Grand Slam heroes celebrate in style at formal RDS dinner

Ireland celebrates Six Nations win

Eoghan Moloney

Ireland’s rugby heroes celebrated their historic Grand Slam win on Saturday at a formal dinner event in the RDS with their opponents England.

After landing Ireland’s fourth-ever Grand Slam in Dublin last weekend following triumphs in Belfast (1948), Cardiff (2009) and Twickenham (2018), the squad hosted England at a formal dinner at the RDS on Saturday night as is traditional after Six Nations games.

The squad then went back to the Shelbourne Hotel where they were booked in for an after-hours celebration. The group partied well into the morning after solidifying their world number one ranking with a 29-16 win over rivals England.

A low-key celebration continued on through Sunday with family and friends as the squad gathered to watch Ireland’s U-20s put the finishing touches to a perfect sporting weekend by landing their own Grand Slam with a 36-24 victory over England.

Despite the historic achievement of two Grand Slams in two days, it’s anticipated there will be no formal civic reception this week for the squads for both logistical and timing reasons.

Given the Six Nations title and Grand Slam were clinched at home at a packed Aviva on Saturday in front of home fans, it’s believed no civic reception will be held. If the title had been won on foreign soil, a celebration was more likely.

A camp insider said the squad will be taking a well-earned short break for a few days after an intense eight-week spell but will be re-joining their provinces soon with big games coming up in the URC and Champions Cup.

No team holiday will take place until after the finish of the club competitions and then all attention will turn to the preparations for the Rugby World Cup, which will begin on September 8 in France.

There was no update on the fitness of Johnny Sexton who limped off towards the end of Saturday’s clash but it’s anticipated he will be assessed this week.