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Old Albanian RFC

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Old Albanian RFC

Old Albanians
Full name Old Albanian Rugby Football Club
Union Rugby Football Union
Nickname(s) OA's
Founded 1924;  (1924)
Location St Albans, England
Ground(s) Woollam Playing Fields, St Albans capacity/1,000
Chairman Rory Davis
President Robin Farrar
Coach(es) James Shanahan, Bruce Millar, Mark Langley
Captain(s) Laurence White
League(s) National League 1
2012–13 5th
Team kit
Official website
www.oarugby.com

Old Albanian Rugby Football Club (OAs) is a rugby club based in St Albans, Hertfordshire, England. The club won promotion from National League 2 North in 2011–12 to National League 1, and last season (2012–13) finished 5th, their highest ever place in the English rugby union system.

The club runs up to six senior teams each week and has one of the largest Mini and Junior sections in the country. There is a thriving social membership and members enjoy some of the finest facilities in the country. The club's mission is 'To promote the game of rugby at all levels of ability, across all age groups and for both sexes.'

Current standings

Formation

The club was formed in 1924 by a group of far-sighted Old Boys of St Albans School with a mutual love of the game. They acquired their first pavilion which was a timber World War I Barrack Hut. Organised rugby was thus established in St Albans, providing rugby union for all. They are the premier rugby club in St.Albans after being promoted to National league one the third highest league in England.

OA RFC's recent achievements

1987 - Selected, with two other Hertfordshire clubs, to form part of London League Division 2

1996 - Won London NW Division 3 gaining promotion to London League Division 2 North

1998 - Won the Herts. President's Cup

2001 - Won the County Sevens and were runners up in the Herts. President's Cup

2003 - Promotion to London League Division One

2005 - Reached their highest-ever league position (5th place in Powergen London One)

2009 - Won the Herts County 7s, runners up in the Herts County Cup Final. OA Colts reach both National Cup & Herts County Cup Finals and finish as Runners Up.

2010 - OAs gain promotion to National League 2 South from National League 3 South East with a playoff win vs Old Patesians R.F.C.. Old Albanian Saints gain promotion to RFUW Premiership.

2012 - OAs gain promotion to National League 1

Men's rugby

Running five men's sides each week the club has grown to become one of the biggest in the country, featuring a full schedule of league and friendly fixtures.

1st XV - National League 1 2nd XV - Canterbury Shield, Division 2
3rd XV - Greene King Super Premier Division
4th XV - Herts Middlesex Merit Tables, Division 3
5th XV - Herts Middlesex Merit Tables, Division 5

Mini and junior rugby

OAs has recruited over 850 mini and junior rugby players. The minis enjoy good success in the Hertfordshire leagues, whilst the juniors are well represented in the Saracens Herts and Middlesex Junior leagues. Most age groups are able to provide two squads to the leagues and provide very good competition.

Women's rugby

In 2005 the first women's XV ('The Saints'), unbeaten since November 2003, secured the South East One league title without losing a game. They won promotion to National League 2 in the subsequent play-off competition, securing victory over each of their regional rivals. In 2010 the OA Saints 1st XV gained promotion to the RFUW Premiership.

Facilities

After 78 years based at Beech Bottom, the club moved to their current playing fields following the development of Cheapside Farm into The Woollam Playing Fields, generally referred to as "Woollam's". The playing facilities opened in 2002 with a club-selected XV match against a star-studded international XV led by Peter Winterbottom which formed the centre-piece of the opening ceremony.

The state-of-the-art sporting complex on the northern outskirts of St Albans was acknowledged as the largest sporting development in Europe during its construction. It is regarded by many as the finest amateur sporting venue in the land. The Woollam Playing Fields is the choice of Saracens for their 'A' team's home fixtures and has hosted both England Under 16 and England RFUW International matches.

Representative honours

OAs have had players recognized at county level and national level.

Men's rugby
England: Jeff Probyn
Wales : Paul Turner
Ireland : Darragh O'Mahony
Barbarians: Steve Pope, Greg Botterman
Serbia: Danilo Bulatovic
Sweden: Charlie Openshaw, Andrew Daish
Hong Kong: Tamsin Reed
Italy: Nadia Brannon

External links

  • Official website
  • Old Albanian Rugby Football Club - mini and junior rugby website
  • OA Saints Homepage
  • Old Albanian Rugby Football Club at Google Maps.

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