Rugby League Ireland has confirmed that their 2015 season will be sponsored by international pub chain McGettigan’s.
The agreement will see the McGettigan’s branding on all the teams involved in rugby league in the country including community clubs, schools, students, State of Origin sides, wheelchair and the senior international team.
It also sees rugby league coming to the historic Carlisle Grounds in Bray, where the Student 4 Nations tournament will be held.
Speaking at the announcement, Rugby League Ireland director Richard Egan said, “RLI are delighted to announce McGettigan’s as our title sponsor and we are thrilled with the opportunities that this presents us in our further development of the sport in Ireland.
“McGettigan’s is a company that is expanding around the world and is at an exciting time in its growth and there are parallels between our organizations. Rugby league was first played in Dublin around the time that Jim McGettigan opened his first bar and now we are both looking to the future.”
Dennis McGettigan, CEO of McGettigan’s added, “We are extremely excited to team up with Rugby League Ireland. Sport is a massive part of what we do and having the McGettigan’s logo on the Irish team kits is something we are very proud of. We hope this is the start of a long and wonderful relationship with RLI.”
The 2015 McGettigan’s All Ireland League will start on 9 May with a McGettigan’s 9’s tournament; the respective McGettigan’s Ulster, Leinster and Munster championships kicking off the following week and culminating in the All Ireland Grand Final on the 1 August.
Bray will host the Student 4 Nations from 14-19 June with teams from England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales competing. The Royal Hotel Bray will host the nations and the games will take place at the Carlisle Grounds on the Sunday, Tuesday and Friday of that week.
After the completion of the domestic season, the McGettigan’s State Of Origin will be held with the Republic of Ireland Eagles looking to retain their title against the Northern Ireland Elks. A Leinster venue will host one game on 8 August with the return fixture in Northern Ireland the following week, after which senior international sides will be chosen of both domestic players to face developing European nations and the for the 2015 European Championship, which Ireland lost on point’s difference last year.
All of the matches are seen as part of the build up to the 2016 European Qualifiers, which will see Ireland seeded, for the World Cup in 2017.
McGettigan’s Pub was first opened in Ireland in the 1960’s on Queen Street in Dublin by Jim McGettigan. The business now has outlets in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Donegal and soon Limerick.