Leinster Academy 20-21

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Oldschoolsocks
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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by Oldschoolsocks »

Dave Cahill wrote:
March 7th, 2021, 4:44 pm
So can we expect to see Terry Kennedy and Jordan Conroy - two of the A list stars of Sevens rugby - on the wings against England next week?

Can we to f%~k.
we might see a certain Hugo Keenan though

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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by Dave Cahill »

Yes well I'm sure the hour or so of sevens rugby totally made the difference in his career and not the 15 years of minis, age grade, schools, age grade representative, academy, Leinster A and Leinster senior team rugby.
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OTT
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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by OTT »

Talking about Beirne and Thornbury as evidence we missed a trick with them is a bit harsh when they both came through our academy and it is probably the reason they are professionals and why other teams took a punt on them. I remember reading an article about Thornbury and how he was scaffolding in NZ and playing mitre 10 cup, doubtful he would have got in the door of one of their sides without the Leinster academy on the cv. Both of the lads were injured for a lot of their time with us and there were others who took their chance. Brilliant that they have both made decent careers elsewhere.

I’ve been following the Regan lad who is another example of someone with size and potential who struggled with injury (this time for Ulster) that hopefully does the business down in NZ and ends up back playing in Ireland, if he’s a success it will be said that Ulster should never have let him go but his father himself praised Ulster for how they helped the lad through his injuries and how they treated him. sh!t happens but the revisionism is not always necessary. Izzy probably getting the break that Regan missed out on because of injury, that’s life.
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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by mildlyinterested »

OTT wrote:
March 7th, 2021, 5:01 pm
Talking about Beirne and Thornbury as evidence we missed a trick with them is a bit harsh when they both came through our academy and it is probably the reason they are professionals and why other teams took a punt on them. I remember reading an article about Thornbury and how he was scaffolding in NZ and playing mitre 10 cup, doubtful he would have got in the door of one of their sides without the Leinster academy on the cv. Both of the lads were injured for a lot of their time with us and there were others who took their chance. Brilliant that they have both made decent careers elsewhere.

I’ve been following the Regan lad who is another example of someone with size and potential who struggled with injury (this time for Ulster) that hopefully does the business down in NZ and ends up back playing in Ireland, if he’s a success it will be said that Ulster should never have let him go but his father himself praised Ulster for how they helped the lad through his injuries and how they treated him. sh!t happens but the revisionism is not always necessary. Izzy probably getting the break that Regan missed out on because of injury, that’s life.
I dunno, Leinster needed locks in 2015 and were happy to rely on players like Mick Kearney and Ian Nagle instead of giving projects like Thornbury and Beirne game time they needed to develop. Ultimately both probably needed to leave to get better coaching, a fresh start and the required game time to reach their potential... but I certainly think it's interesting that two high upside athletes like that we released by Leinster and went on to be successful elsewhere..

Regan probably another example of someone who will have benefitted greatly from being exposed to NZ coaching, just like Beirne and Thornbury were.

Leinster have a lot to thank St. Michaels for, but overseeing the development of James Ryan and Ryan Baird is certainly up there near the top.
Last edited by mildlyinterested on March 7th, 2021, 5:16 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by LeRouxIsPHat »

OTT wrote:
March 7th, 2021, 5:01 pm
Talking about Beirne and Thornbury as evidence we missed a trick with them is a bit harsh when they both came through our academy and it is probably the reason they are professionals and why other teams took a punt on them. I remember reading an article about Thornbury and how he was scaffolding in NZ and playing mitre 10 cup, doubtful he would have got in the door of one of their sides without the Leinster academy on the cv. Both of the lads were injured for a lot of their time with us and there were others who took their chance. Brilliant that they have both made decent careers elsewhere.

I’ve been following the Regan lad who is another example of someone with size and potential who struggled with injury (this time for Ulster) that hopefully does the business down in NZ and ends up back playing in Ireland, if he’s a success it will be said that Ulster should never have let him go but his father himself praised Ulster for how they helped the lad through his injuries and how they treated him. sh!t happens but the revisionism is not always necessary. Izzy probably getting the break that Regan missed out on because of injury, that’s life.
+1

Plus we clearly do a brilliant job of bringing players through, literally the best in the world at it.

