Devine and Jennings: Reaching new heights

16 April 2024

Devine and Jennings: Reaching new heights

Ballinasloe is a town in East Galway that has plenty to be proud of, one of many being the number of players they have invloved with Connacht Rugby and the Irish Rugby women's squad.

On the international front, recent weeks have seen Beibhinn Parsons, Aoibheann Really and Méabh Deely pull on the green jersey for Ireland in the Six Nations while Matthew Devine, Shane Jennings, Colm Reilly and Oisin McCormack represent the town in Pete Wilkins squad. 

Last Sunday in Treviso, Shane Jennings started on the wing while Matthew came on at scrum half. The two men spoke to media today as Connacht get ready for Zebre this Saturday at Dexcom Stadium (Tickets on sale).

"Sunday was tough to take but thankfully we have a chance to play again this weekend and show what we're about" said Devine

Shane Jennings also gave his view on the game in Italy.

"It was was very hot and not ideal for a man of my complextion" 

"We were disappointed with the result obvisouly"

"We know there's so much more we could have done better in that game but the game is gone now"

"If we look at the positives though, coming away from Benetton with four tries is good going"

The current Connacht squad has plenty of talent to choose from, especially the younger group who come from the province like Cathal Forde, Darragh Murray and Matthew and Shane. A group that have got to gel coming up through the ranks.

"Myself, Mattie (Devine) and Colm (Reilly) all grew up together and went to the same school" said Jennings

"Cathal (Forde) and Darragh (Murray) we have been playing with since we were sixteen"

"We've gone from fighting with each other at minis and the whole way up throught the underage ranks, we are very good mates and it is very enjoyable to play alongside them"

Last week it was announced that Matthew signed his first professional contract with the club. He spoke about becoming a professional.

"I was delighted to sign my first contract"

"There was a lot of hard work to get here"

"I've been playing since I was four or five"

"Dad got me into playing the game and I loved it"

"When you get to that stage of playing U18/19 with Connacht and then play with the Irish underage teams you start to think that this is a path I can go down"

"I'm grateful that I have got this chance and look forward to it"