Skerries on to a winner as scores run out for kids' blitz
Skerries RFC came alive recently for their first tag blitz of 2018, when more than 250 pupils from Scoil Réalt na Mara and Lusk National School came along for a fun-filled morning of tag rugby.
Superb skills were on display - from spectacular tries to neat interplay and fantastic tags - it was the culmination of all the work put in by everyone over the course of the Leinster Rugby Primary School Play Rugby programme.
Leinster and Skerries Club Community Rugby Officer (CCRO) Andy Carabini explained: "We cover a lot of blitzes across the Metro and Fingal areas each season and this has to be one of the most enjoyable I have been involved in.
"Maybe I am biased but today shows how successful our games-based approach to teaching rugby is. Kids playing tag rugby with a smile on their faces gives everyone a lift. Some of the guys here today are not involved in any regular sport so it's great to see them running around and laughing."
Skerries RFC chairman Nick Heeney agreed and said: "The club is heavily involved in the local schools and that work was on display here today.
"Along with Andy and his Leinster colleagues we want to put a rugby ball into the hands of kids who would not otherwise give rugby a go."
Andy thanked the club for the use of facilities, as well as his fellow Leinster CCROs for their help on the day.
He had a special word of thanks also for the pupils and teachers from both schools for their enthusiasm and support over the course of the programme and, of course, on the day itself.
Girls shine in school blitz
Portarlington RFC recently held its largest ever blitz for 5th and 6th class girls' primary schools in the area.
Under the stewardship of Portarlington Club Community Rugby Officer Paidi Mahon, more than 200 girls from local primary schools (Presentation Primary Portarlington, St Evin's NS Monasterevin and Portlaoise Educate Together NS) fielded 18 teams across 45 games.
Leinster Rugby women's development officer Jennie Bagnall described the event as the "biggest ever" run by the Leinster Branch exclusively for primary school girls.
Thanks to all the teachers and to Paul Brady and JohnJoe McIlwrath, the CCROs from Portlaoise RFC and Cill Dara RFC, for their help.
For more details on training and getting rugby into your school, contact Paidi Mahon at PortarlingtonCCRO@leinsterrugby.ie.
Coming Soon: Independent.ie's new GAA newsletter. Sign up here