Highfield s JTR Murphy Elected President
What a season for Munster Rugby! With an impressive array of Cups and trophies on display as well as plans for the redevelopment of Thomond Park in full view at the Munster Branch IRFU AGM at Highfield RFC on Thursday night, it s certainly an exciting time for rugby in the province.
Pride of place at the AGM was the Heineken Cup, along with Cork Constitution s AIB All Ireland Senior Cup, Shannon s All Ireland Division One League Cup and All Ireland U20 s Cup, Garryowen s trophy for winning AIL Division One sectional honours, and the AIL Division Three trophy won by Clonakilty.
New President JTR Murphy was suitably proud to assume the role after Munster enjoyed such a successful season on and off the field. Involved in rugby since 1950, the Highfield man has had an illustrious career in rugby administration and is relishing the challenge of his new role. Bob McConkey of Shannon was elected Vice President, with Nick Comyn of Sunday s Well elected Junior Vice President. Old Crescent s Jim Riordan was re-elected Treasurer, with Sunday s Well s Frank Byford re-elected Honorary Secretary.
Relishing the challenge of what lies ahead, the new President paid tribute to the Immediate Past President Ken Lyons as someone who had breathed new life into the position. In his 56 years involved with Munster, Ralph referred to how the sport of rugby has evolved during that period. He admitted he was relishing the challenge of the year ahead, and commented that the Heineken Cup has become a beacon to help promote and develop the sport in the province. He also paid tribute to the world renowned Munster supporters who have supported the team throughout the season and over the last number of years and the huge contribution they make to the sport.
The plans to redevelop Thomond Park to a 26,000 capacity grounds has made great progress during the season, particularly with the release of the Ten Year tickets to clubs, supporters and members of the public. Chairman of the Redevelopment Committee Niall O Driscoll has been hugely involved in driving this project and the results of the Committee s hard work are becoming evident as the project gathers pace.
Added to the on the field successes were the establishment of two new rugby clubs in the province during the past year- Ballyhoura and Estuary, both in Limerick.
Another new initiative undertaken is the National Player Registration Programme, which has come on stream in the last month, providing all clubs, provincial branches and IRFU staff with a modern, open, secure and user friendly information system. This new system allows clubs to register players directly online using the latest internet technology and therefore helping to compile a central database of information. The values and benefits of the registration programme come from the data and statistical information available from a live census of the playing population.
The draw for the 2006/7 ODM Munster Senior Challenge Cup draw also took place with the first round draws taking place the weekend of September 23rd.
Garryowen v Youghal
Dolphin v Highfield
Thomond v Sunday s Well
Old Crescent v U.C.C.
U.L. Bohemian v Cork Constitution
Waterpark v Shannon
Midleton v Clonakilty
Byes - Nenagh Ormond, Young Munster, Bruff.
The second round games take place the weekend of 30th September.
Waterpark/Shannon v Young Munster
UL Bohemian/Cork Constitution v Dolphin/Highfield
Midleton/Clonakilty v Old Crescent/UCC
Bruff v Nenagh Ormond
Thomond/Sunday s Well v Garryowen/Youghal.
2006/7 Munster Branch Officers:
President: JTR Murphy, Highfield RFC
Vice President: Bob McConkey, Shannon RFC
Hon. Treasurer: Jim Riordan, Old Crescent RFC
Hon. Secretary: Frank Byford, Sunday s Well RFC
Junior Vice President: Nick Comyn, Sunday s Well RFC
Immediate Past President: Ken Lyons, Old Crescent RFC
Club & Sub Committee Representatives:
G. Malone, S. Clancy (Deputy), Bruff RFC;
J. Downey, P. Mullen (Deputy), Clonakilty RFC;
W. Morrissey, G. Barrett (Deputy), Cork Constitution FC;
C. Fitzgerald, JV O Callaghan (Deputy), Dolphin RFC;
J. Gibson, D. Madden (Deputy), Garryowen FC;
M. Carroll, P. Scott (Deputy), Highfield RFC;
D. Kelleher, Midleton RFC;
B. Nolan, P. Reddan (Deputy), Old Crescent RFC;
G. O Loughlin, P. O Connor (Deputy), Shannon RFC
B. Keating, O. Allen (Deputy), Sunday s Well RFC;
J. Hartery, Thomond RFC;
M. O Sullivan, W. Hurley (Deputy), UL Bohemian RFC;
D. Keohane, L. Martin (Deputy), UCC RFC;
M. Keller, P. Power (Deputy), Waterpark RFC;
G. Quaid, B. Collopy (Deputy), Young Munster RFC;
B. O Brien, P. Griffin (Deputy), J. King, E. O Grady (Deputy), Junior Clubs North;
J. O Brien, J. Barry (Deputy), M. Walsh, M. Keane (Deputy), Junior Clubs South;
E. Tobin, E. Ryan (Deputy), Munster Association of Referees;
D. Kelly, N. O Keeffe (Deputy), Youth Committee;
G. Slattery, D. Philpott (Deputy), Schools Committee