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    Connacht 2010 - 2011



    rte.ie/sport


    Muldoon to stay on as Connacht captain
    Wednesday, 11 August 2010 09:11


    New Connacht coach Eric Elwood has announced that back-rower John Muldoon will captain Connacht again this season.


    Elwood took over from Michael Bradley at the end of last season and he has opted for continuity by retaining the Portumna man, who impressed for both province and country last year.


    With Muldoon leading from the front, Connacht scored victories over Leinster and the Cardiff Blues, as well as an Amlin Challenge Cup run that ended with a narrow defeat to French powerhouse Toulon.


    The 28-year-old toured the southern hemisphere with Ireland this summer but had to return home to after breaking his arm in Ireland's heavy defeat to New Zealand.


    But the Portumna man has already returned to training and he is looking forward to returning to full duty in October, a month after the Magners League gets underway.


    He said: 'I was very disappointed coming off the field against New Zealand as I knew I had done serious damage and would be out for a bit but I was delighted when Eric showed his faith in me by appointing me as the captain again.


    'It is a great honour to lead your province out onto the field and we are all looking forward the start of the season, hopefully we can take the momentum from the end of last season and bring that forward into this year.'


    Elwood has also retained the majority of his squad from last year, though there are some switches.


    Former Leinster and Ulster scrum-half Cillian Willis replaces the retired Kieran Campbell, Ezra Taylor comes in for the departed George Naoupu and young stars Darragh Fanning and Shane Monahan join the senior rank.



    Elwood believes he has the right formula for a winning side.


    He said: 'I am very happy with the continuity of the squad from last year and we will try and build on that. Ezra is coming from the Queensland Reds and has played at a high level and we will give him every opportunity to prove himself here.


    'We've also brought in young, hungry players such as Darragh and Shane and this is their opportunity to show and develop their skills in the Magners' League and in Europe.'
    Excellence is hard to keep quite - Sherrie Coale

    #2


    The one year contracts has really tied elwoods hands behind his back. Looking at the squad changes it really will be a miricle if Connacht can improve their league position this year. We really needed a couple of big additions to be competitive.


    Most promising aspect is the all irish fornt rows of loughney (very impressive towards the end of last season when he switched to LH), Wilkinson, Hagen, Cronin, Flavinand NIQ Morrisin supporting role.


    We will really need to be fortunate in the injury stakes and lucky with fixture reshuffles unlike last year.


    Good luck for the season.





    Comment


      #3


      irishtimes.com - Last Updated: Wednesday, August 11, 2010, 14:03


      Connacht pencil in Samoa fixture


      Rugby: Connacht have lined-up an international match against Samoa to be played at the Sportsground on Tuesday, November 9th, subject to final approval from the International Rugby Board (IRB).


      Connacht boss Gerry Kelly said he was “99 per cent certain” the fixture will go ahead.


      “We are delighted to have a fixture of this calibre in the Sportsground, it continues a tradition of national teams visiting the west,” said Kelly, noting that season tickets will be valid for the game.


      “Portugal played here (200[img]smileys/cool.gif[/img] and South Africa in 2007, the year they went on to win the World Cup, so we are well used to hosting teams from other nations.”


      The western province have an association with Samoa as Gavin Willams and Ofisa Treveranus were both capped by the Samoan national side having played with Connacht, while Ray Ofisa and Niva Ta’auso (current Connacht players) are also from the Navigators Islands.


      As part of their autumn northern hemisphere tour, Samoa plan to play Ireland, England and Scotland before returning for a one-off test match against Japan.


