J4 Rugby: Passion, flair and joué

What it takes to play social sport

This September, while casual rugby fans have been fixated by the goings on at RWC ‘23, the true rugby purists have been anticipating the greatest sporting comeback since Michael Jordan’s 1998 Chicago Bulls: The return of junior rugby. Men from all across the country journeyed back to College Park for possibly the best rugby to have been played on campus, maybe ever. Aside from the endless humour, which always follows futile attempts to learn fifty new names on the season’s debut, the best sport came from new tackle height regulations. With all (legal) hits needing to register below the sternum, and with some of the greatest athletes Trinity College has ever seen, more offloads were thrown than ever before. If they weren’t already camped out in Bayonne, you’d think the Flying Fijians had taken to the pitch – throwing the ball around in outrageous fashion. You’d also think it was a bar of soap being tossed about, with established squad members pairing their two left feet with two left hands. 

With Greystones RFC and Dublin Doggos to kick off the J3’s and J4’s respective campaigns on September 30th, there may be some serious work to be done on the pitch in preparation. There are broncos to be run and long summers on the beer to be sweated out. Skills certainly need to be sharpened if last year’s heights are to be met and success to be repeated. Dodgy knees need to be strengthened at the gym, and that nasty shoulder injury will have to be rehabbed as well. It’s a long season ahead. With key senior players returning for a crack at back-to-back league promotions, Greystones RFC and other giants of metro league division six will want to watch out! DUFC are coming. The seasoned veterans of the lower end of metro rugby understand that winning is all about having a brand of rugby, and sticking to that style. And if that style isn’t working, double down. You’ll never find a Trinity team looking to out-muscle their opposition. Neither will they moneyball the game with that South African ‘death by a thousand 3 point penalties’. Trinity teams, and this junior side in particular, are all about out-working the opposition and playing with flair. Trinity plays all the rugby. It’s a running game which can only be likened to that old french joué – the ‘try from the end of the world’ stuff only dreamt of by the average player. 

Off the pitch however the squad is in full swing with numerous pilgrimages to the Pav, rehydrating after strenuous work on the pitch. While you may choose your poison (alcoholic or otherwise), no man would be caught dead missing out on the festivities that follow the arduous Wednesday evenings on the pitch. If you think this sounds like a bit of you, why not give it a try!

The Junior Rugby team trains every Wednesday at 7 in College Park.