Ireland make it to RLWC semi-final qualifier

Apologies as I took my eye off this with all the action across the pond. After Samoa beat Tonga on Friday, the naissant Ireland rugby league side needed to beat Samoa by at least 5 points to progress in the competition. Pat Richards scored a hat-trick of tries as the Irish won convincingly by 34 points to 12 to upset the odds and the pundits with the Pacific islanders indiscipline once again proving costly. It looks like they will face the Fijians for a place in the semis on Monday barring a miracle for Scotland who have to beat Fiji by at least 28 points to progress at Fiji’s expense in the game starting now.
Update Fiji it is. The Scots won but only narrowly. Ireland have a definite opportunity.

  • It was Sammy McNally what done it

    More of a Union man myself – how many ‘proper’ padz in the team?

  • slug it out

    Shoulder padz?

  • Dave Hartin


    See here.

    I think it’s 3 or 4.

  • dosser

    Ireland have a player called Wayne Kerr.

    Isn’t that a ‘joke’ name you ring up bars and get the landlord to ask ‘is there a Wayne Kerr?’

  • Dec

    There’s five in the squad (I’m including Pat Richards whose parents are from Dublin and who holds an Irish passport).

  • bollix

    I also prefer Union, a much more nuanced and rounded game IMO.
    Still, i quite enjoy watching rugby league. lets hope ireland continue to do well.
    it is a bizarre qualifying system though to get into the final. practically all the teams in the top pool table get a good shot at getting into the finals, whereas there is only one spot in the final for all the other teams in the other 2 pool tables.

  • Dublin voter

    More of a Union man myself – how many ‘proper’ padz in the team?

    On this site Sammy, you’d need to be more definitive with your language. What’s a “proper pad”? Any proper billz on board?

  • The Yankee Fellow

    They made a semi-final unlike a team that did not get out of their group.

  • It was Sammy Mc Nally what done it

    DublinVoter – for full defintions.

    Example of Proper Pad: Andrew Trimble

    Example on Improper Pad: Tony Cascarino.

    But 3 or 4 aint bad – probably beats the number in Jack’s team.

  • Donnacha

    Fantastic result and a real hammering for Samoa. Nice to see they weren’t just there to make up the numbers (although from the post-pool play stage they most certainly are.)

  • abucs

    Cricket, Gaelic international rules and now rugby league.

    What’s next – baseball ? :o)

  • Dave Hartin

    What you mean them?

  • abucs

    Thanks for the link Dave.

  • Spelling bee (or “nothing in Sluggerdom is unpolitical”):

    I was caught by Dave Hartin @ 09:55 AM‘s use of the less-common spelling, naissant. This is, primarily, a term in heraldry. It describes a wild beast, most often a lion, emerging from the middle of a shield. In a sport like RL, that’s a better posture than being dormant or couchant.

    Of course, it’s another example of the great divide in our local culture. West Brits, like me, might unconsciously go for the Latinate nascent. True nationalists have to go with Dave Hartin @ 09:55 AM‘s preference, in honour of Tomás Mac Donnchadha (writing as Thomas MacDonagh) in “Literature in Ireland” [Dublin, Talbot Press, 1916: and, I believe, still in print]:

    Dealing with a naissant literature or with two naissant literatures … [criticism in Ireland] looks over its shoulder, as it were.

  • Dave Hartin



    I’m not really sure if you’re paying me a complement, having a go or demonstrating a constructive critique of my writing/vocabulary but I’m impressed that you’ve taken the time to do a bit of research. I did check the spelling before publishing but that’s the way I’ve always used naissant – I must confess I was unaware of its heraldic significance.

    As for my subconscious nationalism, I’m sure those who disapprove of my blogging on “garrison games” like cricket and RL would disagree with you and would probably term me a “West Brit” like yourself. Given my (also subconscious) use of “the mainland” previously in relation to GB and the tirade that that generated, my identity remains as confused as ever, now perhaps more so!

  • Dave Hartin @ 11:05 AM:

    I’m not really sure if you’re paying me a complement, having a go or demonstrating a constructive critique of my writing/vocabulary…

    Nah! Just having a laugh at my own peculiarities.

    And enjoying the infinite variety that you and others bring to this site.

    Keep up the good work.

  • Dave Hartin

    Thanks, Malcolm 🙂

  • slug it out

    I haven’t really got Malcolm’s ability to challenge your spelling or use of language, but may I question your historical knowledge of rugby league in these islands?

    RL is probably the least deserving of the term “garrison sport” and it is only in the last 15 to 20 years that we have been let anywhere near a garrison. So many false obstacles were put in the way of the sport being introduced – insurance issues, it would lead to “morale and discipline” problems, no officers were available to “sponsor” the sport, etc – that there was probably much more chance of GAA games being introduced.

    We really were seen as a pariah sport by the establishment and the attiude was that the working class recruits from the north of England could learn a civilsed pastime now that they were in the armed forces.

    Still, the last 20 years has seen progress and it has now taken its place amongst most other sports in the British military. The officers seem happy as they’ve discovered that the game demands discipline, controlled aggression, teamwork, fitness, commitment, mental and physical strength and toughness from its players – in fact all the attributes service personnel should have.

