Ireland

Ireland v England, Official highlights, 3rd March 2015

Ireland v France, Official highlights, 14th Feb 2015

Italy v Ireland, Official highlights, 07th Feb 2015

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IRISH RUGBY

The Irish Rugby Football Union (IRFU) is the governing body for rugby union in Ireland. The IRFU is divided into five branches. The four main branches represent the four provinces of Ireland: Ulster, Munster, Leinster and Connacht. Each provincial branch organises the sport within its geographic area. All four field senior teams that compete in the Pro12 (historically the Celtic League), and also field “A” teams in the semi-professional British and Irish Cup. The fifth branch is the Exiles Branch, tasked with identifying and developing players living in England, Scotland and Wales who are qualified to represent Ireland through their ancestry.

HISTORY

Initially, there were two unions both founded in 1874 – the Irish Football Union had jurisdiction over clubs in Leinster, Munster and parts of Ulster; the Northern Football Union of Ireland controlled the Belfast area. The IRFU was formed in 1879 as an amalgamation of these two organisations and branches of the new IRFU were formed in Leinster, Munster and Ulster. The Connacht Branch was formed in 1886.

The IRFU was a founding member of the International Rugby Board (today World Rugby) in 1886 with Scotland and Wales. (England refused to join until 1890).