IRISH SQUAD CHOSEN

Discussion in 'International' started by dimitri, Oct 12, 2003.

  1. dimitri

    dimitri First Grade

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    Ireland Squad and Profiles for European Nations Cup
    Sun Oct 12, 8:47am (UK)
    Written by: Press Release
    Source: Leeds Rhinos
    Ireland Rugby League have confirmed their squad for the inaugural European Nations Cup this Autumn with ten players set to make their international debut for Daryl Powell’s side.

    There are three players who have survived since the World Cup in 2000 and a further seven players who took on France in Albi in 2001.

    The Irish open their campaign against Scotland in Glasgow on Sunday 26th October before entertaining the French in Dublin on Saturday 1st November at Dalymount Park, kick off 5pm.

    For the first time ever, the governing body of the game in Ireland, Rugby League Ireland, are controlling the game and a great deal of work has gone in already to promote the game and secure a top quality venue in Dalymount Park for the fixture.

    Commenting on the squad, Manager Phil Daly said, “This is an exciting group of players who will be the backbone of the Irish side for many years to come. The majority of the side are young players who are keen to take their chance on the international stage and do their country proud. As well as that we have a great deal of experience from the likes of Chris Joynt, Francis Cummins, Dave Bradbury and Shayne McMenemy that will help galvanise our team.”

    The squad includes brothers John and Tommy Gallagher from Leeds. Tommy made his Super League debut this season with London Broncos during a loan spell and John was named the Rhinos Academy Player of the Year recently.

    Also included is Carl De Chenu who played for the East Coast Eagles in the domestic competition in Ireland before joining Sheffield Eagles this summer.

    Fourteen of the squad are with Super League clubs with Gavin Clinch and Karl Fitzpatrick having been part of the successful Salford squad which has regained promotion into the elite division this season.

    Daly added, “The vision for this competition is that it is going to become an annual part of the international calendar and I am certain that this squad can not only form a successful team this season but also in the years to come.

    The squad is without Chris Bridge, Mick Cassidy, Terry O’Connor and Steve Prescott who were ruled out through injury plus Gary Connolly, Barrie McDermott and Brian Carney, who will be on duty for the Great Britain and Irish Lions against Australia.

    “We were extremely disappointed for all the players who have missed out through. It has been a long season and unfortunately that will take it’s toll. All of the players remain in our plans for the future. We are particularly proud of Brian Carney and his elevation into the squad to face Australia.

    "It is a massive boost to the game in Ireland and gives all the players an insight into what is possible. Brian has always been a tremendous servant to Irish Rugby League going right back to his days with the Irish Students team and I am sure he will be keeping an eye out for our results this Autumn.”

    The squad in full is:
    Dave Bradbury - Leigh
    Phil Cantillon - Widnes
    Gavin Clinch - Salford
    Francis Cummins - Leeds
    Carl De Chenu - Sheffield
    Karl Fitzpatrick - Salford
    John Gallagher - Leeds
    Tommy Gallagher - Leeds
    Dean Gaskell - Warrington
    Danny Halliwell - Leigh
    Paul Handforth - Wakefield
    Tim Jonkers – St Helens
    Chris Joynt – St Helens
    James King - Barrow
    Richard Marshall – London
    Chris Maye – St Helens
    Shane McMenemy - Hull
    Mick Slicker - Huddersfield
    Rob Smyth - Warrington
    Tony Stewart – St Helens


    SQUAD PROFILES:

    Dave Bradbury – Leigh
    Dave made his debut in 1999 for Ireland and has previously played with his home town club, Oldham, Salford, Huddersfield and was an integral part of the Leigh side which reached the National League One Grand Final this season. He toured with Great Britain in 1996 to Fiji, Papua New Guinea and New Zealand making four uncapped appearances.

    Phil Cantillon – Widnes
    Formerly with Wigan, Keighley and Leeds, Phil enjoyed his best spell at Widnes where he spent five seasons. In his second season at the club in 2000 he set a new record for most tries in a season by a hooker with 30 only to surpass Ellery Hanley's record for most tries in a season by a forward with 42 tries in the Vikings' NFP Grand Final winning campaign of 2001. He will be making his debut for Ireland in this tournament and qualifies through his grandfather who was born in Tipperary.

