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Rob Kearney

  • 19-09-2020 10:59pm
    #1
    Moderators, Category Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 49,408 CMod ✭✭✭✭ awec


    Deserves his own thread I reckon now that he’s officially retired.

    4 Six nations including 2 grand slams
    4 Heineken cups
    6 prowhatevers
    1 challenge cup

    Got a lot of stick in the last 4 or 5 years for his style of play (including from me) but he was a quality operator.

    It’s a bit mad how long he’s been around, and I find it hard to believe that he’s the most decorated player, but there you have it.

    It is becoming clearer that none of the current pretenders are in the same league in terms of reliability.


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Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,318 ✭✭✭ Dave_The_Sheep


    Has he officially retired though? Irish Rugby's tweet was ... ambiguous and nothing from the man himself that I've seen.


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 49,408 CMod ✭✭✭✭ awec


    Has he officially retired though? Irish Rugby's tweet was ... ambiguous and nothing from the man himself that I've seen.

    Sure the season is done.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,743 ✭✭✭ Heres Johnny


    Has he officially retired though? Irish Rugby's tweet was ... ambiguous and nothing from the man himself that I've seen.

    Their tweet said he's finished with leinster and Ireland. It's none of their concern or business if he is retiring or not. I can't see much by way of options for him apart from some lower ranked French top 14 sides looking to bring an experienced head in to complement a young back line or something.


  • Registered Users Posts: 23,564 ✭✭✭✭ Buer


    I went to a pre season friendly in Naas when Leinster played Parma in 2005. Two young players destroyed Parma, Heaslip and Rob Kearney.

    It's interesting to see how RK developed and evolved during his career. He was a sensational attacker in his earlier years culminating in a brilliant try for the Lions. But he developed a positional game that was unparalleled in the world.

    However, the game moved on too and a player needed more than just that. They needed to be the full package. His ability was so high that it outweighed the limitations. But eventually, time will tell. I think he pretty much ticked every box he realistically wanted to tick in rugby. No other can hold a candle to him in terms of achievements and silverware with the possibly exception of Sexton.

    He can walk away from Irish rugby with his head held high. He might not be first choice any longer but he's still a solid player and, aside from the NZ game, performed really well in the RWC last year. He was one of the most valued players in Europe for a sustained period with good reason.

    I'll always recall the drop against Clermont as the single moment that defined his ability but, as a performance, the home game against Wasps in 2009 was simply exceptional. They launched bomb after bomb and he defused them all as well as gathering his own kicks. It was a tactical tour de force.

    Fair play, Rob. For a bloke who wasn't even the best player in his family, he done good.


  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 14,138 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Zzippy


    awec wrote: »
    Deserves his own thread I reckon now that he’s officially retired.

    4 Six nations including 2 grand slams
    4 Heineken cups
    6 prowhatevers
    1 challenge cup

    Got a lot of stick in the last 4 or 5 years for his style of play (including from me) but he was a quality operator.

    It’s a bit mad how long he’s been around, and I find it hard to believe that he’s the most decorated player, but there you have it.

    It is becoming clearer that none of the current pretenders are in the same league in terms of reliability.



    You left out the two Lions tours. Oh, and playing for Louth in the Leinster minor championship ;)


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  • Registered Users Posts: 13,598 ✭✭✭✭ Beechwoodspark


    Has he officially retired?

    RK is Ireland’s most decorated player of the professional era I think


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,862 ✭✭✭ Abigail Bumpy Bumper


    RK is Ireland’s most decorated player of the professional era I think

    Surprising when he only managed 95 international caps.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 222 ✭✭ VANG1


    Only!!!


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,075 ✭✭✭ Heroditas


    Buer wrote: »
    I went to a pre season friendly in Naas when Leinster played Parma in 2005. Two young players destroyed Parma, Heaslip and Rob Kearney.

    It's interesting to see how RK developed and evolved during his career. He was a sensational attacker in his earlier years culminating in a brilliant try for the Lions. But he developed a positional game that was unparalleled in the world.

    However, the game moved on too and a player needed more than just that. They needed to be the full package. His ability was so high that it outweighed the limitations. But eventually, time will tell. I think he pretty much ticked every box he realistically wanted to tick in rugby. No other can hold a candle to him in terms of achievements and silverware with the possibly exception of Sexton.

    He can walk away from Irish rugby with his head held high. He might not be first choice any longer but he's still a solid player and, aside from the NZ game, performed really well in the RWC last year. He was one of the most valued players in Europe for a sustained period with good reason.

    I'll always recall the drop against Clermont as the single moment that defined his ability but, as a performance, the home game against Wasps in 2009 was simply exceptional. They launched bomb after bomb and he defused them all as well as gathering his own kicks. It was a tactical tour de force.

    Fair play, Rob. For a bloke who wasn't even the best player in his family, he done good.

