It is a great honour for me to be elected as President of Greystones RFC for 22/23 season and step into Barry O’Beirne’s shoes and the much-coveted Presidential car park space. Like Barry, I have had a long involvement with the club starting with the U/19s back in 1985 as a player, and from 1995 as a coach, manager, and general shaker and mover.
Last season our 1st team fell at the final hurdle on the final day under the new Covid play-off rules. A difficult time for all those involved who put so much effort in, but a strong foundation was built for this coming season and hopefully Danny Kenny and his coaching staff can get us over the line.
However, this is not an easy task and while we have ambitions for promotion, so does every other club. ..... but that’s the beauty of sport. On that note I would like to welcome all visiting teams, supporters and officials to Greystones and hope
have a memorable and pleasant visit to our club.
I would like to specifically thank retiring coaches Kevin Lewis and Warren O’Kelly for their incredible service to the club over the last eight seasons and for the fantastic brand of rugby they encouraged on a shoestring budget. There will always be a drink for them in the club house and I hope they will continue to contribute to the club in other capacities.
The club provides so many people with great enjoyment through the dedication of the players, the coaches and supporting team. I would also like to highlight, having witnessed it over the last year, the outstanding efforts of our executive Committee who bring all of this together under the guidance of our chairman Donall Gannon and Hon Secretary Anne Bowes. I should also congratulate Anne on her election as President in waiting to follow Michael McNaughton after yours truly.
We are blessed to have wonderful sponsorship partnerships drawn from the ranks of local residents, members and former players. In particular I would like to thank again this year’s main sponsors Peter and Ross Doyle, supported by Paul Dunne’s advocacy with Bisley (whose name you will now see adorning the player’s shorts), and for the first year thanks must go to Colm Power for supporting our partnership with NFP as decorated on our new goal post coverings. Our critically important under 20’s continue to be supported by Eddie O’Dwyer and our underage and minis rugby by its longstanding support through O’Gorman Properties. There are many others including Northern Trust, the Keyes Family and Glen Fuel Services Ltd and of course Paul Mahon and Deanta Consulting, sponsors of women’s rugby.
Greystones has rugby club facilities that are the envy of most clubs in the country, the pitches continually draw high praise from our guests including recent internationals who have trained on the pitch – they are always in superb condition, and this is thanks to the hard work of Willie and Sam Byrne. Justin O’Reilly continues to be the friendly front of house of the Club’s bar and food facilities - top class in both service and quality.
I would like to thank our outgoing President Barry O’Beirne who stood at the helm for 2 years because of covid and didn’t miss a match or club dinner in that time. He had a refreshing and unique style which we all enjoyed. He was very aware that our 1st team squad is the flag ship of the club but he understood the importance of Women’s and Junior Rugby and it was not by accident they found a new lease of life during his time.
I wish our new captain Eoin Marmion the very best, succeeding his mercurial older brother and hope he enjoys playing as well as leading. He was the natural selection and was our ‘flag bearer’ for all of last season. I would also like to wish an enjoyable and successful season to Ana Iraizoz who has been appointed Women’s Captain, a fantastic appointment and an acknowledgement of the contribution she has made to our Club.
Close to my own heart, Billy Ngwini and his team has moved heaven and earth to develop our under twenties academy side, show them your support as we look to develop the next generation of Marmos, Kealys and Pearses. I would also like to wish an enjoyable and successful season to the following - Director of Rugby Barry Kealy and his Junior Director David Coleman, newly appointed director of underage and youths rugby Tony McGuinness, Seconds head coach Liam Murphy,
J3’s head coach Ian Roche, Under 20’s head coaches Billy Ngwini (and yours truly), Head coach of our ladies team Paul Mahon, Coach of the seagulls Keith O’Brien. My wishes also extend to all the assistant coaches, managers, backup staff, fitness, medical, physics and indeed to all teams who represent Greystones RFC.
Lastly, I would to wish Temple Carraig, St Gerards, St Davids and my own Pres Bray all the best for their upcoming leagues and we will continue to make the club facilities available to them.
President Greystones RFC 2022/23 Season