Located at Towns Park, Midleton Rugby Football Club has been an integral part of the east Cork community since 1967 with over 400 players across 16 teams aged from 6 to over 45 proud to wear the jersey every week-end.
This year the senior team are competing in division 2B of the All Ireland League following relegation from 2A in a
disappointing end to last season. Leading their coaching staff is new head coach Fergus Burke
, who along with his assistant coach David Lee
and Director of Rugby David Ryan
is looking to renew and rebuild his side while setting his sights on success for the coming year. “I am delighted to be at Midleton this year and am honoured to be leading a great squad, said Burke. “This is going to be a challenging year for the club and indeed our senior side due to emigration and retirements however the team, coaches and I feel we are more than up to the task and with a new view and energy we are confident we will yield positive results”.
“We have a good intake of new players this season and things are starting to come together. We have a dedicated squad and our players are motivated and eager to perform. Commitment at training is vital, and I am happy with our progress both in training and on match days. There is also a brilliant youth setup at Midleton and it is great to see the potential that is being demonstrated by the talent coming through”.
Club president Andrew McCarthy has welcomed Fergus to the fold and looks forward to a positive season “we are delighted to have a Head Coach of Fergus’ calibre at the club. He brings a fresh view and energy, something that is well timed for Midleton as we look forward to the challenges ahead.” McCarthy went on to say “Midleton is in a transition period at the moment with more and more emphasis being put on our underage. We have some good talent coming through the ranks and it is through the efforts of the setup under the director of youth rugby Dr Paul Simpson, former senior players and all the other coaches that we should see a lot of players that are going to come through to be senior players for Midleton.”
Supporting Burke in the forward Coach role is Dave Lee who has been involved with Midleton RFC for the last 11 years in both a playing and coaching capacity. Dave has also lined out for the likes of Senior Clubs Cork Con, Bective and Galwegians and has also had the honour of captaining Midleton for two seasons. A keen tactician and well focused on set play, Dave is relishing the challenge ahead. “We have been working hard at training over the past couple of months and I have been very happy with our on pitch performance to-date”, he said. “We are continuing to improve on the set pieces at every session and plan a few surprises for the opposition this season!”
This season also sees some major development work at Midleton RFC. Through the generous support of a Sports Capital Grant, a project for grounds development and floodlights is being undertaken and it is envisaged this initiative will revolutionise how Midleton manage their facilities and training programmes.
Commenting on the future club development President, McCarthy said “At Midleton RFC we are focused on renewing and developing our squads at all levels as well as linking in with the community”.
“Player retention and building our squads are at the heart of what we do as an amateur rugby club. This promotes the sport of rugby union football through the development of youth and senior teams while growing our membership, volunteers and supporters numbers”.
“The Community also plays a big part in supporting these goals and it is important that as a club we support and develop strong ties and partnerships within the wider community by actively supporting community activities wherever possible. With these sentiments in mind I want to wish every success to all our teams at all levels for the coming season and look forward to the changes the season promises to bring.”
To bridge the gap between the grant and total cost Midleton RFC are holding a major fundraiser – “Who wants to be a Thousandaire?” on the 19th of October. This is an 8 round quiz night facilitated by an expert marketing company with up to €8,000 in prize money up for grabs in a purpose built Marquee. So far over 80 local businesses have shown their support (to whom the club are extremely grateful) by agreeing to advertise at the event in what promises to be a night not to miss. For details please visit www.midletonrugby.com
President: Andrew McCarthy
Senior Vice President: George Jeffery
Secretary: Chris Lordan
Treasurers: Eamon O’Shaughnessy/John Levis
Director of Rugby: David Ryan
PRO: Jason Boyle
Fixtures Secretary: Charles King