    Gavin Clinch - Salford
    Played for Ireland in the World Cup in 2000 and was the starting scrum half against France in 2001. Gavin played for Cronulla, Penrith and St George in Australia before coming to Super League. He enjoyed to successful spells at Halifax plus a season at Wigan and Huddersfield before joining Salford. He was named man of the match in the National League One Grand Final with a fine display that secured Salford’s return to the top flight.

    Francis Cummins – Leeds
    Francis made his debut for Ireland in 2001 after injury ruled him out of the World Cup the previous year. The most prolific try scorer of the summer era of Super League having scored more tries than any other player since 1996. Has just completed his fifth straight season without missing a game for Leeds and has enjoyed a successful Testimonial year in 2003. His grandfather hails from Edenderry, County Offaly.

    Carl De Chenu – Sheffield
    Dublin-born Carl made a try scoring debut for Sheffield Eagles this season in National League Two that saw the former East Coast Eagle, the club centred around Bray, achieve his ambition of playing professionally, after trials with Widnes Vikings and Wigan. A regular for Ireland Students, Carl is keen to follow in the footsteps of Brian Carney in the full side.

    Karl Fitzpatrick – Salford
    Karl will be making his debut for Ireland after a successful season with Salford this year as understudy to club and international team mate Gavin Clinch. Scrum half Fitzpatrick qualifies through a grandmother from County Mayo. Originally played for Wigan St. Pats ARLFC before turning professional with Widnes. He has also played with Tonneins in France and Swinton.

    John Gallagher – Leeds
    The youngest member of the squad and an extremely versatile player. Can play at hooker, loose forward or in the half back line and will relish the opportunity of playing alongside older brother Tommy. Hails from Dewsbury and comes from the same club, St John Fisher, as Tommy and Francis Cummins. He was named Leeds Rhinos Junior Academy Player of the Year this season.

    Tommy Gallagher - Leeds
    Tommy made his Super League debut in 2003 after spending a month on loan from the Rhinos at London Broncos. Tommy was part of the England Academy side that defeated Australia for the first time last season and his graduation to the full international level will see him thrive on the opportunity.

    Dean Gaskell – Warrington
    Dean made his debut for Warrington against St. Helens in August 2002; unfortunately, he injured his Achilles in that game and was sidelined for the rest of the season. Gaskell is a former Wigan St. Patrick's amateur who spent three years with the Wigan Warriors Junior Academy. His grandfather, William Cassidy is from Innisfree and Dean is the cousin of Irish international Mick Cassidy.

    Danny Halliwell - Leigh
    Wigan born Halliwell joined Leigh this season after spending four seasons at Halifax Blue Sox. During his time at Halifax centre Halliwell spent time at Warrington Wolves, Keighley and Wakefield on loan. He has benefited from an extended run in the Leigh side this season and was named in the National League One team of the year.

    Paul Handforth – Wakefield
    Paul has become an established part of the Wakefield squad this season having made 18 appearances. Originally from Oulton Raiders ARLFC, Paul can either play at half back or hooker and will be a valuable addition to the Irish squad.

    Tim Jonkers – St Helens
    Amsterdam-born, Tim qualifies for Ireland because his grandmother was born in Ballinrobe, County Mayo. Tim's season was hit by injury in 2002 when he broke his ankle but returned towards the end of the season to play a full part in Saints Grand Final victory. This season he has been a regular in Ian Millward’s side. He represented Ireland in the 1999 European Championship and played in the last test against France in 2001, injury prevented him from playing in the World Cup.

    Chris Joynt – St Helens
    The most experienced player in the Irish squad having played over 300 games for St Helens since signing for them from Oldham. Chris represented Ireland in the 2000 World Cup and was a major reason why the Irish side was so strong. He has enjoyed a Testimonial season in 2003 and will be looking to finish on a high with Ireland. He has made 18 appearances for Great Britain. A devastating second row forward, Chris won the Man of the Match award against Brisbane Broncos in the World Club Challenge to add to his two Harry Sutherland Trophy awards.

