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27/10/2021

Former Italian international joins Rainey Old Boys as coach

Dublin born Ian McKinley is Rainey's new backs' coach

Former Italy international joins Rainey Old Boys as coach

Former Italy international Ian McKinley has joined Rainey Old Boys as their backs' coach

Former Italy international Ian McKinley has joined Rainey Old Boys as their backs' coach ahead of the new season.

The signing was announced on Wednesday night by Director of Rugby, Brian Smyth and Head Coach, John Andrew.

McKinley played for Leinster but was forced to retire from rugby after losing the sight in one eye. 

He moved into coaching following a move to Italy.He made a return to the playing field, using specially manufactured goggles for Italian clubs Viadana, Benetton and Zebre.

Since McKinley never played a game for Ireland, his three years in Italy made him eligible to play for Italy.

Rainey, who play in All-Ireland league Division 2A, are back in training and have friendlies at home to both Belfast Harlequins and Malone next month.

They will begin their defence of the Ulster League Section 1 title against three-in-a-row Senior Cup winners Armagh, who are back in the top division at the expense of Ballymena. This competition will finish before Christmas.

The All-Ireland league doesn't begin until January, with a home game against Cashel.

Brad Roberts, last year's Division 2A Player of the Year was due to test himself at a higher level in Wales, but nothing has been confirmed.

Scrum-half Jason Bloomfield, a great asset who led the side on many occasions last season, is taking a break from the game to deal with other commitments.

Young prop Jack McIntosh has moved to City of Derry in search of more first team experienceRainey welcomes back Scott McLean, Mark O'Connor, Darren Corrigan and Sammy Sufferin, as well as having former Ulster player Tommy O'Hagan available again.

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