Andrew with his wife Natalie after his match
playing for the legendary Barbarians.
LOCAL man Andrew Kennedy will shortly be
hanging up his rugby boots, however he received one of the
highest honours in the sport last week when he was invited to
play for the exclusive Barbarians.
Andrew, who is the Tourism Development
Manager at Lisburn City Council, was selected to play in the
Annual Remembrance Day match on Wednesday November 14 in
Plymouth, England against the Combined Services.
The Barbarians, or Baa-Baas as they are often
referred to, were formed in 1890 to allow players who were
opponents to play with each other. Throughout their history some
of the world's best rugby players have represented the club, and
with membership by invitation only, it is deemed an honour to
wear their famous black and white jersey.
who is originally from Australia, a big rugby nation, was
delighted to be added to the elite list of Barbarians players.
"It is a big honour," said Andrew. "My
friends and family back home are pretty happy and proud and my
wife and her family came over to watch."
Andrew, who has lived locally for seven
years, has played for various local club's, including Lisburn,
and currently plys his trade with Banbridge RFC. However, he
will soon be ending his time with the first team.
"It was nice," he commented, "I'll finish
first team rugby at the end of this year so it was a nice
feather in my cap. It is a lovely way to go out."
Andrew continued, "I'm not totally sure how I
was selected, the only link I have is Dr. Donal O'Shaughnessy,
who is from Rathfriland. He is the doctor for the Barbarians and
is the former doctor for Ireland and I know him from Banbridge
Describing his time with the BaaBaas, Andrew
said, "On Tuesday we met for training and on Wednesday the Army
took us out abseiling. This is an annual event for Remembrance
Day and the Combined Services were promoting the game big time
so there were 5,000 there watching.
"I came on at half-time and played the second
half. We lost 27-24, we were up 24-20 into injury time when
their Fijan winger scored a try. We were represented by eight
nationalities, including ex-Argentinean outhalf Gonzalo
Having received his cap, Andrew was given a
lot of kit to keep, he concluded, "It was an amazing
Councillor Allan Ewart, Chairman of Economic
Development on Lisburn City Council said, "I was delighted to
learn that the Tourism Manager at Lisburn City Council Andrew
Kennedy was picked to play for the Barbarians in a rugby match
against the Combined Services last week.
"There are few people in Northern Ireland who
have had this great honour of playing with the Barbarians. I
would like to offer my congratulations to Andrew on this great
achievement and wish him well in the future."