More commonly known as Connacht, this Irish rugby union team is based in Galway, and represent rugby union in the Irish province of Connacht. They play in a predominantly green jersey, black shorts, and green and black socks. Like the provincial flag of Connacht, the Connacht rugby crest consists of an eagle, and a sword wielding arm. In the past Connacht Rugby have competed in the European Challenge Cup. This season however, they will concentrate their efforts in the Heineken Cup.
The Historical Home of Connacht Rugby
Since the late 1920's, Connacht Rugby have played all their home games from the inhospitable and no frills arena of Galway Sportsground. This venue is a fierce and unforgiving place for teams to visit in the bleak Irish midwinter. In an age where rugby is becoming more and more commercialised, the Sportsground's spartan glory harks back to an earlier, less professional, but more romantic era of the great game, where no quarter was asked or given.
Threat of Closure
Designated as a development team by the Irish Rugby Football Union (IRFU), Connacht Rugby, receives only half the budget of other Irish Provincial teams, and the IRFU has suggested closing the club in recent years to cut costs. This attitude is a continual source of aggravation for Connacht Rugby's loyal tribe of supporters, who point to their club's persistent success in the European Challenge Cup as a means to silence all the doubters.
Connacht Rugby's playing population is smaller compared with the other provinces, and as such, a large number of their squad are recruited from elsewhere in the Emerald Isle. Promising native Connacht Rugby players are often poached by the other three Irish provinces, but recently a string of prominent players have chosen to stay with the club, which bodes well for the future.