Also agree with ronk about 7’s helping. I was very much in the DC camp of not seeing the value in it but I think it’s quite clearly helped some players. No guarantees that they wouldn’t have developed anyway but I’m certainly not as against it as I used to be.

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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by mildlyinterested »

LeRouxIsPHat wrote:
March 7th, 2021, 5:13 pm
OTT wrote:
March 7th, 2021, 5:01 pm
Talking about Beirne and Thornbury as evidence we missed a trick with them is a bit harsh when they both came through our academy and it is probably the reason they are professionals and why other teams took a punt on them. I remember reading an article about Thornbury and how he was scaffolding in NZ and playing mitre 10 cup, doubtful he would have got in the door of one of their sides without the Leinster academy on the cv. Both of the lads were injured for a lot of their time with us and there were others who took their chance. Brilliant that they have both made decent careers elsewhere.

I’ve been following the Regan lad who is another example of someone with size and potential who struggled with injury (this time for Ulster) that hopefully does the business down in NZ and ends up back playing in Ireland, if he’s a success it will be said that Ulster should never have let him go but his father himself praised Ulster for how they helped the lad through his injuries and how they treated him. sh!t happens but the revisionism is not always necessary. Izzy probably getting the break that Regan missed out on because of injury, that’s life.
+1

Plus we clearly do a brilliant job of bringing players through, literally the best in the world at it.

Also agree with ronk about 7’s helping. I was very much in the DC camp of not seeing the value in it but I think it’s quite clearly helped some players. No guarantees that they wouldn’t have developed anyway but I’m certainly not as against it as I used to be.
we do a lot better job now at bringing players through than we did 5/6 or so years ago.

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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by hugonaut »

mildlyinterested wrote:
March 7th, 2021, 5:11 pm

Leinster have a lot to thank St. Michaels for, but overseeing the development of James Ryan and Ryan Baird is certainly up there near the top.
James Ryan could have gone to a hedge school and he'd be an international rugby player.

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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by hugonaut »

LeRouxIsPHat wrote:
March 7th, 2021, 5:13 pm
OTT wrote:
March 7th, 2021, 5:01 pm
Talking about Beirne and Thornbury as evidence we missed a trick with them is a bit harsh when they both came through our academy and it is probably the reason they are professionals and why other teams took a punt on them. I remember reading an article about Thornbury and how he was scaffolding in NZ and playing mitre 10 cup, doubtful he would have got in the door of one of their sides without the Leinster academy on the cv. Both of the lads were injured for a lot of their time with us and there were others who took their chance. Brilliant that they have both made decent careers elsewhere.

I’ve been following the Regan lad who is another example of someone with size and potential who struggled with injury (this time for Ulster) that hopefully does the business down in NZ and ends up back playing in Ireland, if he’s a success it will be said that Ulster should never have let him go but his father himself praised Ulster for how they helped the lad through his injuries and how they treated him. sh!t happens but the revisionism is not always necessary. Izzy probably getting the break that Regan missed out on because of injury, that’s life.
+1

Plus we clearly do a brilliant job of bringing players through, literally the best in the world at it.

Also agree with ronk about 7’s helping. I was very much in the DC camp of not seeing the value in it but I think it’s quite clearly helped some players. No guarantees that they wouldn’t have developed anyway but I’m certainly not as against it as I used to be.
+2, exactly the same opinion.

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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by mildlyinterested »

hugonaut wrote:
March 7th, 2021, 6:07 pm
mildlyinterested wrote:
March 7th, 2021, 5:11 pm

Leinster have a lot to thank St. Michaels for, but overseeing the development of James Ryan and Ryan Baird is certainly up there near the top.
James Ryan could have gone to a hedge school and he'd be an international rugby player.
would he have been ready for professional rugby as young as he was if he had went to said hedge school?

To have two locks at the age of 21 come through the same school, who are ready for top level professional rugby is remarkable and within 3 years of each other.

It's helped cover up that Leinster released two players at the position, one who has went on to be a top level intl and another who could.

As I said I don't think it would happen now, as they've learned some lessons but can't happen to think that they've missed on another future intl. in Izzy.

