John Colgan, Blackrock College RFC President 2019-2020

It is a great honour for me to be President of Blackrock College RFC, a brand respected throughout the rugby world in its 137th year. I look forward to supporting all players and club members and to welcoming all visiting teams, supporters, families and friends through the season ahead.

I welcome James Blaney as our Head Coach and wish him every success. He has made a great start in recruiting some key players that will complement our young squad, a mix that promises to bring us forward well. Last season, our young senior squad battled well and will benefit greatly from the experience. We can now turn out attention to the job of getting promoted and creating a forward momentum to bring Blackrock College RFC back to the top table in AIL rugby.

The club is very proud of the individual and team successes that were achieved during the 2018-19 season. Most notably, the Under 14’s Cup win, along with the Women’s team runners up in the cup and league semi-final, the Seconds

promotion performance and our 20’s narrow semi-final loss to the eventual winners of

the Mc Corry Cup. We also congratulate our Rock representative players on bringing

extended glory to our club, we are very proud of you all.

This is a time of considerable change for rugby at our level in Ireland. Continued focus on

the professional layer of our sport has taken a toll on the AIL and we, along with all clubs

below the full professional game, must take responsibility to create a commercial model that

sustains the cornerstones of our clubs. Facilities such as our gym, high quality pitches,

ongoing medical care, travel… all require funding and are a significant challenge for most

clubs in AIL and Junior rugby. We are determined to carry on with our Five-Year Strategic

Plan and establish a firm commercial footing for Blackrock College RFC to perform at the

top levels in all of our team’s respective competitions. We want to promote a brand that is

attractive to players and supporters to become members and continue to enrich our club.

We all have a part to play in energising this position.

I repeat what our past president stated last year that it is my profound hope that what we

build over the next few years, will stand the test of time and will be a fitting testament to our

combined vision. I cannot accomplish this alone, so I am counting on your support to

achieve the growth and goals of the Five-Year Plan. A club is only as good as its members!

Funding is a key part of delivering this strategy and I would like to thank all those most

sincerely who have supported us in the past and continue to do so. I ask our supporters

and members to support all of our events and fundraising efforts and I look forward to

seeing you in our club on a regular basis.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all our sponsors for their continued generosity.

The club could not survive without the support we receive through these vital sponsors. I

encourage all club members to reciprocate support when possible to our club sponsors.

Blackrock College RFC is very much a community club and we welcome all sporting enthusiasts. We are pleased to have Cabinteely FC continue to use Stradbrook for their home matches. I wish the team continued success in building on their excellent first half season in 2019.

I extend our best wishes to the Bridge Club and their President Dorothy Collins and I look forward to welcoming all your members during the year.

Congratulations to Stephen Mullin who has been elected President of the Blackrock College Past Pupils Union. To our Club Patron Father Cormac O’Brolchain and our Pastoral Leader and great friend Father Tom Nash, and College Principal Alan MacGinty, we look forward to seeing you all in the club over the season. I would also like to thank last year’s President, Pappy Burke, along with past Executive Chairman, Declan Carroll, for their tremendous efforts. To this year’s executive committee, we have a great year in prospect. To the volunteers who work tirelessly, I cannot thank you enough. I encourage all others to step forward and help the few who do so much.

To our head coach, James Blaney, and our extended team of coaches, captains, managers and players from the minis to the seniors, I extend the club’s thanks and gratitude for your continual commitment and overwhelming dedication. I would also like to extend the warmest of welcomes to all new members, parents, supporters, and visitors to the club.

I wish you all the very best of rugby, health and happiness and look forward to the season ahead.
John Colgan

2. John Colgan - President.jpg