Royal Navy Rugby Union: Senior XV v Irish Defence Forces

The Royal Navy Senior XV will be renewing its rivalry with the Irish Defence Forces (IDF) on Thursday 15thMarch at United Services Sports Ground, Burnaby Rd, Portsmouth. The kick-off is at 1900 and entry to the game is free.

This will be the eleventh meeting of the two sides, the first being in 2002 at London Welsh. The overall series stands at 7 - 3 to the Royal Navy, with the home side being the current holders of the trophy after a win in Cork last season. Results aside, this encounter has been notable for the closeness and competitiveness of the games. Every game played has gone to the wire; last year was no exception and could easily have been won by either team, with the margin of victory being just 7 points. The RN knows that this will be another hard fought and bruising encounter; the IDF will as ever provide a real test. The match this year will undoubtedly be hard, abrasive rugby, which will prove to be good preparation for the forthcoming Inter Services competition.

The RNRU is currently building its squad as a result of higher than normal changeover of players due to operational commitments, retirements and redundancies. However, the new management team is keen to quickly bring together a squad from across the full spectrum of the Navy life. The match against the IDF undoubtedly provides a good opportunity for aspiring players to make their mark and stake their claim to wear the coveted Navy shirt in this year's Inter Services.

Royal Navy Skipper, POAET (Dave) Pascoe commented ' I have played in all but the first of these encounters and they are always a hard fought game with little between the teams and we are determined to retain the trophy at home this year'. 

DoR, Lt Cdr (Andy) Kellett RN said of the fixture ' We are now half way through the Senior XV season in our preparations for the inter services and this is always a watershed game for the players and staff alike. As well as a trophy at stake, this fixture is always a committed and charged fixture with 'national pride' at stake and is perfect to see where we are in our preparations for the Inter Service Championship in April.


NA(AH) K Mason (HMNB Devonport), Lt D Smith RN (HMS Vanguard), AET K Beasley (RNAS Culdrose), NA(AH) J Quarnivalu (RNAS Culdrose), POAET M Cormack (RNAS Yeovilton), Mne B Fox (45 Cdo RM), MA S Laird (HMS Collingwood), ET(WE)  I Cooper (HMS Ambush), POAET D Pascoe (Capt)(RNAS Culdrose), Mne N Huntley (40 Cdo RM), S/Lt A Vance RN (RNAS Yeovilton), AB D Bamford    (HMS Dragon), Logs(CS)J Drananui  (WMO Devonport), AET J Humphrey (RNAS Yeovilton), Lt T Blackburn RN (RNAS Yeovilton), ET(ME) J Parry (HMS Monmouth),  Lt M Brett RM (42 Cdo RM), Mne T Vakalutukali (40 Cdo RM), Mne J Foster  (40 Cdo RM).

For further details contact the RNRU Office in HMS Temeraire on 02392 725238 or e-mail or RNRU Director of Comms Major (Steve) Melbourne RM on 9375 67991 or 07919292825 or e-mail

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