      Excellence is hard to keep quite - Sherrie Coale

      Comment


        #4

        Eric Elwood has named his squad for this Friday’s game against Harlequins at the Sportsground, Galway. The 27 man squad includes Summer signings Ezra Taylor, Cillian Willis, Shane Monahan and Darragh Fanning while long-serving flanker Johnny O’Connor deputises as captain for the injured John Muldoon.
        Connacht v Harlequins - Friday 13<SUP>th</SUP> August, 6.30pm, the Sportsground, Galway


        1 Brett Wilkinson


        2 Adrian Flavin


        3 Jamie Hagan


        4 Michael Swift


        5 Bernie Upton


        6 Andrew Browne


        7 Johnny O’Connor (C)


        8 Mike McComish


        9 Conor O’Loughlin


        10 Ian Keatley


        11 Fionn Carr


        12 Aidan Wynne


        13 Niva Ta’auso


        14 Tiernan O’Halloran


        15 Troy Nathan
        Replacements from: Rob Sweeney , Dermot Murphy, Dave Nolan, Mike McCarthy, Ray Ofisa, Ezra Taylor, Eoin Griffin, Keith Matthews, Miah Nikora, Darragh Fanning, Shane Monahan, Cillian Willis
        http://www.connachtrugby.ie/20100811...acht-team-to-f ace-harlequins
        A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.
        Albert Einstein

        Comment


          #5
          Connacht Rugby have announced they will play a match against Manu Samoa at the Sportsground on Tuesday, November the 9<SUP>th</SUP>. The glamorous fixture is still subject to final IRB approval but CEO of Connacht Rugby, Gerry Kelly, said he was 99% certain there would be no issue with that. “We are delighted to have a fixture of this calibre in the Sportsground, it continues a tradition of National teams visiting the West, Portugal played here the year before last and South Africa played here in 2007, the year they went onto win the World Cup, so we are well used to hosting teams from other nations. Season tickets will be valid for this match and we are hoping that the midweek fixture will enable plenty of people who cannot make weekend games to attend.”
          Connacht Rugby has a long association with Samoa, Gavin Willams and Ofisa Treveranus have both been capped by the Samoan National side having played with Connacht, whilst Ray Ofisa and Niva Ta’auso (both regulars on the Connacht team) also hail from the Navigators Islands.
          Manu Samoa will play Ireland, England and Scotland before returning to play a one off test match against Japan as part of their October tour to the Northern Hemisphere.
          http://www.connachtrugby.ie/20100811...acht-to-play-m anu-samoa-in-november
          A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.
          Albert Einstein

          Comment


            #6


            Note that a Rob Sweeney is listed among the subs for "warm up" match against Harlequins. Is this the St Mary's prop who had a good game in the AIL final against Cork Con? If it is, he was part of leinster squad some years back, maybe at development level. May have spent some time playing riugby in uK and also did a spell at Clontarf. Showed great potential as a schoolboy ("Chops") when he won Leinster schools medal. But lacked a commitment to doing the hard graft of training. But maybe he can be worked on as he is in mid twenties say 26/27. Props mature late!


            Was not listed as a signing by Connacht for this season so perhaps he is being given a trial.


            Anyone know anything about this?

            Comment


              #7
              I think he has been signed on an initial 3 month contract.

              Comment


                #8


                check out boot camp





                http://www.connachtrugby.ie/20100809...acht-and-the-c urragh
                Say no to Lee Jeans and black pointy shoes!

                Comment


                  #9


                  Connacht were defeated 40 – 7 by Harlequins at the Sportsground on Friday evening.



                  Both teams opened with flowing rugby and it looked like Connacht were getting the better of the opening exchanges but it was Harlequins who crossed the line first, after 14 minutes centre Jordan Turner-Hall touched down in the corner. Connacht were dealt a harsh blow when captain Johnny O’Connor was stretchered off after 15 minutes with a hip injury. Harlequins scored the next 2 tries through Matt Cairns and Mike Browne before scrumhalf Conor O’Loughlin crossed for Connacht just before half-time, which Ian Keatley converted leaving the score 7 points to 21 to the visitors at the break.



                  The second half saw a number of changes to both teams with Eric Elwood taking the opportunity to see some of the new recruits in action. Darragh Fanning, Shane Monahan, Cillian Willis and Ezra Taylor all getting good game time and making the best of the occasion as did homegrown talent Dermot Murphy, Eoin Griffin and Dennis Buckley when they came on. With both teams playing open and expansive rugby it was only going to be a matter of time before one side took control and Harlequins put the game beyond Connacht’s reach with three tries in ten minutes from Tom Williams, Ceri Jones and Gonzalo Camachot with Rory Clegg converting two of them to leave the final score Connacht 7, Harlequins 40.



