Ireland and England legends to face off in St. Patrick’s Day game in Dublin

James While
Shane Byrne, Devin Toner and Sean O’Brien

Some of Ireland and England’s greatest legends will clash in a charity match on St. Patrick’s Day in aid of rugby charities both in Ireland and the UK.

Irish greats Gordon D’Arcy, Sean O’Brien and Devin Toner take on a star-studded English side including Matt Banahan, David Strettle and Delon Armitage.

The annual event alternates location between England and Ireland and this year it is set to take place in Energia Park in Dublin at 5:30pm on St. Patrick’s Day, which falls on the eve of Ireland against England in the final round of the Six Nations.

Fixture returns to Ireland

This will be the first time the game returns to Ireland since the pandemic, after being played at the Twickenham Stoop last year.

The fixture is the brainchild of Len Dineen and Ireland captain for the fixture Shane Byrne.

Commenting on this year’s event, Byrne said: “This game began in 2009 after the untimely passing of Stuart Mangan who played for Hammersmith & Fulham RFC in London.

“Thanks to the continued support of rugby fans as well as our incredible sponsor, Ark Underwriting Bermuda, we have raised over €1.5M which goes towards rugby charities both in Ireland and the UK.

“Of course, the main reason we get together is to remind ourselves of the times, the tries and the tackles. It’s amazing how much longer those old two metre tries get as the night goes on and how much better our careers were now than they seemed at the time and I cannot wait to meet up with old foes, friends and fans,” quipped Byrne.

England legend Jason Leonard commented: “The Legends match is always a terrific family event with the emphasis on raising as much money for the charities as possible. We’re looking forward to a great Paddy’s Weekend in Dublin and hope to put on a fantastic evening of entertainment for all the supporters that come out.”

The Irish Rugby Charities supported by the game are, Rugby Players Ireland Foundation & IRFU Charitable Trust. The UK Charities are Rugby Players Association and RESTART.

Tickets are available to purchase at €11.40 for OAPs and U16s or €22.30 for anybody over the age of 16. You can get your tickets at

Squads announced

Ireland Legends

Shane Byrne, Gordon D’arcy, Sean O’Brien, Devin Toner, Andrew Trimble, Tommy O’Donnell, Isaac Boss, Ian Keatley, James Downey, Gavin Duffy, Michael Swift, Denis Hurley, Ronan O’Mahony, Denis Fogarty, Stephen Keogh, Des Dillon, Alex Dunlop, Fionn Carr, Billy Holland, Chris Henry

England Legends

Jon Phillips, Ben Woods, David Strettle, David Rees, Delon Armitage, Howard Graham, Jonny Barrett, Kevin Yates, Lee Dickson, Paul Doran-Jones, Robbie Morris, Darren Fox, Stuart Turner, Tom Varndell, Matt Banahan, Matt Mullen, Dean Schofield, Rob Cook, Julian Salvi, Matt Jess, James Bucknall, Kai Horstmann, Ollie Smith

READ MORE: Six Nations: Can you name the last Ireland team to complete the Grand Slam in 2018?