Ireland Rugby Legends

Shane Byrne (Captain)

Leinster, Ireland, British and Irish Lions

Previously Leinster’s most capped player, Shane Byrne won his first cap for Ireland against Romania in 2001. He earned a reputation as one of the world’s most accurate line out throwers. Shane has won 41 caps for his country, helping Ireland win the Triple Crown in 2004. In 2005 he was selected for the Lions tour to New Zealand and played in all three tests. Byrne has a total of three tries for Ireland, scoring twice in one match against Wales in the 2004 Six Nations.

In 2005 he joined with Saracens for two years before returning to Ireland and hanging up his boots.

Shane, who is nicknamed Mullet after his distinctive gruaig, is now a director with Arklow Waste Disposal, his family business and also head of operations for Focus International Property.

David Wallace

Munster, Ireland, Irish Lions

David Wallace Brother of internationals Richard & Paul, David with 71 senior international caps to his credit was also capped at Ireland U21 & Sevens level and joined the 2001 Lions tour where he played against NSW Country and ACT Brumbies.

He was also on the Lions trip to New Zealand and became a Lion for the third time playing in the two opening Tests in South Africa in summer 2009.He is just one of three Munster players in the current squad to have won over 200 caps (200th in the Magners League Grand Final).

The explosive flanker kept up his impressive scoring record for Ireland when touching down against Italy in Rome during the 2009 RBS Six Nations campaign. Wallace now has two Heineken Cup medals and a Magners League in the pocket but the highlight has been his contribution to Ireland’s historic Grand Slam run in 2009 with fans and commentators alike heralding his performances.

Malcolm O’Kelly

Leinster, Ireland, British & Irish Lions

O'Kelly has since been suprassed by Brian O'Driscoll, but has earned 92 test caps as of May 2010. O'Kelly also played with the Lions on their tour to Australia, and had been named in the Lions squad for their 2005 tour of New Zealand, but aggravated a groin injury in training and was replaced by Simon Shaw. He is the senior player for Leinster, having earned 181 caps for the province.

At the end of the 09/10 season, O'Kelly announced his retirement from professional rugby. He is the only player in the Heineken cup to have played since the start of the competition – 15 years. He has won a grand slam, the Heineken cup, the Magners League(3) and 5 Triple Crowns: he is also Ireland's most capped second row. As well as that, he is a two time British and Irish Lion.

Girvan Dempsey

Leinster, Ireland

Dempsey won his first full cap as a replacement against Georgia in November 1998 and scored two tries. He became a first choice player in 2000 and played in all five of Ireland's matches at the 2003 World Cup.

He reached a milestone when winning his 50th cap in the 2004 summer tour's second Test against South Africa, and is currently the joint-fourth most-capped Irish player in history, with nine of his appearances as a winger between 1998 and 2005.

Most recently he helped Ireland to a 2006 Triple Crown victory in Ireland's 28–24 victory over England and Leinster to their first ever Heineken Cup win. He also won the Magners League with Leinster.

He has been capped 82 times by Ireland, scoring 95 points(19tries), putting him 4th on the Irish all-time international try scorer list. He has been capped 198 times for leinster scoring 184 points.

Dempsey announced that he would retire from rugby union at the end of the 2009–10 season, a week after Leinster were knocked out of the 2009-10 Heineken Cup.

Trevor Brennan

Toulouse, Ireland

Ireland lock Trevor Brennan won 13 caps for his country before a controversial end to his career in 2007.

Having made his debut against South Africa in 1998, Brennan represented Ireland at the 1999 Rugby World Cup before enjoying a hugely successful stint with French side Toulouse.

Brennan, 38, won two Heineken Cup winner’s medals with Toulouse but has not played since 2007, when he retired from the sport following an altercation with an Ulster fan during a European pool game. His ban ended on June 1st 2012.

Nick Popplewell

Newcastle Falcons, Ireland, British & Irish Lions

Nick won 48 caps for his country between 1989 and 1998. He played club rugby for Greystones RFC and the Newcastle Falcons. He started all 3 tests for the British & Irish Lions on the tour to New Zealand in 1993.

Eric Miller

Leinster, Ireland, British & Irish Lions

Miller first played for Leinster during the 1995-96 season while still attached to Old Wesley.

In 1996 Miller joined Leicester Tigers and went onto make 12 appearances for them in the Heineken Cup. His impressive performances for the Tigers saw him make his debut for Ireland and then represent the British and Irish Lions. While playing for the Tigers, he also attended both Loughborough University, where he studied for a degree in Physical Education, and Sheffield Hallam University.

After his spell with Leicester Tigers he returned to Ireland and initially linked up with Terenure College RFC and Ulster. In 2000 he returned to Leinster and went onto make 148 appearances for the province in the Celtic League and the Heineken Cup. Back at Leinster he helped them win the 2001-02 Celtic League title.

Mick Galwey

Munster, Ireland & British & Irish Lion

The only winner of an All- Ireland in both rugby and football. Galwey was an inspirational leader and lead by example who could inspire and motivate players around him to punch above their collective weights.

Galwey is seen as a legend of the sport in his native Munster. With 130 caps for Munster, 85 as captain and involved in 10 Munster senior cups and 6 All Ireland Leagues with Shannon R.F.C Galway is a star in his own right.

