200 boys and girls from five midlands schools took to the field this week to round off their annual rugby programme which started after Easter and has become very popular over the years in Athlone.

The schools which took part were An Grianan NS, Tubberclair NS, Ballybay NS, Cornafulla NS and Scoil Na gCeithre Maistri.

Boys and Girls from 4th 5th and 6th class played in three separate competitions across three pitches where players had a chance to show off their newly acquired rugby skills.

There was so much to be impressed about in terms of the players performance including their handling skills and decision making however across the board the standard of excellent tackling after just 6 weeks of training was remarkable as many players have played little or no rugby before.

Buccs coaches were on hand to oversee the day and referee some very enjoyable games and everyone was in agreement that the standard this year was fantastic.

Conor Galvin, Connacht Coach Development Officer:

“It is great to see this tournament continue to improve each year. We have seen so many players that went on to play schools rugby locally and club rugby for Buccaneers because of trying it in school for the first time. Over the years I have even seen players go on to wear the Connacht and Irish Jersey which is fantastic.”

Charlie Couper, Buccaneers RFC:

“All the thanks has to go to the principals and teachers for being so supportive, the players for giving it a go and our volunteers for giving up their time today- we hope to grow the tournament even further next year and see plenty of these girls and boys playing more rugby”

Special mention goes to Buccaneers RFC who had the facilities in fantastic conditions for today and continue to support schools rugby in the area.

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