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Guinness Rugby Club 2015/16 Season Summary

John Madden Cup Final Squad (Photo by Tony Keogh)

We played 2 friendlies, 14 league games and 5 cup games over the course of 27 weekends.

In the league we won 4 games, we lost 4 other games by 1 or 2 points resulting in a positive 6th place finish.

In the Winters Cup we played 1 game which was a lost to Old Wesley. We regrouped following the loss in the Winters Cup and set our sights on the next cup which was to be the John Madden Cup. In the Madden Cup we won game 1, got a walkover for game 2 to enter the semi-final. We went on to beat Coolmine in a very physical game at home to reach the final against Malahide.

The day of the final you could feel the tension, the excitement and the want within the dressing room as the team built themselves up to a level not seen all season. We went out in the first half ready for a tough game and that is what we got. Malahide tried to bash their way over the line many times with little success. They scored 2 tries that materialised from nothing other than luck. We kept them at bay and scored tries of our own. After we put up a solid defence we went on the attack. One of their players received a yellow card for a high tackle and some of their older usually reliable players went off injured or exhausted. This was our opportunity to put the foot down and seal the win. We did just that in the last 20 minutes by scoring another 2 tries to win the game 27-12.

An influx of some new players from last year and this year such as, Bartek, JC, Eoghan, Idriss, Padraig, Declan, Javi Alba and others, they have been a big part of the club this year.

We had a season of injuries, most were minor and the players soldiered on but some were serious. Players such as TJ, Sean Cummins, David Graham, Aaron Coen, Daniel Alison and Eric Hurley received injuries that put them out for a longer period of time, we head a number of players out injured with head injuries which is some cause for concern, all of this put us in a difficult position in terms of numbers for training and for games but other players stepped in to help the club when it was needed, the likes of Peter Carr, Jonathan Rooney, Robert Sweeney, Luke O'Hara, Sean Naughton and many others kept the club above the water line.

We now know the preparation and work that is required. We must train better than last year and maintain higher standards that we know we are capable of, to not only retain the John Madden but to have a better presence in the league and the Winters Cup.

Thanks to Eddie Tyrell and Tony Keogh for the behind the scenes work. Thanks to Thomas Walsh (Team Manager) and Jonathan O'Byrne (Coach) for giving us their unpaid time to achieve what we achieved this season.

Everyone in Guinness Rugby Club would like to thank those who stepped in as captain throughout the season, it was a personal thing for me to have more than one leader this season and I think we have achieved that. I would especially like to thank Sean Cummins who took up the role as club captain. Sean has not had the easiest of seasons nor made it easy for the rest of us but it will serve as valuable experience for him in the future as he showed passion and commitment throughout the season to lead the club to win the John Madden Cup.

Jonathan Myers

Head Coach