West Harbour RFC
|Full name||West Harbour (1995-)
Western Suburbs DRUFC (1900–94)
|Location||Concord, Sydney, Australia|
|Ground(s)||Concord Oval (Capacity: 20,000)|
The West Harbour Rugby Football Club is a team in the Shute Shield, the premier club rugby union football competition in New South Wales. The club is based in Concord in the Inner West of Sydney, and plays home matches at Concord Oval. Concord holds a place in rugby history as a venue for the inaugural Rugby World Cup in 1987. West Harbour's major sponsor is Burwood RSL and post match functions are held at Club Burwood.
Joe Barakat has been announced as the Head Coach for 2015. Barakat returns to West Harbour after five years with the NSW Waratahs and five years combined with two Japanese Top League teams NTT Shining Arcs and Toshiba Brave Lupus
- Uniform colors: Black, White and Red
- Premiership Titles: 2 titles: 1902, 1929
The first rugby club to represent the district was Burwood which competed in the Sydney Metropolitan competition until the introduction of district rugby. Western Suburbs District Rugby Union Football Club was formed in 1900 and won the premiership in its third year of competition, in 1902. The club's first captain and Wallaby representative was Stan Wickham, he was joined by Ward and Wheat Prentice.
A second premiership was won in 1929, spearheaded by another international Sid King, this remains the club's last premiership in top flight rugby. In 1951 the club was demoted from First division and it was not until 1966 that they were re-instated. The club saw success in the 1970s, with a 17 match winning streak leading to a club championship and a grand final berth in which they were defeated by Randwick.
The club was relegated once more in 1980 only to be re-instated the following year. In the 1980s the club's home ground, Concord Oval, was redeveloped with assistance from the NSWRU and State Government. The newly named Waratah Stadium became the home base of the Waratahs as well as the venue for the classic semi-final in 1987 between Australia and France in the inaugural Rugby World Cup.
The club changed its name to West Harbour Rugby Football Club in 1995, which coincided with a revival in the club's fortunes. The club produced a number of under age Australian representatives and Super 12 players as well as internationals Steve Devine, Pierre Hola and Des Tuiavii, all of whom represented different nations. When Lote Tuqiri crossed from rugby league to union in 2003, he signed to play with West Harbour. Super 12 and national commitments have restricted him to a handful of appearances for the club
The West Harbour women's team was formed in 1999 and has dominated the Sydney competition, winning their 5th premiership in 2004. The club's juniors now field twelve teams alongside the five senior and four colts teams. A surplus of players meant that the club now also field three sides in the Subdistrict competition. In 2006, former Scotland and Leinster coach, Matt Williams joined the club as head coach. Matt Williams has returned to Europe. The Club is now Coached by Matt Briggs. The recent League convert to Rugby Timana Tahu was contracted to West Harbour Pirates, but he has now returned to League, as has Tuqiri.
Former players who have represented other nations
Current Super Rugby players
- Salesi Ma'afu, (Brumbies)
- Sam Wykes, (Western Force)
- Rory Sidey, (Waratahs)
- Alofa Alofa, (Waratahs)
- Jack Debreczeni, (Melbourne Rebels)