Henshaw and Bealham are deservedly named in Ireland’s Rugby World Cup 2023 squad

michael silke

Buccaneers duo Robbie Henshaw and Finlay Bealham have been named in Ireland’s 33 man squad for the 2023 Rugby World Cup.

Head Coach Andy Farrell’s squad departed on Thursday for France where their base camp will be in Tours. This is a great honour for the players and, of course, also for the Midlands club based at Dubarry Park.

Coosan native Robbie has 65 senior caps, a figure that could be quite higher but for injuries. He has also three caps with the British & Irish Lions with whom he toured to New Zealand and South Africa. The 31-year-old centre has scored 10 tries for Ireland. Henshaw gained international recognition while playing with Connacht with whom he won the PRO12 title, defeating his current province Leinster in the final.

Bealham was born in Canberra, Australia, and moved to Ireland in 2010. Irish qualified, he too progressed to the international stage by virtue of his performances for Connacht. The prop, who has also represented the Barbarians, has scored 3 tries in his 15 Ireland appearances.

Ireland, drawn in an exceedingly difficult side of the draw, open their RWC bid against Romania on Saturday afternoon. Kick off in Bordeaux is 2.30 p.m. We wish Robbie, Finlay and their teammates, management and support staff that includes Action Physio brothers Keith and Robbie Fox a highly successful RWC campaign. Carpe Diem, guys!

Meanwhile, you can watch all the Rugby World Cup games on the big screens at The Bounty; where better to savour the atmosphere especially for Ireland’s matches!

Frank Hopkins to Skipper Pirates

East Galway native Frank Hopkins has been named as Buccaneers Senior Captain for season 2023-24. He commenced playing rugby with Ballinasloe U11s and continued the sport when he attended Garbally College where he captained the junior team while in third year. Hopkins played in three Connacht Senior Schools Cup finals being on the victorious side when operating at scrumhalf but on the losing team when fly-half the following year.

As Ballinasloe had no U20 team, Charlie Couper invited him to join Buccaneers where he swiftly broke into the senior panel and was on the team that won the Energia All-Ireland League Division 2A title in dramatic circumstances. The unassuming man from Kiltormer, for whom he played hurling, modestly claims that he “was just happy to be involved” in the promotion winning squad!

He also enjoyed success while studying Mechanical Engineering at University of Limerick with the UL team winning the Colleges Division 2 All-Ireland title. He now works for Dutch company ASML based on the Intel campus in Leixlip.

Hopkins said this week that “it is a privilege to captain Buccaneers” and he “is excited for the challenge ahead.

“We are a relatively young side but we also have a lot of experience in a few key positions that will really help to develop the younger players. The coaching team has been incredible so far and that is reflected in the numbers we are consistently getting down to training. There is a great atmosphere around the club since day one of pre-season and hopefully that will be reflected in our performances on the pitch for the year ahead,” Hopkins added.

David McAllister appointed Buccaneers U20s Head Coach

Buccaneers RFC are delighted to confirm the appointment of David McAllister as their new U-20’s Head Coach for the coming season.

McAllister, a former Leinster senior professional player in the mid-2000s had his playing career cut short by injury. His earlier playing career was on the perfect upward trajectory of a young player with ambitions of being a pro player where McAllister was no doubt earmarked as one for the future, at that time.

With an impressive career resume, McAllister can boast

· contesting 2 Schools Senior Cup Finals, victorious in one

· playing for St. John’s College, Hamilton, and Waikato U-19s in New Zealand

· being a member of the Irish Elite Academy

· representing Leinster at Schools, U-21’s and Leinster A

· representing Ireland at Schools, U-21’s and Ireland A

before embarking on a professional senior career at Leinster and in Italy.

McAllister has also played Senior AIL with Terenure College, Clontarf and was a player/coach with Monkstown. His more recent coaching career has seen him take up roles with Terenure College SCT, Blackrock College SCT, Leinster Youths, Leinster U-19’s and Terenure U-20’s, as well as his current roles as Head Coach with Technological University Dublin and the SCT at the High School, Rathgar.

McAllister brings a wealth of experience to our U-20’s programme and, together with his knowledge of the game and enthusiasm and ambition for this role, we have no doubt that our U-20’s squad and management will reap the benefits over the course of the coming seasons.


Last weekend’s fixtures drew a blank with all three matches not taking place. Ballina and Oughterard were unable to field against our Seniors and Seconds respectively while Buccs Thirds had to withdraw from their game away to Corinthians Seconds.

Buccaneers Seconds are scheduled to host Monivea in the Curley Cup at Dubarry Park on Saturday evening, kick off 7.30pm. Monivea suffered a narrow 7-0 home defeat to Ballyhaunis last weekend which may be of benefit to them so Martin Staunton’s charges will have to, slightly belatedly, hit the ground running.

Buccaneers U-20’s under new coach David McAllister travel to Dublin on Sunday for a friendly against Clontarf with this game commencing at 2pm.


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