Des Lamont, the recently elected President of the Leinster Branch, has been involved in rugby for most of his life…

He scored the winning try to give his school, Terenure College, victory by a point, 6-5, in the Junior Schools final, before losing a Senior Schools Final by the same margin against local rivals St Mary’s.

He represented Leinster Schools, Under-19 and Under-21 and played for a couple of Seasons with UCD, with whom he won a Metropolitan Cup – on the same team as the fathers of Brian O’Driscoll (Frank) and Tommy Bowe (Paul), before returning to Terenure.

Des captained his club in 1979-80 and won numerous Leinster competitions during a decade when Terenure were one of the dominant sides in Club rugby. He retired from playing in 1983 and took up refereeing and over the following decade he refereed Interprovincial and Five Nations Exchange games and a number of age grade internationals. During this period, unable by ARLB restrictions to coach rugby, he assisted in coaching and training Muckross Ladies hockey team to win a Leinster Cup and League and All Ireland triple.

His refereeing career was cut short by a ruptured Achilles tendon in 1994 and he returned to active service with Terenure. Over the following 10 years he was involved in coaching and management in Terenure, including stints alongside such coaches as Gerry Murphy, Bobby Byrne, Des Thornton and Kevin Putt. He also coached Terenure Junior teams to Leinster competition success, before becoming President of his Club in 2004.

He joined the Branch Executive in 2005 and became Junior Vice President the following year. In that Season he chaired the Junior Committee and was delighted to see Leinster regain the Junior Interprovincial Title. Last Season, he succeeded Paul McNaughton as Chairman of the Provincial Team Management Committee, following Paul’s appointment as Irish Team Manager.

Des is a very competitive and knowledgeable rugby man. He has rarely been a spectator, always a supporter. His extensive business travel has given him the opportunity to see the game in many countries over the past 20 years and his colleagues remark that it is uncanny how often his business meetings and conferences have coincided with major games and tournaments!

Commenting on the challenges for the year ahead, he said: “The biggest challenge facing Leinster rugby is to provide an appropriate framework for the first generation of Mini rugby players, to play adult rugby to the highest level possible. All over the Province, there are thousands of young players every Saturday and Sunday morning copying their heroes and we have got to make sure they have good facilities, coaching and, in time, good competitions.”