    I was at that match too. Lovely sunny day iirc.
    Doesn't seem that long ago on some ways. Yikes, 15 years!!
    That performance against Wasps wasn't 2009 though, was it? We played them in the 2008/09 HEC but Dempsey was at FB for the home game when we routed them.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,194 ✭✭✭ Captain_Crash


    I live near him and see him about the place a good bit. Poor f**ker can’t cycle up the road for a coffee without being stopped multiple times by groups of blonds looking for a selfie! Some life eh haha! Sound bloke and will go down as one of the greatest FB’s to play the game


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  • Registered Users Posts: 4,191 ✭✭✭ swiwi_


    His best moments were the Lions tour to SA. He was really really good during that series.


  • Registered Users Posts: 23,564 ✭✭✭✭ Buer


    Heroditas wrote: »
    I was at that match too. Lovely sunny day iirc.
    Doesn't seem that long ago on some ways. Yikes, 15 years!!
    That performance against Wasps wasn't 2009 though, was it? We played them in the 2008/09 HEC but Dempsey was at FB for the home game when we routed them.

    Kearney was on the wing but it was that showing that demonstrated his aerial ability. He essentially played as an auxiliary full back and was responsible for the high balls in the back field.

    https://youtu.be/tx8rUE1AKLY


  • Registered Users Posts: 17,218 ✭✭✭✭ bilston


    He is still the best FB in Ireland.


  • Registered Users Posts: 23,564 ✭✭✭✭ Buer


    bilston wrote: »
    He is still the best FB in Ireland.

    Nah, Andrew Conway to full back is really a no brainer for me at this point. Larmour doesn't have the aerial aggression or the brains to be a full back. Stockdale still has some merit for me as a fullback. The question is whether his defence is good enough to be in the team at all at this point.


  • Registered Users Posts: 13,261 ✭✭✭✭ Clegg


    Don't think Conway will ever play at 15 for Ireland if he isn't getting regular time there for Munster.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,191 ✭✭✭ swiwi_


    Buer wrote: »
    Nah, Andrew Conway to full back is really a no brainer for me at this point. Larmour doesn't have the aerial aggression or the brains to be a full back. Stockdale still has some merit for me as a fullback. The question is whether his defence is good enough to be in the team at all at this point.

    In other news awec is delighted to announce the comeback of Jared Payne to take his rightful place at 15.


  • Registered Users Posts: 23,564 ✭✭✭✭ Buer


    Clegg wrote: »
    Don't think Conway will ever play at 15 for Ireland if he isn't getting regular time there for Munster.

    Not unheard of. Kearney was playing wing for Leinster when he won the 15 jersey for Ireland.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,743 ✭✭✭ Heres Johnny


    Kearney will be missed, great servant and even his willingness to turn down a move for big money to get another year at top level is to be commended. Great career.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 1,287 Niallof9


    I live near him and see him about the place a good bit. Poor f**ker can’t cycle up the road for a coffee without being stopped multiple times by groups of blonds looking for a selfie! Some life eh haha! Sound bloke and will go down as one of the greatest FB’s to play the game

    ah the last bit is a bit much...i know we like to hype our lads up but come on now.

    One of the greatest Irish FB's perhaps. One of the best fielding fullbacks perhaps. But one of the best fullbacks ever? nah, not a hope.

    Near the end he stifled the way we played the game. Its a shame whatever happened the running fullback we saw in his early 20's somewhat disappeared.


  • Registered Users Posts: 85 ✭✭✭ Guinness RFC


    Shane Howarth and Craig Joubert would be equal in fielding in the modern era. JPR Williams is the greatest ever fielding fullback Kearney was imperious but didn’t put his body on the line like JPR did. I’d have several All Black and French full backs ahead of him for attacking ability. All that said he is probably the greatest ever Irish fullback going back to 60’s and 50’s. My knowledge isn’t great before then.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,194 ✭✭✭ Captain_Crash


    Niallof9 wrote: »
    ah the last bit is a bit much...i know we like to hype our lads up but come on now.

    One of the greatest Irish FB's perhaps. One of the best fielding fullbacks perhaps. But one of the best fullbacks ever? nah, not a hope.

    Near the end he stifled the way we played the game. Its a shame whatever happened the running fullback we saw in his early 20's somewhat disappeared.


    The subjective nature of sport I suppose. I didn't say he was the best, just one of them... in 10 years time when the conversation is being had of the all time greats, he features. Were there better FB's? yes... but very few IMO.


  • Registered Users Posts: 211 ✭✭ Madeoface


    Top player and we all saw in the Saracens game how much his experience is missed at FB. I'd agree that Conway should take up the Ireland mantle, form player, very solid and exciting (which we can't say about RK in his final couple of seasons).