Galwey's involvement in the Irish national squad includes 41 caps, four times as captain and scorer of three tries; he made his debut in 1991 against France. In the 1993 Five Nations Championship match against England, Galwey rounded off a fine display in the 17-3 defeat by scoring the only try of the game. His efforts were rewarded later that year when he was selected for the Lions tour to New Zealand.

England Rugby Legends

Martin Corry (Captain)

Leicester Tigers, England, British and Irish Lion

A former England captain, who retired last year, after a career which brought him 64 caps, and four Lions Tests. He won caps as a lock and back-row forward. Played in three World Cups, was on the bench for the 2003 final, and started in 2007. After spells with Newcastle and Bristol, he joined Leicester Tigers in 1997. In his twelve years there, he won every domestic honour in the game, as well as two Heineken Cup winners’ medals. Took over the captaincy, on Martin Johnson’s retirement.

Now he’s hung up his full-time boots, the cut on his nose has healed.

Jason Leonard

Harlequins, England, British & Irish Lion

A true legend, and England’s most-capped player, with 114 caps, as well as five Lions tests – making him the world’s most-capped forward. Made his international debut at the tender age of 21, on the 1990 tour of Argentina. Amongst the things thrown on to the pitch was a bath tap. By then, he’d moved from Saracens to Harlequins, after beginning his career with his home club of Barking.

His only international try came in his one game as England captain, against Argentina, in 2000.

Universally known as the Fun Bus, and one of the most popular figures in the game. Occasionally visits The Sun, in Richmond.

Laurence Dallaglio


Laurance Dallaglio Lawrence Dallaglio MBE was one of the key players in the World Cup winning 2003 England Rugby Union squad. Lawrence's contribution in the build up and the final helped secure one of the most important victories in English Rugby.

Lawrence has won virtually every position and accolade available in the game, captaining England before handing over to Martin Johnson He retired from international rugby in 2004, then realised his mistake and fought his way back, despite a career-threatening ankle injury, to play another 12 Tests in 2006 and 2007. After the closely fought World Cup final against South Africa, he retired for the last timeafter 85 appearances for his country.

Josh Lewsey

Wasps, England, British & Irish Lions

Retired last year, after winning 55 caps, and representing his country in four positions. A member of the victorious 2003 World Cup team, he played his last international in the 2007 World Cup semi-final in which he scored his 22nd try for his country.

Joined Wasps as a colt, and returned in 1998, after playing for Bristol while at University there. Helped Wasps to three domestic cups, five domestic titles, two Heineken Cup wins and a Challenge Cup triumph.

Has just returned from the Andes, where he’s been preparing for an ascent of Everest, this summer.

Kyran Bracken

Saracens, England

Early in his career Kyran played for Bristol RFC after flirting with the idea of a football career with Liverpool FC and a Rugby League career with St Helens. But Kyran committed himself to Rugby Union when the sport turned professional.

Kyran made his debut for England against the All Blacks in 1993 sustaining a nasty ankle injury following a stamp from Jamie Joseph. The severity of the injury side-lined Kyran for three months. However, he showed his determination and ability to triumph in the face of adversity by fighting his way back to full fitness and back into the England team.

He signed for Saracens in 1996 and was part of the team that won the Tetley's Bitter Cup against Wasps in 1998. He captained the club for two seasons.

He had a very successful international career winning 51 caps and had the privilege of captaining England for three Tests. In 2003 he triumphed in the world cup and along with the rest of the squad, he was honoured by the Queen and is now an MBE.

Austin Healy

Leicester Tigers, England, British & English Lions

Austin Healy He received his full England debut against Ireland in the 1997 Five Nations, and went on to amass 51 England caps. During his career he was a Lions tourist in 1997 on the victorious tour of South Africa and again in 2001 during the series loss to Australia. His only Test caps came as a replacement in the second and third Tests in 1997.

Healey's finest moments on a rugby pitch came in the green and red of Leicester however. In the 2001 an 2002 Heineken Cup finals Healey was instrumental in bringing the silverware to Welford Road. He provided the break that led to the winning score against Stade Francais in 2001, and he scored the decisive try himself against Munster in 2002. His retirement came at the end of the 2005-06 season following several damaging injuries. In 2008 Healey took part in the sixth series of Strictly Come Dancing, following in the footsteps of Matt Dawson and Kenny Logan.

Ben Kay

Leicester Tigers, England, British & Irish Lions

A towering second-row forward, Ben Kay won 62 caps for England between 2001 and 2009 before retiring at the end of the 2009-10 season after 11 years with Leicester Tigers. Kay was a member of Tigers' Heineken Cup winning sides in 2001 and 2002 as his international career blossomed under the guidance of team-mate and captain Martin Johnson.

He made his full England début against Canada on June 2 200, displacing Danny Grewcock from the England side, and was named as the Tigers' Members' Player of the Year 2001-02. Arguably Kay 's stand-out year came in 2003 when he played every minute of every England game, except for the match against Uruguay, as England won world rugby's top prize.

Sir Clive Woodward selected him for the 2005 British and Irish Lions tour to New Zealand and he started the first Test of the series.He was the only player to play every minute of England's 2007 Rugby World Cup campaign, culminating in their narrow loss in the final. In doing so, he became one of only four players to have started both the 2003 and 2007 Rugby World Cup Finals, the other three being Jonny Wilkinson, Jason Robinson and Phil Vickery.


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