All-Ireland League (rugby union)

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All-Ireland League
Ulster Bank All-Ireland League logo.jpg
Sport Rugby union
Instituted 1990
Number of teams 50
Nations Ireland Ireland
Holders Clontarf (2015-16)
Most titles Shannon RFC (9 titles)

The All-Ireland League (AIL), known for sponsorship reasons as the Ulster Bank All-Ireland League, is the national league system for the 50 senior rugby union clubs in Ireland, covering both the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. The league was inaugurated in the 1990–91 season.

The league is the second highest level of rugby union in Ireland, as professional teams representing the four provinces of Ireland play in the Pro12.

Division 1 sides are allowed to field only two professional players in their matchday sides, and only one may be a forward. Professional players may not participate in Division 2 matches. Foreign professional players may not play in the League.[1]


The All-Ireland League has been dominated by teams from Limerick who have won 13 out of 23 titles. Teams from Munster have won 17 out of 23. The All-Ireland League was not sponsored in the initial season, but was sponsored for six years by Insurance Corporation of Ireland. The League was sponsored by Allied Irish Banks from 1998 to 2010.[2] Ulster Bank has sponsored the league since 2010.[3]

Tournament format[edit]

The league is divided into five divisions of ten teams each, with teams playing each other twice (once at home and once away).[4] At the end of the season, the top four teams in Division 1A play off semi-finals and a final for the championship and the bottom team in Divisions 1A is replaced by the top team in Division 1B, with the second-bottom team entering a promotion/relegation play-off with the second-placed team in 1B. The bottom two teams in 1B, 2A and 2B are relegated and replaced by the top two teams from Divisions 2A, 2B and 2C respectively. The two teams finishing bottom of Division 2C are relegated to the relevant provincial league and replaced by the two teams finishing top of a "round robin" tournament between the four provincial league winners. The four provincial junior leagues are the Connacht Junior League, the Leinster League, the Munster Junior League and the Ulster Qualifying League.

Previous winners[edit]

1990-91 Cork Constitution
1991-92 Garryowen
1992-93 Young Munster
1993-94 Garryowen
1994-95 Shannon
1995-96 Shannon
1996-97 Shannon
1997-98 Shannon
1998-99 Cork Constitution
1999-2000 St Mary's College
2000-01 Dungannon
2001-02 Shannon

2002-03 Ballymena
2003-04 Shannon
2004-05 Shannon
2005-06 Shannon
2006-07 Garryowen
2007-08 Cork Constitution
2008-09 Shannon
2009-10 Cork Constitution
2010-11 Old Belvedere
2011-12[5] St Mary's College
2012-13 Lansdowne
2013-14 Clontarf
2014-15 Lansdowne[6]
2015-16 Clontarf[7]

Total wins by club[edit]


Division placing are from the 2016-17 season.

Division 1A[edit]

Team Location Stadium Capacity
Clontarf Dublin (Clontarf) Castle Avenue 3,200
Cork Constitution Cork (Ballintemple) Temple Hill 1,000
Dublin University Dublin College Park 200
Garryowen Limerick Dooradoyle 1,500
Lansdowne Dublin (Ballsbridge) Aviva Stadium (Back Pitch) 1,000
Old Belvedere Dublin (Ballsbridge) Anglesea Road 1,000
St Mary's College Dublin (Templeogue) Templeville Road 4,000
Terenure College Dublin (Terenure) Lakelands Park 3,000
UCD Dublin (Belfield) UCD Bowl 3,000
Young Munster Limerick Tom Clifford Park 1,000

Division 1B[edit]

Team Location Stadium Capacity
Ballynahinch Down Ballymacarn Park 1,000
Ballymena Antrim Eaton Park 1,000
Buccaneers Athlone Dubarry Park 10,000
Dolphin Cork Musgrave Park 9,251
Galwegians Galway Crowley Park 2,000
Naas Kildare Forenaughts 3,000
Old Wesley Dublin (Donnybrook) Donnybrook Rugby Ground 7,000
Shannon Limerick Thomond Park 26,500
UCC Cork Mardyke 5,000
UL Bohemians Limerick Thomond Park 26,500

Division 2A[edit]

Team Location Stadium Capacity
Banbridge Banbridge Rifle Park 1,000
Belfast Harlequins Belfast Deramore Park 1,000
Blackrock College Dublin (Blackrock) Stradbrook Road 4,000
Cashel Cashel Spafield 2,500
Galway Corinthians Galway Corinthian Park 1,000
Highfield Cork Woodleigh Park 4,000
Malone Belfast (Cregagh) Gibson Park 1,000
Nenagh Ormond Nenagh New Ormond Park 1,000
Queen's University Belfast Dub Lane 1,000
Sundays Well Cork Musgrave Park 9,251

Division 2B[edit]

Team Location Stadium Capacity
Armagh Armagh Palace Grounds 1,000
Bective Rangers Dublin (Donnybrook) Donnybrook Rugby Ground 7,000
City of Derry Derry (Strathfoyle) Judges Road 1,000
Dungannon Dungannon Stevenson Park 1,000
Greystones Greystones Dr Hickey Park 1,000
MU Barnhall Leixlip Parsonstown 1,000
Old Crescent Limerick Rosbrien 4,000
Skerries Dublin (Skerries) Holmpatrick 1,000
Thomond Limerick Liam Fitzgerald Park 1,000
Wanderers Dublin (Ballsbridge) Merrion Road 1,000

Division 2C[edit]

Team Location Stadium Capacity
Bangor Bangor Upritchard Park
Boyne Drogheda Shamrock Lodge 1,000
Bruff Bruff Kilballyowen Park 1,000
Kanturk Kanturk Knocknacolan 1,000
Midleton Midleton Towns Park 400
Navan Navan Balreask Old 1,000
Rainey Old Boys Magherafelt Hatrick Park 1,000
Seapoint Dublin (Killiney) Kilbogget Park 4,000
Sligo Strandhill Hamilton Park 1,000
Tullamore Tullamore Spollanstown 1,000

See also[edit]

External links[edit]