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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by Dave Cahill »

LeRouxIsPHat wrote:
March 7th, 2021, 5:13 pm
Also agree with ronk about 7’s helping. I was very much in the DC camp of not seeing the value in it but I think it’s quite clearly helped some players. No guarantees that they wouldn’t have developed anyway but I’m certainly not as against it as I used to be.
to clarify somewhat, I don't think the programme is without value. I think the actual game and it's 'skills' are of no use to professional rugby union players whatsoever. I believe its value is keeping 20-odd guys on a wage and within the system and giving them the opportunity to be full time professionals at an elite level.

The IRFU would get more benefit, in my opinion, in taking an ownership position in an Irish based Super League franchise. That would provide a better development pathway - Rugby League is far closer to Rugby Union than Sevens Rugby is.
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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by LeRouxIsPHat »

Dave Cahill wrote:
March 7th, 2021, 6:57 pm
LeRouxIsPHat wrote:
March 7th, 2021, 5:13 pm
Also agree with ronk about 7’s helping. I was very much in the DC camp of not seeing the value in it but I think it’s quite clearly helped some players. No guarantees that they wouldn’t have developed anyway but I’m certainly not as against it as I used to be.
to clarify somewhat, I don't think the programme is without value. I think the actual game and it's 'skills' are of no use to professional rugby union players whatsoever. I believe its value is keeping 20-odd guys on a wage and within the system and giving them the opportunity to be full time professionals at an elite level.

The IRFU would get more benefit, in my opinion, in taking an ownership position in an Irish based Super League franchise. That would provide a better development pathway - Rugby League is far closer to Rugby Union than Sevens Rugby is.
Yeah I still can’t see the crossover either really, it reminds me of tearing it up in tip in training/tag in the summer but then just hitting rucks and making tackles when playing real games.

But confidence is one thing that I’d say it can really help with and tbf the knock on effects of that can be huge.

We’re probably close to the stage now where we can do a good analysis of the type of players it’s helped to develop and then get better and better at sending the right players to it and reaping the benefits.

The numbers won’t be huge, especially if more and more players just want to play 7’s as opposed to it being a development tool, but sure even one a year could end up saving a province a fortune on a foreign signing.

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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by Ruckedtobits »

mildlyinterested wrote:
March 7th, 2021, 2:21 pm
No doubt it's hard calls to make, just think maybe leinster could take more chances on projects and athletes from non-traditional areas.. maybe..

Izzy's progress to pro 14 rugby has been very quick and with very little rugby played at lock, how leinster didn't see this potential and want to invest in it is of interest.

Moving on from Tadhg Beirne and Gavin Thornbury when they did too makes you wonder is there an indication in leinster to not invest in high upside athletes who may take a bit more time to develop over more solid and steady times.

It's not just limited to lock either, would Robert Balacoune have came through the leinster setup? I dunno..
It's rarely a binary decision as to who gets a place in the Academy or even Sub-Academy. There's a limited number of places. There's the desire to plan for positions in which it's evident that succession planning is needed and there's the 'quality of the crop' in a given year. All that before you even get to the question of player hunger for rugby success.

One other player of the same year as Balacoumbe who might have been recruited on a speculative basis was a Kilkenny College player called Anu Awunusi who is now on an athletics scholarship in Manhattan College. He played SCT v Roscrea possibly 5 years ago (DoB 1997) and looked like he could be a tight-head second-row for a decade. He's now aJunior International shot putt and discus thrower. It's never simple when it comes to recruitment to the Academy.

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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by mildlyinterested »

Ruckedtobits wrote:
March 7th, 2021, 7:49 pm
mildlyinterested wrote:
March 7th, 2021, 2:21 pm
No doubt it's hard calls to make, just think maybe leinster could take more chances on projects and athletes from non-traditional areas.. maybe..

Izzy's progress to pro 14 rugby has been very quick and with very little rugby played at lock, how leinster didn't see this potential and want to invest in it is of interest.

Moving on from Tadhg Beirne and Gavin Thornbury when they did too makes you wonder is there an indication in leinster to not invest in high upside athletes who may take a bit more time to develop over more solid and steady times.

It's not just limited to lock either, would Robert Balacoune have came through the leinster setup? I dunno..
It's rarely a binary decision as to who gets a place in the Academy or even Sub-Academy. There's a limited number of places. There's the desire to plan for positions in which it's evident that succession planning is needed and there's the 'quality of the crop' in a given year. All that before you even get to the question of player hunger for rugby success.