    James King – Barrow
    James joins up with the Irish squad after a successful season with Barrow Border Raiders in National League Two. A strong running second rower, Australian born King has an Irish passport due to his Irish born mother. James could be the surprise package of the European Nations Cup and a number of Super League clubs will be watching his progress.

    Richard Marshall – London
    Has spent two seasons at London after two seasons at Huddersfield Giants. Originally a product of the St. Helens Academy, Richard joined Halifax in 1993 and he gained extra experience by spending the 1994 close season on a scholarship at Manly in Australia. By the time Super League commenced in 1996 Richard was looking to establish himself in the Blue Sox first grade side. In 2000 Richard moved on to fellow Yorkshire side Huddersfield Giants and quickly established himself as a firm favourite at the McAlpine, winning the Player of the Year award in his first season

    Chris Maye – St Helens
    The 19-year-old loose forward joined St Helens at the start of this season from rivals Wigan Warriors. In order to gain first team experience he spent a month on loan at Halifax. He made his debut for Halifax at Leeds but unfortunately got injured just after half time. He returned later in the season for a second loan spell. Chris was part of the England Academy side that defeated Australia last season.

    Shayne McMenemy – Hull FC
    Australian forward Shayne McMenemy, 27, joined Hull from Halifax in July 2003 and suffered a dislocated elbow on his debut but has been given a two-year deal after showing good form since returning to action. He played for Ireland against France in 2001.

    Mick Slicker – Huddersfield
    Oldham born Slicker is a strong running forward who can make the 'big hits' in defence. Still only 25, he made a big impression last year in the NFP and has carried on that success in Super League. Mick played for Ireland in France in 2001 and will be a big part of the Irish pack this tournament.

    Rob Smyth – Warrington
    Rob has previously played with Wigan and London and has spent the last four seasons at Warrington. He has been released by Warrington for next season and will see the European Nations Cup as a great chance to show what he can do. Rob played for Ireland in 1999 and 2001. Rob played in the World Sevens in 2003, helping the Super League side reach the Final.

    Tony Stewart – St Helens
    Wigan-born youngster who turned professional from Hindley in 1994. Selected for Ireland in the 2000 World Cup but was forced to withdraw due to a hernia operation. Stewart scored 19 tries in 30 games for the Saints in 2002 and is Saints first choice right wing this season.

    News sent direct by Leeds Rhinos

    Meanwhile, in association with Pay-Pal, Scotland Rugby League can now allow you to purchase tickets for Scotland's Euro Nations fixture versus Ireland on Sunday 26th October.

    The match will be played at Old Anniesland, home of Glasgow Hawks RUFC, with a 2pm kick-off.

    Tickets, priced at £10 Stand & £6 ground with concessions available, can be purchased by clicking on

    http://www.scotlandrugbyleague.org.uk/irelandtickets.htm

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  2. Stevo_G

    Stevo_G Juniors

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    a pity brian carney aint available for the series
    they need a few more irish born in the team though but at least the tournament is on
     
  3. knights 2004

    knights 2004 Juniors

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    is that a good side (im australian)
    whose favourites to win?
    wales would be up there wouldnt it?
    hopefully it will do some good for the code in those countries.
    was a good move to put the challenge cup final in wales, hopefully that gathered a bit more interest in the game. i wonder how many welshians went to the CC final
     
  4. JasonE

    JasonE Bench

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    Gee thats a very young side, John Gallagher is only 17 and Tommy is 19 as is Chris Maye, Dean Gaskill and a couple more are 20, I guess these should be the backbone of the Irish team for many years to come hopefully.
     
  5. In-goal

    In-goal Bench

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    Ireland wil compete strongly but will be no match for the Likes of England, Wales and France.

    France will be abit unknown as they will retun to full strength for this series.
     

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