Old Belvedere

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Old Belvedere
Full name Old Belvedere Rugby Football Club
Union IRFU
Leinster
Nickname(s) Belvo
Founded 1930
Ground(s) Anglesea Road, Ballsbridge (Capacity: ~1000)
President Declan O'Dowda
Coach(es) Paul Cunningham
Captain(s) Daniel Riordan
Team kit
Official website
www.oldbelvedere.ie

Old Belvedere is a senior rugby club in Dublin, Ireland, based at Anglesea Road and playing in Division 1A of the All-Ireland League. Old Belvedere R.F.C. was founded in 1930. Originally an exclusive club for past pupils of Belvedere College the club became 'open' to all players on 22 April 1976.

Great players[edit]

In March 1948, Karl Mullen, as captain and hooker, led Ireland to unprecedented heights, when not only the Triple Crown and Championship were won, but also for the first time in Irish rugby history, the Grand Slam was won. Also in the Ireland pack was Des O’Brien who accumulated 20 Ireland caps in his career. In March 1949, again under Mullen’s captaincy the Triple Crown was retained.

In 1955, Tony O'Reilly, less than 12 months after playing in the Leinster Schools Senior Cup Final against Blackrock College, and then a member of Old Belvedere R.F.C., won his first international cap. A remarkable career had commenced which was to cover 16 seasons in international terms and embrace two Lions tours and 29 caps.

Following his outstanding 1979 performances for Ireland in Australia, Ollie Campbell at outhalf orchestrated Ireland’s Triple Crown win in 1982. Campbell also featured on Lions' selections, on tours of South Africa and New Zealand, and was Old Belvedere’s captain in the club’s jubilee year.

Seven in a row[edit]

In the period 1940 to 1946 Old Belvedere R.F.C., won the Leinster Senior Cup in seven successive seasons - a feat that remains unequalled - and was narrowly beaten in the final the following season.

More recently[edit]

In the season 1992/93 the First XV, captained by Mervyn Feely, coached by Donal Spring, and with former All Black scrum half Bruce Deans making a significant contribution, won the Leinster League. That win ensured the club a place in the All Ireland League Division 2 for the season 1993/1994. In season 1994/1995, the club progressed further, and ended top of A.I.L. Division 2, thus earning promotion to Division 1 of the All Ireland League. That team was again coached by Donal Spring, but now had Gareth Dinneen as captain, and featured Neil Francis in the 2nd row, (who in his career as a player with Blackrock College, London Irish, and Old Belvedere, accumulated 35 Ireland Caps). The Club enjoyed Division 1 status for three years thereafter, and now[when?] seeks to emulate that achievement by again securing Promotion from Division 2 to Division 1. In 2000, the Club’s youthful First Team Squad won the Leinster Championship, and in the season 2001/2002, club members Andy Dunne and Simon Keogh contributed to Leinster’s victory in the inaugural Celtic League, and Henry Bourke was a member of the Connacht Squad.

In the 2006/07 season Old Belvedere led by Scott "The Scott" Hutton took the Leinster Senior Cup and in a year of years went on to win Division 2 and promotion to division one. The following season captained by David Shanley they finished 8th in division one.

Old Belvedere won the final of the 2011 All-Ireland League defeating Cork Constitution 20-17 on 1 May 2011. This made them the first Leinster side to win the title since 2000.

Other Teams[edit]

Old Belvedere RFC boasts two senior men's teams playing in AIL Division 1 and Metro League J1. There are also three women's teams playing in AIL Division 1, Leinster League Division 1 and Leinster League Division 4.

There are also 3 Junior men teams in Metro Leagues J2, J3 and J4

External links[edit]