  • slug it out

    Congratulations to the Irish team on its success, by the way.

  • Dave Hartin

    slug it out

    I’m not going to argue the substance of your post and I don’t like the term “garrison game” anyway (hence the quotes) but one could argue that the game it originated from and that it shares many similarities with would be referred to by some as such.

  • slug it out

    Dave Hartin

    Fair enough;)

    One other thing about the game in relation to Ireland. Although the sport hasn’t been played on the island for very long, or at that high a standard, the games’s development and growth in Britain, as with so many other aspects of life, owes much to the contribution made by Irish migrants in places like Wigan.

  • slug it out @ 12:04 PM and Dave Hartin @ 12:10 PM:

    Garrison games?

    I recall reading Andrew Sinclair’s (first?) novel, The Breaking of Bumbo. This was an account of the young National Service officer, just down from Cambridge, joining a Guards Regiment. By no coincidence, Sinclair is ex-public school, ex-Cambridge, Coldstreamer. Today he is better known for being a guru on the Rosslyn Chapel, Knights Templar, and similar froth.

    Bumbo includes an episode in which the main character is put in charge of the rugby team: he, naturally, is a Union man; the squaddies are the meat of the team, all north-of-England League men.

    Long ago I mislaid my copy (it was a red-back Penguin, so it must have disintegrated decades back), otherwise you would be regaled with a suitable quotation. So, my loss is your gain.

    However, let us be reminded of the old Dublin axiom:

    Soccer is a game for gentlemen, played by gurriers.
    Rugby is a game for gurriers, played by gentlemen.
    Gaelic is a game for gurriers, played by gurriers.

    Now fit RL into that.

  • slug it out

    RL was for a long, long time a game that was “beyond the pale” in Britain. Your reference from “The Breaking of Bumbo” reminds me of the legendary scrum-half Alex Murphy. A brilliant talent, he discovered on starting his national service that there were no opportunities to play the game he loved so he was forced to play union. He made the Army representative team in no time, the ban on RL players ignored in the forces. What you describe was a typical experience for many northern working class lads “getting some in”.

    As for your list, I have alway been struck by the way both GAA and RL have deep cultural roots in the communities they have grown from. Colin Welland, the actor and script-writer, once described how RL informed so much of the non-sporting life and language of its communities: “In south west Lancashire babies don’t toddle, they side-step. Queuing women talk of ‘nipping round the blindside’. Rugby league provides our cultural adrenalin. It’s a physical manifestation of our rules of life, comradeship, honest endeavour, and a staunch, often ponderous, allegiance to fair-play”.

    That last sentence gives some sort of ideal of what the game should be and there have been many gentlemen (in the truest sense of the word) who have been involved in the game. There has always been a need for a certain amount of gurrier-ness in its participants, though, so I would go for (in Dublinese):

    Rugby League is a game for gentlemen-gurriers, played by gentlemen-gurriers.

  • I don’t know whether this little bit of information improves the ranking of the Irish rugby league players on the gurrier scale or the gentleman scale[is there a difference?] – but I was listening to newstalk last night and heard one of the team’s coaching staff reveal that each team member and a substantial number of the coaching staff had got an Irish saying – Ni Neart go Cur Le Chéile/No strength without unity – tattooed on their bodies. He wasn’t specific as to where….

    I commend their commitment to the Irish language but there’s no need to go that far. Why not get that motto emblazoned on their jerseys?

    In fact, I think this would be a good idea for the Irish “Gentleman” rugby team also – they should have the name of the country on their jerseys as Gaeilge – as the Welsh have Cymru on their jerseys and the Scots have Alba on their jerseys. It may be too late to do it for the autumn internationals – but why not do it for the Six Nations in the Spring?

    Recently the Irish soccer team have included the name Éire on their jerseys and, following my own one man campaign, the GAA International Rules team followed suit. Now the ball’s in the court of the rugby players and, no doubt, our cricket heroes as well!

  • Tochais Si­orai­

    The most famous Irish RL team have to be the Belfast Boilermakers from the best-selling 1970s novel Trinity by Leon Uris.

  • Dublin voter

    Sammy McNally: “ – for full defintions.

    Example of Proper Pad: Andrew Trimble

    Example on Improper Pad: Tony Cascarino.

    But 3 or 4 aint bad – probably beats the number in Jack’s team.”

    Thanks for that Sammy. I couldn’t get that link to work. But to take your two examples and your cut at Jack’s team – I’ve no problem with Andrew Trimble or anyone born on this island being described as a Proper Pad, unless they object to that description themselves. If Andrew played soccer and wanted to play for ROI, I’d be delighted (as long as he was good enough). But I take massive umbrage at your description of the Ice Cream Man as an Improper Pad. There was nothing improper about his header at Lansdowne back in 91 that took a point off the Saxon foe. I followed Jack’s team and you could never beat them. I was behind the goal in Stuttgart when Houghton put the ball in the England net.
    Mick, I demand that you give a yellow card to anyone who casts asparagus on Jack’s team.

  • Sergei

    properpadzrus appears to be a googlewhack