                  Speaking after the match Director of Rugby Eric Elwood said “We were very slow in our transition from attack to defence, you have to make your tackles, work hard on your defence to get the ball back and I though some of their scores were quite easily preventable.”
                  “That’s a disappointing result, to concede 6 tries at home, our focus now is to rectify some of the areas that were highlighted, we have to respect and generate fast go-forward ball and work on our defence as well, that’s not how Connacht teams defend”



                  Connacht face Saracens next Saturday 6.30pm in the Sportsground in the final prematch fixture before the Magners’ League kicks off on the 4th of September with a home fixture against the Dragons.



                  Connacht: T Nathan, T O’Halloran, N Ta’auso, A Wynne, F Carr, I Keatley, C O’Loughlin, B Wilkinson, A Flavin, J Hagan, M Swift, B Upton, A Browne, J O’Connor (C), M McComish.


                  Replacements: Ray Ofisa for O’Connor 15mins, Mike CcCarthy for Swift 40mins, Cillian Willis for O’Loughlin 40mins, Miah Nikora for Keatley 40miins, Rob Sweeney for Hagan 51mins, Ezra Taylor for Browne 61mins, Shane Monahan for O’Halloran 56mins, Dermot Murphy for Flavin 63mins, Eoin Griffin for Ta’auso 64mins, Dave Nolan for McComish 64miins, Darragh Fanning for Carr 69mins, Dennis Buckley for Brett Wilkinson 76mins.


                  Harlequins: M Brown, T Williams, O Smith, J Turner-hall, G Lowe, N Evans, K Dickson, J Marler, M Cairns, M Lambert, O Kohn, T Vallejos, C York, W Skinner (C), T Guest


                  Replacements: Joe Gray, Ceri Jones, James Johnston, Peter Browne, Lewis Stevenson, David Moore, Rory Clegg, Charlie Mattews, Tom Casson, Gonzalo Camacho
                  Unrepentant Langer

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Rancid and a sign of things to come.
                    I always knew Madigan was a closet Scrum Half. Ignore All things that suggest Continuity.

                    Comment


                      #11


                      Originally posted by Lazarus
                      Originally posted by The Outlaw
                      Rancid and a sign of things to come.
                      Was it really that poor,considering it was only a preseason run out ??

                      Still not a semblance of a defensive system. Basic.
                      I always knew Madigan was a closet Scrum Half. Ignore All things that suggest Continuity.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Why are they a diiferent team when the marquee teams come to the Sportsground? It surely can't all be down to adrenalin and underdog fighting spirit. There was a lot of optimism around only just back in April after they spanked Dublin English in the Magners (and still had 3 potential avenues to the Heineken Cup) and then took the fight to the the superstars of Toulon. They reminded me of Munster a decade ago then, stirring stuff.
                        Unrepentant Langer

                        Comment


                          #13


                          Icouldn't makethe game this evening, its a worrying scoreline,but it was only a friendly with about half of the first team selection, no need to write off a season based on one friendly, lets at least wait until after the Ulster game in round 4 of the MLto pass proper judgement on howConnacht's season will go.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            And why can't they ever beat Ulster,in a practical sense the only real derby game that matters ? Was it 1960 or something since they last beat them? A win over Ulster at some stage is vital for Connacht, just to put the s**tters up Ulster more than anything else that their HEC place is not guarunteed.Ulster have been falling into the safety net for the last few years, safe in the knowledge its always there for them when they fall ,pitifully, off the rope. Easiest HEC qualification of the whole competition, must make some of the English and French sick.
                            Unrepentant Langer

                            Comment


                              #15


                              Originally posted by Lazarus
                              Originally posted by The Outlaw
                              Rancid and a sign of things to come.
                              Was it really that poor,considering it was only a preseason run out ??

                              Allowing 6 tries in. Going to be a long long season for Connacht[img]smileys/sad.gif[/img]
                              Excellence is hard to keep quite - Sherrie Coale

                              Comment

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