Tag Archives: Connacht


Connacht U17s Eddie Coyle, Micheal Broaders and Daire Cregg, with Assistant Coach Gavin Foley

The Connacht Rugby U-17 squad recently returned from a two-match tour of North Wales as part of their development ahead of the summer programme.  Based out of Colwyn Bay, the 30-man squad completed a five-day, multi-faceted trip which incorporated strength & conditioning, on-pitch training, video analysis, goal and values setting, pool and sea recovery sessions and challenge matches against Sale Sharks U-17s and Cheshire County U-17s.  Sligo were well-represented with Micheal Broaders, Eddie Coyle and Daire Cregg, along with Connacht U17s Assistant Coach Gavin Foley.

Connacht Rugby Nominations

Two Sligo players are in the running for Connacht Rugby Awards on April 13th

AIL- Sligo’s Ryan Feehily, nominated for Connacht Senior Club Player of the Year

Scrum half Ryan Feehily has been nominated for the Connacht Senior Club Player of the Year.  Ryan is an integral part of the All-Ireland League Division 2B team.  He is joint captain, along with Shane O’Hehir and is the current top scorer for the season, with a total of 9 tries.

U18.5 – Donnacha Byrne, nominated for Connacht U18 Player of the Year

Donnacha Byrne has been nominated for the Connacht U18 Player of the Year.  Captain of the U18.5 Club team and the Summerhill College senior team, Donnacha has also played for Connacht U18s and U19s and is currently training with the Ireland U18 Clubs & Schools, having earned his first Irish Cap against Italy in November.


Connacht Rugby will be running a rugby camp in Ballymote Community Park on Thursday 21st February for all players aged 6 – 14 years. This rugby camp is open to all, no previous rugby experience necessary. The camp will run from 9.15a.m. to 1p.m. and costs €25 p.p. This will include coaching from qualified IRFU coaches, as well as a Connacht Rugby Total Health long sleeve top.

Book online using the link https://www.connachtrugby.ie/community/skillzone-camp/

Congratulations Hannah!

Sligo RFC’S own Hannah Johnston was part of history in Leixlip on Saturday when she and her Connacht team-mates won the U18 Girls Inter-Pro Series for the first time ever.

Coach Fraser Gow pictured with Hannah Johnston (Sligo R.f.C.) and Finola Collins (Ballina R.F.C.)

After successive wins over Ulster and Munster, the girls in green headed to Leixlip to take on Leinster in a winner-takes-all crunch game. History is always hard to create and the western warriors had to work very hard to get the better of the home side.

Hannah Johnston (Sligo R.f.C.) and Finola Collins (Ballina R.F.C.) celebrate their historic win with Connacht U18 girls

There were scenes of pure joy at the end when the final whistle signalled the title was headed for the West. Hannah made the starting XV for the decisive game and played at flanker. Having only taken up rugby with the club last year, aged 15, Hannah is now playing U18 rugby with the province, an incredible achievement for someone so young. Everyone in Sligo R.F.C. would like to congratulate Hannah on this historic achievement.

This is another huge boost for girls rugby in Sligo and an inspiration to all the young girls wishing to play the wonderful game.
Training for U14, U16 & U18 girls continues every Monday & Thursday at 7. All welcome, no previous experience necessary.

Sligo R.F.C. Players all play their role in Connacht

Sligo R.F.C. was well-represented last weekend as Connacht Eagles had a comprehensive 36 – 16 win against Leinster Development.

Connacht Eagles – Kuba Wojtkowicz, Stephen Kerins, Conan O’Donnell and Kuba’s little brother Max

Kuba Wojtkowicz, Stephen Kerins and Conan O’Donnell all featured for Connacht Eagles, while Cillian Gallagher got the call up for the senior Connacht V Bristol match, winning 12-14.

Connacht U18s
Congratulations to Sligo R.F.C.’s Donnacha Byrne (Back Row), Luke Hogge (Centre) and Hubert Gilvarry (Full Back) who were on the Connacht U18s team who became inter-provincial champions for the first time in 40 years.

Connacht U18 Interprovincial Champions Donnacha Byrne, Luke Hogge & Hubert Gilvarry

Connacht U18s opened their campaign with a stunning, late comeback against a shocked Leinster, as a last-minute try secured a brilliant 33-29 victory for the boys in green. They took control of the inter-provincial championship with their second win in five days, when they produced a superb seven-try performance against hosts Munster, recording an impressive 47-17 score line, as Connacht Head Coach Andy Friend looked on. They then went on to defeat Ulster 41-15 last Sunday to make it three wins from three in the U18 inter-provincial competition at the U18s Festival in the University of Limerick.

Connacht U17s
Congrats to the three Sligo players who made the Connacht U17 squad and played 
Munster in a challenge match last Wednesday. Eddie Coyle (Sligo Grammar School), 
Micheal Broaders (Summerhill College) and Daire Cregg (Abbey Community College Boyle)

Connacht U16s
Well done to Liam Candon (Coola Post Primary), Ewan Ripon (Summerhill College), Oisin Cregg (Abbey Community College, Boyle) and Niall O’Connor (Summerhill College) who were all in the Connacht U16 squad who played Munster in a challenge match in Tuam R.F.C. last week. 