    Thanks Rob, especially for all the anger and sniping you roused on Munsterfans when Joe consistently picked you instead of the supposed special one with the rolled down socks.....show those haters all those medals.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,775 ✭✭✭ shootermacg


    Madeoface wrote: »
    Top player and we all saw in the Saracens game how much his experience is missed at FB. I'd agree that Conway should take up the Ireland mantle, form player, very solid and exciting (which we can't say about RK in his final couple of seasons).

    Thanks Rob, especially for all the anger and sniping you roused on Munsterfans when Joe consistently picked you instead of the supposed special one with the rolled down socks.....show those haters all those medals.

    Kearney is the best FB Ireland has ever produced. But no questioning Zebo's aerial ability.
    Here:


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 1,287 Niallof9


    The subjective nature of sport I suppose. I didn't say he was the best, just one of them... in 10 years time when the conversation is being had of the all time greats, he features. Were there better FB's? yes... but very few IMO.

    It depends on a few things. How far back you go and also accepting that rugby's limitations also feature. I mean there is 8-10 top tier nations. So look i accept by those parameters he features. But people like Matt Burke were still playing by 2008. So if we include Cullen, Burke, Robinson, Ben Smith, Folau and a few others he doesn't feature.

    From 2007ish to 2013 he was top quality. On his second Lions tour they didn't value him as highly as you would think. Thats the reality of it if we take off the green tinted spectacles.

    Best Irish fullback, but also not many alternatives were given a shot is the other side of the coin. HE was a brilliant fielder, uncanny positional sense, very fit, very good boot, a good leader, a good trainer, the ideal team mate by all concerned.

    He was crucial to some of our best ever performances so fair play to him.


  • Registered Users Posts: 23,564 ✭✭✭✭ Buer


    Kearney is the best FB Ireland has ever produced. But no questioning Zebo's aerial ability.

    We missed a trick by not making Zebo a full back earlier in his career. It was always odd. He was quick, had a massive boot and is a skillful player. He was nearly always on the wing for Munster until about 2016 when he featured much more at full back. I think he started 15 for Ireland a couple of times well before he appeared there for Munster.

    If we had focussed on him as a full back earlier in his career, I think it would have seen Kearney being moved on earlier and Zebo having the career that his talent suggested he would have.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 1,287 Niallof9


    Buer wrote: »
    We missed a trick by not making Zebo a full back earlier in his career. It was always odd. He was quick, had a massive boot and is a skillful player. He was nearly always on the wing for Munster until about 2016 when he featured much more at full back. I think he started 15 for Ireland a couple of times well before he appeared there for Munster.

    If we had focussed on him as a full back earlier in his career, I think it would have seen Kearney being moved on earlier and Zebo having the career that his talent suggested he would have.

    agreed. I find it distasteful how much hate he gets. I mean even on Munster threads people are kidding themselves that Haley and Gallagher are the better options. There's a fair few Irish legends who would have fell by the wayside if Schmidt's standards had been applied on them.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,634 ✭✭✭ ec18


    Kearney's going to remain Irelands most decorated player for a while, unless some of the young'uns from the last Grand Slam win another. Sexton's not going to get another GS based on current form.

    I admit I was one of the Zebo/Payne to 15 back a few years ago, at the time I thought Kearney was a one trick (catch run into contact, set up ruck)

    However after the last few weeks seeing the Leinster back three struggle under the high ball made me revise what I thought of him. It was undervalued how well he kept everything calm at the back under the ball.

    Who's the next Irish 15? Daly at Munster might have a shout atm he's arguable given the best showing at 15 under the high ball at the last few weeks. Larmour/Stockdale don't think either are up to it at international level. Stockdale for all his size seems a bit timid in attack and defence. Larmour has had a number of good and bad at FB mostly poor against better teams.

    Maybe Andy will pick Zebo and the all will be the right with the world. :-)

    But Kearney deserves all the praise he gets, great servant to Rugby and the best positional FB in the world at his peak? Probably.


  • Registered Users Posts: 12,522 ✭✭✭✭ thebaz


    Best Irish full back I ever saw - his performances against South Africa for the Lions were world class - was ther for everything great in Irish rugby - such a pity he was 2 caps short of 100.


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,794 ✭✭✭ Exclamation Marc


    From his farewell statement, its pretty clear that he's not retiring.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 3,046 ✭✭✭ arsebiscuits1


    His farewell statement was really lovely to read.

    He's done it all.

    Side note. But Garry Doyle of the42 is really staining a publication that I have a lot of time for.

    9 times out of 10 I can tell who has penned it before the end of the first paragraph. The latest example being his article on Robs farewell.

    He's just pasted Robs statement in and added snide comments between the inverted commas.

    Seems odd to have a journalist of the quality of Kinsella and even Sean Farrell is quite decent and have them having to share space with a tabloid **** stirrer like Doyle.

    Anyway. Was a really lovely morning to reminisce about the many many highs that Rob Kearney has brought us these last 15 years


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