return. He played club rugby with Garryowen before joining the Munster set-up. He joined London Wasps in 2008 but returned to Munster the following year and shared in some of the provinces greatest moments. He started in Munster’s historic win over Australia in Thomond Park in November 2010 and was the starting hooker in the province’s Magners League winning Grand Final against Leinster in May 2011. Varley first represented Ireland against Australia in June 2010, and his …

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