Ireland national rugby union team

Article

August 13, 2022

The Ireland rugby union team, nicknamed the Clover XV, brings together the best professional players from Ireland as well as Northern Ireland in major international rugby union competitions, the Rugby World Cup to XV and the Six Nations Tournament (called Tournament in the rest of the article for less repetition). The Ireland national rugby team represents unified Ireland (both Ireland and Northern Ireland) with a strong presence in certain geographic areas. This situation is unique among international rugby teams because the Irish team is the only one to bring together two different political entities, Ireland having found itself divided on December 6, 1922 (official recognition by the United Kingdom of the independence of the Irish Free State). Ireland participate in the Six Nations Tournament. His record in this competition is fourteen victories including three Grand Slams in 1948, 2009 and 2018 with eight victories shared for a total of 22 victories, including those won in the 2014 and 2015 editions. Ireland also participates in the World Cup since its creation but it has never passed the stage of the quarter-finals. Ireland has successfully made the transition from amateurism to professionalism since 1995. It has achieved good results despite the country having only six million inhabitants and the sport competing with Gaelic sports (hurling, camogie and Gaelic football) and football. The Irish selection can rely on the potential of the four provinces of the country: Munster, Leinster, Ulster, Connacht. The Irish play in green and white with a club over the heart. The IRFU has been responsible for managing the Irish rugby union team since 1874. The Clover XV traditionally plays at home at the Lansdowne Road stadium (Dublin), owned by the IRFU, since 1878. Since 2007 and especially for their first match of the Six Nations Tournament against England, the Irish played in the stadium usually devoted to Gaelic sports, Croke Park, due to the renovation of Lansdowne Road. In order to solve the problem of the "two anthems", Amhrán na bhFiann (the soldier's song) for some of the players, and God Save The Queen for the others, Team Ireland adopted Ireland's Call, specifically composed as as the official anthem for its international matches. Today, the Irish team is considered one of the best national teams in the world. As of March 19, 2018, it is second in the national rugby team standings. On November 5, 2016 in Chicago, the XV of Ireland beat the team of New Zealand for the first time in its history, that is to say 111 years, (40-29), ending a record series of invincibility of the All Blacks which had lasted since 2015 and eighteen consecutive official meetings. In 2019, during the World Cup in Japan, the Irish saw their journey come to an end in the quarter-finals against the All Blacks with a score of 46-14.

History

Introduction of rugby in Ireland and first international meeting

It all starts with caid, a sport played in Ireland, which has strong similarities with rugby. This discipline is practiced in a defined space, with a determined number of players. In 1854 in the city of Cork, Peter Shorten founded a club. In 1867, Trinity Second XV played several matches against Saint Columba's College and Hume High Street, two schools in Leinster, and also against the Royal School of Dungannon, a school in the north of the country. Following the adoption of a series of new rules in 1868, rugby football began to spread throughout Ireland. In 1874, the Irish Football Union (reconstituted as the Irish Rugby Football Union, after unification with the Union of Northern Ireland) was formed. L'