Hanley is new Buccs captain

Adrian Hanley has been appointed Club Captain at Buccaneers RFC for the coming season which kicks off on September 1st.             Athlonian Hanley, who has been honoured by Ireland at Youths and Colleges levels, has come up through the club’s ranks and is a firm crowd favourite at Dubarry Park through his willingness to carry ball and his ‘go forward’ style. A committed back row forward, adept at No. 8 but perhaps best at wing forward, he has won Connacht Senior League and Cup honours as well as enjoying some success with Athlone Institute of Technology. He is also a noted gaelic footballer with Garrycastle. Adrian is wished every success and, hopefully, he will promptly lead Buccaneers back to Division One.   Fixtures announced Fixtures lists for the forthcoming AIB League campaign have been announced. With Buccaneers competing in Division 2 this season, the midlanders will have first ever matches against a number of clubs whilst supporters will need to plan fresh routes this season for some games! Buccs have seven home fixtures but eight away in a league that, due to the impending World Cup, kicks off later than usual on October 27th.             Buccaneers should have a sizeable crowd on opening day when Clonakilty make a first ever visit to Dubarry Park. The west Cork club is on the up and this should prove an entertaining and compelling opener. Buccs then face three away games on the trot to promoted Ballynahinch, Old Crescent and UC Cork before hosting the other newcomers Bective Rangers on December 1st. Matches away to Young Munster and home to relegated Belfast Harlequins takes the schedule up to the Christmas break.             The Connacht Senior League fixtures have also been issued with Buccaneers away to Galwegians on the opening day, September 1st. Buccs are, surprisingly, away again the following weekend when they play Corinthians while Connemara visit Athlone on Sept. 15th. Interestingly, Connacht Junior League fixtures between these four ‘senior’ AIB League clubs are scheduled for the same dates, which is a new and perhaps optimistic feature.             Buccaneers play their first match of the season on next Monday evening, August 20th, when they tackle a Connacht U-20 side at Dubarry Park in a game that kicks off at 7 p.m. when home fans will get a chance to run their critical eyes on some of the club’s new recruits as well as evaluating the potential of some of our upcoming players. Among these should be Alan Gaughan, who was named ‘Westmeath Independent Sports Star’ for April. Congratulations to Alan on this award.   Connacht take on South Africa Meanwhile, Connacht will play in front of a ‘full house’ at Galway Sportsground on Tuesday next when South Africa play a warm-up match against the western province in their build up to the World Cup finals in France.   Buccs barbecue Buccaneers Reserves are hosting a barbecue at The Bounty on Saturday week, August 25th. A live band followed by a DJ will provide the musical entertainment, plus top class food as well as late bar. Tickets are now on sale at The Bounty or contact Paul Dooley at (086) 3031336 for full details. This promises to be an enjoyable event as well as a very creditable initiative by a group of players, so here’s hoping for decent support (and better weather!).