One other player of the same year as Balacoumbe who might have been recruited on a speculative basis was a Kilkenny College player called Anu Awunusi who is now on an athletics scholarship in Manhattan College. He played SCT v Roscrea possibly 5 years ago (DoB 1997) and looked like he could be a tight-head second-row for a decade. He's now Junior International shot putt and discus thrower. It's never simple when it comes to recruitment to the Academy.
I've never claimed it was simple.

I remember Anu Awonusi he certainly had the size but he didn't show huge rugby ability, he would have been the definition of a project but from what I remember he clearly saw he had a future with the Shot Put.

Lots of talented athletes go to Kilkenny College, not many top rugby players produced from there though. Didn't think there was any case for him to get an academy offer out of school, although I do believe leinster looked at him in underage teams he was always heading to the states for track.

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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by CiaranIrl »

Hugo Keenan wrote: “I played out-half in the Sevens game and you just get your hands on the ball so much. Looking back now, I appreciate how important that was in my development because it got me familiar with the first receiver role, which is obviously a big part of the way Leinster play and a big part of my role at full-back. That ability to get your hands on the ball and distribute it. It did wonders for my handling skills, my passing and overall decision-making.

... I think the benefits are there for everyone to see,” he adds.

“The experience of playing on the international stage in pressurised environments improved me as a rugby player and the skills you learn and are forced to use under pressure rounded my game in both attack and defence.

“There’s also the physical side of it too. You have to be fit, you have to be well conditioned and when you go back to the XVs game, you’re used to playing at that high intensity which definitely stands to you.”
No, it would be easy to rubbish this with something like, 'yeah, but he has to say that', but there's a lot of logic to what he's saying.
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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by Oldschoolsocks »

Dave Cahill wrote:
March 7th, 2021, 5:00 pm
Yes well I'm sure the hour or so of sevens rugby totally made the difference in his career and not the 15 years of minis, age grade, schools, age grade representative, academy, Leinster A and Leinster senior team rugby.
Yeah I know Terry Kennedy only ever played sevens, he’s pretty handy at it though right?

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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by Dave Cahill »


CiaranIrl wrote:
Hugo Keenan wrote: “I played out-half in the Sevens game and you just get your hands on the ball so much. Looking back now, I appreciate how important that was in my development because it got me familiar with the first receiver role, which is obviously a big part of the way Leinster play and a big part of my role at full-back. That ability to get your hands on the ball and distribute it. It did wonders for my handling skills, my passing and overall decision-making.

... I think the benefits are there for everyone to see,” he adds.

“The experience of playing on the international stage in pressurised environments improved me as a rugby player and the skills you learn and are forced to use under pressure rounded my game in both attack and defence.

“There’s also the physical side of it too. You have to be fit, you have to be well conditioned and when you go back to the XVs game, you’re used to playing at that high intensity which definitely stands to you.”
No, it would be easy to rubbish this with something like, 'yeah, but he has to say that', but there's a lot of logic to what he's saying.
There certainly is logic to it, but it only tests a tiny subset of what's needed in rugby union for half the players. It tests that tiny subset in twice as much space with half as many defenders.

The reality is that almost everyone who plays sevens does so after 10-15 years of development - but it's the time playing sevens that turns them into provincial regulars? Now that might be true, but until someone with no rugby background comes through the programme to be a provincial regular, it's highly questionable
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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by ronk »

The different skill set is why it sometimes works and why it often doesn't.

It's easy to see how it can challenge a winger who's used to making 3 carries and 4 tackles a game. Where the chance to try an outside break is rare, or even where you don't have the freedom to try a few wild offloads.

Mostly it's a game for specialists and the 7s impact is being puffed up to justify the program.

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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by mildlyinterested »

Sub-academy players pictured at senior training recently:

Jack Boyle(LH Prop) - u19
Tim Corkery(Outhalf) - u20
Chris Cosgrave(Back Three) - u20
Last edited by mildlyinterested on March 8th, 2021, 9:32 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by erskinechilders »

I think there are 3 main benefits for 7's,

Fitness & Workrate - You have to be able to sprint for pretty much the whole game
Defence - Your 1 on 1 tackling and decision making has to be spot on
Catch & Pass - Every player is expected to be able sling a 20 yard pass to get the ball out wide.

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Re: Leinster Academy 20-21

Post by mildlyinterested »

Looks like Andrew Smith is back training.

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