Connacht Youth News

Congratulations to the 10 Sligo RFC members on the Connacht U16, U17 and U18 squads. This is a testament to their hard work and dedication to rugby over the years.

3 Sligo RFC members are on the Connacht U18 squad that played in the Inter-Pro series last weekend.

  • Donnacha Byrne, Back row, Summerhill College

  • Hubert Gilvarry , Full back, Sligo Grammar School
Luke Hogge, Centre, Summerhill College

Check out the full squad here

3 Sligo RFC players in the Connacht U17 squad to play Munster in a challenge game next Wednesday 22nd August in UL.

  • Eddie Coyle – Prop – Sligo Grammar
Michael Borders – Secondrow -Summerhill 

  • Daire Cregg – Outhalf – Abbey Community College Boyle

4 Sligo RFC players in the Connacht U16 squad to play Munster in a challenge match next Tuesday 21st August in Tuam RFC.

    Liam Candon – Coola

    Ewan Rippon – Summerhill College

Oisin Cregg – Abbey Community College Boyle

Niall O’Connor – Summerhill College

Connacht Women V Ulster Women

Connacht 24 – Ulster 17

Hamilton Park played host to a senior women’s inter-provincial game last Saturday, when Connacht took on Ulster in a challenge game in advance of the Inter-Provincial series next month. This was an opportunity for Head Coach Jarleth Naughton and Assistant Coach Sligo RFC’s Jason East to see the whole squad in action, to determine who will earn the starting places against Munster on September 1st. Ireland international and Sligo RFC member Nicole Fowley played at out-half, returning to rugby after a prolonged absence due to injury.

Tara Buggie drives for the try line

The match kicked off in near perfect conditions for rugby, with the pitch in Hamilton Park a credit to the hard-working grounds crew, worthy of any inter-provincial fixture. Ulster started out the stronger, with the lion’s share of possession, dominating at the breakdown and putting in some bone-crunching tackles. They were rewarded for their efforts and put 10points on the board with no reply from the home side. It took over 20minutes for Connacht to settle into the game, which was being marred by a litany of handling errors and disarray in the line-outs. The nerves were settled when an intercept try by Shannon Tuohy was converted and Connacht began to make more of their possession. Working their way into the Ulster half again, the Connacht pack showed their dominance in the scrum and drove over the line to put Connacht ahead by two points at half-time.

Shannon Tuohy with a breakaway try for Connacht

The second-half was dominated in all areas by Connacht, with Ulster failing to clear their lines or get out of their own half until the 57th minute. By then, the home side had scored another two tries. The girls in green showed great patience in scoring their 4th try, going through the phases with the pack and eventually spinning it out wide for Sligo RFC’s own Nicole Fowley to touch down for Connacht’s final try of the game.

Ulster enjoyed a short period of dominance towards the end of the game and their perseverance paid off, as they were rewarded with a well-worked try of their own, bringing them within 7points of Connacht. However, it was a case of too little, too late for the visitors, as the final whistle blew, and Connacht had the win in the bag, much to the delight of the large home crowd.

Connacht U18 Girls

The senior team were eagerly watched by their U18 counterparts, who had a training session in the Club that morning. Sligo’s sole representative on the U18 team is 15year old Hannah Johnston from Manorhamilton.

Hannah Johnston & Nicole Fowley

Hannah only took up rugby last year when she joined Sligo RFC and has proven herself as a natural, showing great maturity as a player. Sligo RFC would like to wish both Nicole and Hannah the very best of luck in the Inter-Provincial series this year. Training for girls rugby starts back in September, any girls wishing to join the club this year should contact Gabriel 087 7636168 or email prosligorfc@gmail.com

Connacht U18 have last gasp win against Leinster

Connacht U18 33 – Leinster U18 29

The boys in green pulled off a stunning victory with a last-minute comeback win against Leinster in the U18s Inter-Pro series in the University of Limerick last Saturday. Connacht were trailing 22-12 at half-time but stunned their opposition in the second half with their never-say-die attitude and touched down with the last play of the game to beat the much-favoured Leinster.

Sligo RFC’s Hubert Gilvarry, Donnacha Byrne and Luke Hogge after playing for Connacht U18s

Sligo’s Donnacha Byrne was singled out for having an outstanding game at number eight, making a big impact throughout the game, especially at close quarters. Connacht will continue their campaign on Wednesday 22nd, when they take on Munster U18s, who also have a win under their belts after defeating Ulster 32-10. 

Connacht v Ulster

Hamilton Park will play host to two inter-provincial challenge games this Sunday, when Connacht host Ulster at U18 girls and Senior Women levels. The action kicks off at 1p.m. with the U18 game and Sligo’s own Hannah Johnson is on the team. The senior game follows at 2.30p.m. with Irish International Nicole Fowley representing Sligo R.F.C. We would hope for a large crowd to cheer on Hannah, Nicole and Connacht.