Thursday 29 September 2016

Legendary hooker Keith honoured by Haven

Published 13/03/2016 | 02:30

WINNER: Haven ambassador Paul O’Connell with charity founders, Leslie and Carmel Buckley, and Keith Wood, who received the Haven Outstanding Contribution to Irish Rugby Award. Photo: Frank McGrath
WINNER: Haven ambassador Paul O’Connell with charity founders, Leslie and Carmel Buckley, and Keith Wood, who received the Haven Outstanding Contribution to Irish Rugby Award. Photo: Frank McGrath

Haven, the leading Irish charity working on the ground in Haiti, has honoured Irish rugby legend Keith Wood.

  • Go To

He was presented with the Outstanding Contribution to Irish Rugby Award 2016 at a ceremony on Friday.

Former Irish back row Alan Quinlan was master of ceremonies for the event, which took place in Dublin's InterContinental Hotel and was attended by former Irish captain Paul O'Connell and broadcaster George Hook, both of whom are ambassadors for the charity.

During Keith Wood's career, he was a talisman for club, country and the British and Irish Lions. He led the Irish team as captain 36 times and was capped by his country 58 times.

Mr Wood holds the world record for the most tries scored by a hooker and was also the inaugural winner of the IRB World Player of the Year Award in 2001.

Having retired from the sport after the 2003 Rugby World Cup, he was inducted into the World Rugby Hall of Fame in 2014.

Speaking at the event, Haven founder and chairman, Leslie Buckley said: "It is our privilege to celebrate the fantastic achievements of Keith Wood at the Haven Rugby Lunch today.

"Keith was not only a truly dynamic, impassioned player, but a born leader of men, and his influence as captain of the Irish team was immense.

"Haven enjoys a very strong connection to rugby in Ireland and I am delighted to celebrate that connection today, particularly with Haven ambassadors Paul O'Connell and George Hook joining us."

Paul O'Connell said: "As both a Haven ambassador and his former teammate, it is a real honour to be here today to see a genuine rugby hero, Keith Wood, presented with this award.

"Keith was the complete leader, and his unrelenting passion and perseverance made an incredible difference to the game of rugby in Ireland. He truly deserves this award today."

All monies raised during this year's Rugby Lunch will go towards supporting community development programmes on the ground in Haiti.

Since its establishment, Haven has facilitated the training of over 78,000 Haitian people, brought over 1,400 volunteers to the country to work on its projects, and built or upgraded homes for over 19,800 people.

It has also directly employed over 1,200 Haitian people.

Speaking on the importance of supporting ongoing work in the country, Mr Buckley said he will be calling on the incoming government and the new minister for overseas aid to commit more funding to Haiti.

Sunday Independent

Read More

Promoted articles

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport