AIL LUNCH 5 DECEMBER 2015 – D.U.F.C. v Shannon


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He was educated at Roscrea College and on coming to Trinity he played for D.U.F.C. and was awarded 5 Colours and captained the club for 2 consecutive years and to a Leinster Senior Cup win. He won 6 of his seven caps playing for D.U.F.C.

Having graduated as a solicitor he joined Lansdowne where he won his final cap against Wales in 1981. He was “6’5 ½” and as a former Gaelic footballer, had excellent ball skills and was an outstanding lineout exponent. He featured both at lock and no.8 for Ireland and partnered fellow Kerry man Moss Keane at lock forward on 4 occasions.

He won 16 caps with Munster and was part of the team that had a famous victory over the All Blacks at Thomond Park in 1978. In 1982 he took a sabbatical in the south of France where he played with Bagniers. Rugby was very hard there – he described his rugby there as a learning curve in survival. In going to France he probably lost the opportunity to gain more Irish caps and indeed was never dropped off an Irish team.

He rejoined Lansdowne on his return where he made a huge contribution, picking up 3 Leinster Senior Cup medals and 4 Leinster Senior League medals in the process, in what was a golden era for the club which he captained in 1984. He had an extraordinary record as captain in that he also captained the Leinster Schools and Leinster Under 19’s.

On his retirement from senior rugby he picked up a couple of Metropolitan cup medals and coached the Lansdowne1st XV, the Leinster Under 19’s for 3 years and the senior Leinster team. His brother Dick Spring also captained D.U.F.C. and Lansdowne and also played for Ireland.

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