Longford RFC Club News 14/12/2020   14/12/2020

By Tommy Butler Longford RFC PRO lrfconnects@gmail.com 

 Senior Rugby Match/Training Update

At the moment the latest indications are that subject to Government guidelines competitive rugby might be back at all levels from the second weekend in January.  However, at the moment there are no details of the competitions confirmed.  Longford Senior players are in favour of a Champions league style cup competition with proper competitive matches as there is little appetite for Leinster League action with no promotion/relegation.  Hopefully, we will know more next week regarding competitions and fixtures as everyone from U8 to Senior is chomping at the bit to play rugby and all our members and friends to watch some competitive rugby too.  Hopefully our new state of the art 3G pitch will be christened with some competitive rugby this season rather than next!  In the meantime, coaches and players at all levels are continuing to work hard on the training pitch to improve their skills and fitness so they can hit the ground running whenever that is.  Senior Rugby training continues with extra restrictions and Covid safety measures.  We look forward to seeing all our Senior players back on the pitch Tuesday/Friday nights at 7.30 (Women) and 7.45pm (Men).  

Great news: Underage rugby continues

One of the few rays of light during the Level 5 restrictions was that training continued for all underage teams.  Thanks to the dedication to all our Officers, Coaches and Parents for keeping the show safely on the road.  Obviously with restrictions starting to relax training can continue.  However, at the moment there is no news on when matches might restart.  For the moment our players will keep working on their skills and fitness and look forward to taking the pitch again soon.   

Minis (Boys/Girls)

U6-U12 Sundays 10.30am-12.00pm.


U13 Wednesday 7.00-8.30pm (born 2008)
U14 Thursday 7.00-8.30pm (born 2007)
U15 Mon 7.00-8.30pm and Thursday 7.00-8.30pm (born 2006)
U16 Tuesday 7.30-9.00pm (born 2005)
U17 Wednesday 7.30-9.00pm (born 2004)
U18 Wednesday 7.30-9.00pm (born 2003 & up to 01/07/2002)

U12&U14 Thursday 7.30-8.30pm
U16&U18 Wednesday 7.30-9.00pm

Contact 0862526741 for more information.
Longford Rugby Club is a 'Minimum20' club. Youth teams up to U15 promote minimum 20 minutes game time for all players on match day squads. Longford Minis rugby promotes equal game time at all times during games or blitz events.

Champions Cup

The first weekend of the Champions Cup very much belonged to the French teams, with France heavily rotating their squad during the Autumn Nations Cup, seemingly leaving the French team’s fresher than the Pro 14 and Premiership teams.  The weekend started off badly from an Irish point of view with Ulster surrendering their long unbeaten home record versus a Toulouse side who are one of the favourites for the competition 22-29.  Next up was Leinster who visited French heavy weights Montpellier.  Leo Cullen took the brave decision to not immediately bring in all his Irish contingent back into the starting 15, where he instead stuck with most of the side that has been lighting up the Pro 14 to date this year.  Leinster battled hard and came away from France with a tremendous 5 try bonus point win with tries from Van der Flier, Frawley, Kearney, Leavy and Jimmy O’Brien 14-35.  It was particularly poignant for Dan Leavy as it was in the Champions Cup that he suffered a career threatening knee injury over 18 months ago.  Leinster boasted probably one of their best ever benches featuring Cian Healy, Andrew Porter, James Ryan and Dan Leavy.  Again, Rhys Ruddock was phenomenal and his performances this year certainly left a lot of Irish supporters scratching their heads regarding his absence from the Ireland squad.  Ross Byrne, after what was not a great period for him with Ireland performed really well toom with his brother Harry coming on to finish the match.  Leinster welcome Northampton to the RDS next Saturday at 1.  Leinster have an excellent recent record against the English side and if rumours are confirmed that they are sending a weakened side to Dublin, Leinster should be well on the way to qualifying for the quarter final after Saturday.  A big shout out to Connacht who showed tremendous commitment and determination in nearly turning over a Racing Metro side that the threatened to run riot in the first 30 minutes.  Connacht scored their third try in the 76th minute to narrow the deficit to four points and then proceeded to camp on the Racing line for the last four minutes but unfortunately could not get the winning score going down 26-22.  However, their losing bonus point could prove crucial to their qualification hopes if they manage to score wins in their last three matches or at worst qualify for the Challenge Cup Quarter Finals.

The format has been changed this year with rather than four team pools with the winners and two runners up making the quarter finals there are two pools of 12 teams.  Each team plays two other teams’ home and away based on pre-competition seedings, with the top four from each pool going through to the quarter finals, which will be played on an aggregate score home and away basis.  So, it looks like that four wins will be required but equally four try and losing bonus points could prove crucial.  Needless to say, the calculators are going to be out before the last weekend trying to work what will be a lot of different connation’s.  Finally, the rugby on show in the Champions Cup was far better fare that was witnessed in the Autumn Nations cup with lots of rugby and far more tries.  It would be great if the Six Nations heralds a return to more attacking orientated rather than defence focused rugby.

Pitch side Signs

As was reported activity has kept going at high levels behind the scenes in Longford Rugby Club throughout these trying Covid times, some highlights being constructions works on our new state of art 3G pitch getting underway and making progress every week and raising nearly €7500 through tremendous support from our members and friends in the IRFU Your Club Your Country Raffle.  If that was not enough, we are happy to report that our new sponsors pitch side signs have been erected in the past week alongside the Longford RFC front pitch.  We thank all the business/persons that have generously sponsored the signs, which look really great.  We ask all members and club supporters to support these tremendous local businesses as it is rarely the large multinationals that sponsor local clubs likes Longford RFC but the hard working local businesses who have a stake in our town, country and region.  Overall, please shop local this Christmas and support the businesses that support our club.  We will be featuring all the pitch sides sponsors on the club Facebook and Twitter pages over the coming weeks.  There is still room for a few more signs with the cost spread over three years, if you are interested in sponsoring a sign, please contact Derick Turner on 0862559624.

The Sin Bin

The Sin Bin Bar & Restaurant at Longford RFC is back open with Covid 19 measures in place.  It offers great social distancing in LRFCs spacious and modern clubhouse. It offers a welcoming atmosphere, great food and drink and is the perfect place for members and friends to hold functions/events with lots of free parking and is just outside Longford Town. As of July 2020, it is now under the management of Andrew Reynolds who is a very experienced operator in the food/beverage area.

There has been very positive feedback on the great food being served all in a Covid 19 compliant setting with lots of social distancing between tables.

For reservations and enquiries about functions/events, please ring Andrew on 087 3464914.
Food is served at lunchtime from 12-4 Wednesday to Sunday and dinner Friday to Sunday from 5 PM. Please like and follow the Sin Bins Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/thesinbinlongford/ for updates and specials.

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