Rugby Players Ireland

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Rugby Players Ireland
Rugby Players Ireland logo
Rugby Players Ireland logo
Full name Rugby Players Ireland
Founded 2001
Key people Rob Kearney (Chairman)
Office location Clonskeagh, Dublin
Country Ireland

The Rugby Players Ireland is the representative body for professional rugby players in Ireland. Founded in October 2001, its aims are to promote and protect the welfare of professional rugby players in Ireland.[1][2] The Chief Executive Officer is Omar Hassanein and Rob Kearney is its current chairman.[3] Its headquarters are in Clonskeagh in Dublin.


The associations objectives are:-

  • To promote and protect the welfare of its members, both during and after their careers.
  • To cater for the educational and welfare needs of its members, to ensure that they have sufficient preparation for the life after rugby.
  • To work in partnership with the IRFU to further the cause of Rugby Union in Ireland.
  • To be the representative mouthpiece for professional rugby players on issues of importance to the game.[4]


Player Services Programme[edit]

Rugby Players Ireland provides a Player Services Advisor. This provides player guidance on all aspects of their career, including education, personal development to prepare them for the transition to life after professional rugby.[2]

Contract negotiations and dispute resolution[edit]

The association acts as a negotiator between players and their employer. They are involved with negotiating group contracts in areas such as match and win bonuses and act as a go-between in the event of disputes.[5] This includes bringing industrial action if necessary [6]


In October 2001 Ireland's professional rugby players set up the Irish Rugby Union Players' Association. Over 95% of all players with a contract with the IRFU joined the new body. Liam Toland and Peter McKenna were appointed Chairman and Secretary.[4]

In 2003, the members of the association realised the need for a full time employee and former Ireland International Niall Woods was appointed the first full time Chief Executive Officer.[4]

On 12 April 2017, the organization changed its name from the Irish Rugby Union Players Association (IRUPA) to Rugby Players Ireland.[7]


2008 and 2010 IRUPA Players player of the year; Tommy Bowe

Rugby Players Ireland has run the annunal Rugby Players Ireland Awards dinner from 2002 which gives recognition to rugby players in a number of categories. The awards dinner is run to support the injured players fund.[8] The most prestigious award is the Players' Player of the Year award which is voted for by playing members of Rugby Players Ireland.

List of Players' Player of the Year award winners[edit]

Year Player Team
2003 Malcolm O'Kelly Leinster[9]
2004 Gordon D'Arcy Leinster[10]
2005 Johnny O'Connor London Wasps [11]
2006 Paul O'Connell Munster [12]
2007 Gordon D'Arcy Leinster [13]
2008 Tommy Bowe Ospreys [14]
2009 Brian O'Driscoll Leinster[15]
2010 Tommy Bowe * Ospreys [14]
2011 Isa Nacewa Leinster[16]
2012 Rob Kearney Leinster[17]
2013 Nick Williams Ulster[17]
2014 Andrew Trimble Ulster[17]
2015 Paul O'Connell Munster[18]
2016 CJ Stander Munster[19]
2017 Conor Murray Munster[20]

* Tommy Bowe was also awarded the 2010 WRPA Players Player of the Year Award. [21]

Other awards[edit]

Other awards include the Young Player of the Year award, Try of the Year and the Unsung Hero as well as the Hall of Fame.

List of Hall of Fame inductees[edit]

The Rugby Players Ireland Hall of Fame includes the following members:

Year Inductee(s)
2003 Mick Galwey, Peter Clohessy
2004 Keith Wood, Paddy Johns
2005 Eric Elwood
2006 Jeremy Davidson
2007 Victor Costello
2008 David Humphreys
2009 Anthony Foley
2010 Girvan Dempsey
2011 Malcolm O'Kelly
2012 John Hayes
2013 Denis Hickie
2014 Simon Best
2015 David Wallace
2016 Ronan O'Gara
2017 Geordan Murphy


Injured players fund[edit]

Rugby Players Ireland administers the injured players fund which provides support to players who are forced to retire from rugby due to illness or injury. The fund is reliant on individual and corporate donations.[23] The Rugby Players Ireland annual awards dinner is also a major part of the its fundraising activity.[24] Following the 2010 Haiti earthquake, Rugby Players Ireland made a donation of €20,000 from the injured players fund to assist with relief efforts through aid agency Concern.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "IRUPA HOME PAGE". IRUPA. Retrieved 3 June 2010. 
  2. ^ a b "Preparing for the life less ordinary". Irish Independent. 15 September 2008. Retrieved 3 June 2010. 
  3. ^ a b "IRUPA Members Donate €20,000 to Concern Earthquake Appeal". Emerald Rugby. 15 January 2010. Retrieved 6 June 2010. 
  4. ^ a b c "ABOUT US". IRUPA. Retrieved 3 June 2010. 
  5. ^ "IRFU meeting IRUPA over pay dispute". RTÉ. 19 November 2004. Retrieved 6 June 2010. 
  6. ^ "IRFU 'disrespectful', claim players". 25 May 2004. Retrieved 6 June 2010. 
  7. ^ "IRUPA to become 'Rugby Players Ireland'". Irish Rugby Football Union. 12 April 2017. Retrieved 5 November 2017. 
  8. ^ "The Irish Rugby Union Players' Association has announced the nominations for Player of the Year for 2010". 27 April 2010. Archived from the original on 7 May 2010. Retrieved 3 June 2010. 
  9. ^ "IRUPA Mira Rugby Players Awards 2003". IRUPA. 19 May 2003. Retrieved 3 June 2010. 
  10. ^ "IRUPA Awards". 20 May 2004. Archived from the original on 21 November 2007. Retrieved 3 June 2010. 
  11. ^ "O'Connor wins Irish players gong". BBC. 5 May 2005. Retrieved 3 June 2010. [dead link]
  12. ^ "BT IRUPA Rugby Players Awards 2006". IRUPA. 15 May 2006. Retrieved 3 June 2010. 
  13. ^ "D'Arcy picks up second Players' Player gong". RTÉ. 25 April 2007. Archived from the original on 30 June 2007. Retrieved 3 June 2010. 
  14. ^ a b "Bowe Voted Irish Players' Player Of The Year". 12 May 2010. Archived from the original on 16 May 2010. Retrieved 3 June 2010. 
  15. ^ "O'Driscoll Chosen As IRUPA Players' Player Of The Year". 6 May 2009. Archived from the original on 28 May 2010. Retrieved 3 June 2010. 
  16. ^ "Nacewa scoops IRUPA award". 4 May 2011. Retrieved 7 May 2011. 
  17. ^ a b c Sara Jane English (3 May 2015). "12 Years of IRUPA Awards – Stats & Facts". Retrieved 12 May 2015. 
  18. ^ "Paul O'Connell Players' Player of the Year 2015". 14 May 2015. Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  19. ^ "Outstanding CJ Stander does the double at annual IRUPA awards". 4 May 2016. Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  20. ^ "Murray Voted Rugby Players Ireland Player of the Year". 11 May 2017. Retrieved 11 May 2017. 
  21. ^ "Bowe scoops Welsh honour". 19 May 2010. Retrieved 10 October 2010. 
  22. ^ "Hall of Fame". IRUPA. Retrieved 6 June 2010. 
  23. ^ "Injured players fund". IRUPA. Retrieved 3 June 2010. 
  24. ^ "IRUPA Award Nominees Announced". 9 April 2009. Archived from the original on 13 April 2008. Retrieved 6 June 2010. 

External link[edit]