Proud, strong, skillful and intelligent this new breed at CIYMS Rugby Club are preparing themselves for the biggest season in nearly a decade. Next season they will compete in Kukri Qualifying 1 rugby.
As you will be aware Q1 is the highest level of junior rugby in Ulster. It is a big step up!
Formed in 1922 this is a club that has been there before and while the game has changed alot in the last few yeas never mind 10 or 20 the core principles remain the same, get your scrum right, give the backs a platform to work from, practce the lineout, “no missed tackles”, you cannot be too fit, or too strong.
In short – Excellence Is Required.
CIYMS is a club with an immense tradition. Players on the squad today know that over the years the number on the jersey they wear will very possibly have been worn by an Irish International or even a British & Irish Lion!
Those who understand the rugby psychi will know that all care for the concerns of normal life and civilisation while they may be more important take a back seat at training and particularly on game day. The gladiatorial nature of the sport and the fact that any XV literally pit their physical strength, fitness and intelligence against the opposition in full physical contact brings out such an immense concentration from the players that their really are very few experiences quite like playing rugby.
At CIYMS you will find a club that have that spark of success which comes only from developing a centre of excellence. The management of the club know quality when they see it and have assembled a squad of 50 or more players to fulfill their fixtures.
But what is it like to put on the jersey at CIYMS, we were given priveleged access to the changing rooms, which had been adorned (as on match day) with the jerseys and pictures of CIYMS legends, famous moments throughout the club of magical success – a success lived this season by the promotion winning CIYMS – the videos below in the changing rooms with coach Graham Cloke and team manager Frank Elliott say it all! Followed by Richard Heasley commenting on the past season
CIYMS boasts an extended squad of 50+ players not to mention the III Xv & III XV all competing from grounds in Belmont, Belfast. While the I XV achieved promotion the II XV have had an immense season and are focused on promotion themselves narowly missing out this season. Intouch Rugby was delighted to cover many of the I, II, III & IV XV this season and below is a range of videos and interviews compiled over the course of this season.
We begin with Duncan Gleadhill CIYMS II XV Captain who comments on the II XV. Following from that the players player of the season Mark McConkey comments on coming straight from Campbell College to play at CIYMS and being part of the promotion winning side. You will notice that CIYMS in various interviews have shown a willingness to play the young guys on the I XV and in fact would see this as integral to their success this season. As a young vibrant club the extended squad covering the I & II XV are at the business end of the club but the seasoned club members on the III XV & the IV Xv are playing because they, in most instances still can. Their influence and enjoyment for the game cannot be underestimated and below we reproduce some of the footage of the III XV and an interview with their captain Andrew Fraser + highlights of that game. Following that is some footage from some of the CIYMS legends playing against the Perrenials.
AN AWESOME SEASON for the II XV – CLUB ETHOS – PASSION – AND COMMITMENT – CIYMS has been simmering now for a few years, building all the time, putting in place the structures for success and implementing them on the pitch.
Experience and the new energy of talented young players combines to win when it counts. The coming season is a big step up and it will be that very same combination of seasoned and new talent that will maintain them.
Throughout the club the ethos is there, belief, passion, enjoyment, brotherhood, the winning mentality, the total truth. Watch words of the rugby machine, building men, building friendships.
The golden age of rugby, young and old, the optimism for the Saturday run out stays with the CIYMS Old Boys who may spend quite a bit of time in the bar but still grab the boots out of the garage sticking on the black and white jersey to do battle.
The future is the youth and minis. A club without connections to schools and a developed minis section will struggle. CIYMS has one of the best Minis sections of any club and we caught up with convenor Richard Weir to get an overview of the minis and below this article is a link to some of the articles form intouch rugby covering CIYMS minis this season and for the MINIS website CLICK HERE ably assisted by Stuart Kane ofwww.letexcel.com
In February 2011 CIYMS became one of the first eight clubs in Ireland to be awarded the new IRFU Club Excellence Award. Indeed CIYMS is one of only two Ulster clubs to have been awarded this award. The other being Randalstown.
The IRFU Club Excellence Award is a Club Accreditation Scheme developed by the Irish Rugby Football Union and aims to promote best practice across a number of key areas.
Clubs are assessed in a two stage process; firstly by submitting a portfolio of evidence which shows how they meet a number of the scheme’s criteria and then, once the portfolio has been submitted and assessed, a club visit is organised where the remaining criteria is assessed on site.
The programme is subdivided into the following defined sections:
• Club Management & Structure
• Development Programmes
• Health and Safety
The IRFU Club Excellence Award has been developed in conjunction with Sport NI and as such all clubs in Northern Ireland who receive the IRFU Club Excellence Award also automatically receive Sport NI’s Clubmark accreditation.
The awarding of the IRFU Club Excellence Award shows that CIYMS has its structure firmly in place indicating that it is a well run club operating to ‘best practices’ as it strives to recapture the success of former years.
All in all – WHAT A CLUB:
Barry Kernaghan comments here as incoming club president on the promotion and entering Q1, we hope to catch up with everyone in CIYMS next season
The Club History
CIYMS stands for the Church of Ireland Young Mens Society is made up of 14 sections with a membership of over 1300.
The Rugby Club was formed in 1922 playing in the Minor League. CIYMS progressed through the Junior Leagues winning the past players Cup in 1939. In 1946/47 season the club gained promotion to the Senior League also reaching the Senior Cup Final.
In 1952/53 four CIYMS teams contested the finals of cup competitions with the 1st XV winning the Senior Cup and the 4th XV the Harden Cup.
Thereafter the following successes were achieved;
1970/71 1st XV won Senior League
1971/72 1st XV won the Senior League & Senior Cup
1972/73 1st XV shared the Senior Cup with Ballymena
1973/74 1st XV won the Senior League & Senior Cup
1977/78 1st XV won the Senior Cup
1987/88 1st XV won Senior League B
In all 12 members of the club have gained International Caps, three of these have played on Lions Tours. Very many members have represented and captained both Senior and Junior Ulster.
Three club members have been Presidents of the Ulster Branch of IRFU:
InTouch recently caught up with one of the CIYMS IReland Internationals Eddie Grant, his interview is next:
Now for the coverage compiled by InTouch over the course of this season. Below you will find match reports, interviews and information from across the club – ENJOY!
CLICK HERE For CIYMS v Enniskillen
CLICK HERE For League Winning Report
CLICK HERE For CIYMS mini Rugby Festival