Kilkenny Rugby Club held a Gala evening with Irish rugby legend Brian O’Driscoll at Cillin Hill last Saturday - riasing funds for future developments at the club’s grounds on the Waterford Road.
O’Driscoll, capped over 100 times for Ireland and a player who captained his country on 83 occasions, was given a heart-warming Kilkenny reception. Retired this year from the international game, regard and adminartion for the Leinster star was very much eveident amongst the 600 or so guests who turned up on the night.
O’Driscoll’s autopbiography is out on October 23, and the interviewer for the evening - Oisin Langan of Newstalk - referred to the book as the player looked back on a glorious career of Grand Slam and Triple Crown triumphs, and successful Lions tours.
Also in attendance at the function were two greats of the game - our own Willie Duggan and Fergus Slattery who both paid tribute to O’Driscoll. And there were questions from the floor from former Leinster captaion Chris Pimm, EU commissioner Phil Hogan and eight time All-Ireland SHC medal winner Eddie Brennan.
The fund raising will hopefully develop the ladies game at the club, and also among the attendance were Irish lady rugby internationls - including Caroline Mahon from Jenkinstown - back from their successful run in the World Cup where they defeated the All-Blacks and reached the semi-finals.
The night itself was a great success, superbly organised with a one hour talk from O’Driscoll before an auction of items took place with Fonsie Mealy taking bids. Everything from prints and pictures to tickets games rasied thousands more for the club.