‘COUPERS LOOPERS’ TOPS IN TAG RUGBY FINALS | News | Buccaneers Rugby Football Club Athlone

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published:Jul  30   2018

A new name has been added to the list of overall winners at Buccaneers Tag Rugby annual league tournament with Coupers Loopers coming out on top of this summer’s leagues contested at Dubarry Park. Last year’s championship bowl victors, Coupers Loopers now qualify for the IRFU Volkswagen Tag series.


This season’s league in Athlone had been played in exceptionally fine weather but that changed to normal midlands moisture for last Friday’s sextet of finals in Athlone. However, the exchanges were not dampened and five of the six deciders provided high-scoring and very entertaining contests with the only low-scoring affair ending in a draw.


Champions for the past two summers, Springbuccs were unable to make it a hat-trick of triumphs when going down to Coupers Loopers 23-18 in a spirited Champions Cup final with the extra pep in the new champions squad proving too hot for the defending champions.


Tic Tag just pipped Wu Tag Clan 33-31 in a thrilling Conference Cup final. Tic Tag have been regular competitors in the league and were well due this their maiden success at the tournament. The youthful Wu Tag Clan gained some consolation when being runaway winners of the fancy dress award at the presentations later that night.


The presentation of the various awards took place in The Bounty where Buccaneers President Gordon Ballantyne thanked all the players and teams who had participated in this popular tournament. He gratefully acknowledged the work put in by the organisers, especially Yvonne O’Shea, Billy McMickan, Jacqui Leech and Derek Ryan. The key contribution made by the referees was also acknowledged as was the input of the IRFU’s Justin Deegan and David Keane, while The Bounty was thanked for the complimentary BBQ provided.


In concluding, Gordon asked that Kieran Cleary, whose brothers Conor and Keelan also played in the league, be kept in everyone’s thoughts and prayers.


Tag League finals results:-

Championship Cup                 Coupers Loopers 23 Springbuccs 18

Championship Plate               Must Tag Sally 27 Inglorious Passers 20

Championship Bowl               Hanley’s Heroes 34 Young Buccs 24

Conference Cup                     Tic Tag 33 Wu Tag Clan 31

Conference Plate                   Octotaggers 26 S Tag 7  23

Conference Bowl                    Bounty Boozers 11 Karma Taggers 11




This season’s All-Ireland League fixtures list has just been unveiled and Buccaneers open their AIL campaign with a tasty home fixture against Naas on October 6th. Their first away game follows on the 13th with a first ever match against Banbridge, the Co. Down club that has moved up the divisions in recent seasons.


Buccs face five Ulster clubs this season --- Banbridge, Ballynahinch, City of Armagh, Malone and Ballymena. The remaining quartet of clubs in Division 1B are from Leinster --- Naas plus a trio of Dublin sides Old Belvedere, Old Wesley and St. Mary’s College. 1B looks like being as competitive as ever but the Pirates have retained virtually all last season’s playing squad whilst adding a number of acquisitions as well a new head coach in Peter O’Donnell. Consequently, the midlanders believe they can be in the hunt for promotion but will need to hit the ground running. Training continues primarily on Tuesdays and Thursdays in Dubarry Park when all players should be ready to go on the paddock at 7 p.m. New players always welcome to come along.


In the meantime, Buccaneers have four Connacht Senior League outings prior to the AIL. They commence the defence of this title away to Ballina on August 25th. This will be a stern test as the north-westerners went through last season unbeaten in Connacht and then winning all three round robin matches to qualify for the AIL for the first time.



Aug. 25            Ballina                                     (A)                    CSL     

Sep. 1              Sligo                                        (H)                    CSL     

Sep. 8              Galwegians                             (H)                    CSL                             

Sep. 15            Corinthians                             (A)                    CSL                 

Oct. 6              Naas                                        (H)                    AIL

Oct. 13            Banbridge                               (A)                    AIL                  

Oct. 20            Old Wesley                             (H)                    AIL

Oct. 27            Ballynahinch                           (A)                    AIL       Halloween

Nov. 3             Malone                                    (H)                    AIL

Nov. 17           Connacht Cup semi-final                               CSC

Nov. 24           St. Mary’s College                 (A)                    AIL

Dec. 1              City of Armagh                      (H)                    AIL

Dec. 8              Old Belvedere                        (A)                    AIL

Dec. 15            Ballymena                               (H)                    AIL


Jan. 5               Connacht Cup final                                        CSC

Jan. 12             Bateman Cup semi-final

Jan. 19             Ballymena                               (A)                    AIL

Jan. 26             Old Belvedere                                    (H)                    AIL

Feb. 16            City of Armagh                      (A)                    AIL

Feb. 23            St. Mary’s College                 (H)                    AIL      

Mar. 2              Malone                                    (A)                    AIL      

Mar. 9              Ballynahinch                           (H)                    AIL

Mar. 23            Old Wesley                             (A)                    AIL

Apr. 6              Banbridge                               (H)                    AIL

Apr. 13            Naas                                        (A)                    AIL

Apr. 20            Bateman Cup final                                                      Easter

Apr. 27            AIL Semi-final

May. 4             AIL Final


AIL = All-Ireland League; CSL = Connacht Senior League;

CSC = Connacht Senior Cup.




There is good demand for tickets for the Connacht v Wasps match which takes place in a little over two weeks time at Dubarry Park on Saturday, August 18th. Kick off time is 3 p.m. for this season opener between the home province, for whom it will be their first match under new head coach Andy Friend, and the English Premiership visitors whose squad is full of noted international players. It looks like a game and occasion not to be missed. Log on to www.connachtrugby.ie to book your tickets in good time! Buccaneers are hosting a pre-match function that includes 3-course meal with wine and complimentary stand ticket. Groups or individuals can be catered for. Email rugby@dubarrypark.com to book or for further details.



Connacht Rugby Summer Camp for boys and girls aged 6 to 13 years old takes place shortly in Dubarry Park, Athlone, from Monday, August 13th to Friday 17th. Full details including application form are available on the Connacht Rugby website.




Deepest sympathy is extended to Buccaneers Chairman of Football Billy McMickan and family on the death of his father Walter. Sincere condolences also go to the family of the late Joe Burke, Taughmaconnell