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Ulster sign promising youngster from AIL

City of Armagh fullback Shea O’Brien his inked a professional deal.

Shea O’Brien in action for City of Armagh.
Shea O’Brien in action for City of Armagh.
Image: Bryan Keane/INPHO

ULSTER HAVE ANNOUNCED that Newry-born Shea O’Brien has signed a one-year development contract.

The 22-year-old fullback O’Brien showed his talent when winning the Bank of Ireland Senior Cup with City of Armagh in March 2020. He was named the 2019/20 Ken Goodall Club Player of the Year in the Ulster Rugby Domestic Rugby Awards.

O’Brien is also a talented GAA player and is studying medicine at Queens University Belfast.

His fresh deal follows on from his starting role in Ulster’s development Inter-Pro fixtures against Leinster and Munster last season, as well as putting in a try-scoring performance against Connacht Eagles.

He’ll join up with the Ulstermen this summer and head coach Dan McFarland said: “Shea exemplifies a player who has taken a less traditional route to being involved in the professional set-up at Ulster.

“He impressed in our Development side last September, and I am excited for what he will bring to our squad next season as a result of being nurtured through club rugby in the province.”

O’Brien added: “I am delighted to have signed a Development contract with Ulster Rugby. The squad and coaching staff have already made me feel very welcome.

“The group are ambitious and I’m very excited and privileged to be a part of it. I hope to use this opportunity to learn more and develop myself as a rugby player. 

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“I’d like to extend a sincere thanks to everyone at City of Armagh Rugby club for the continued support they have given me in my journey from the Mini setup, through the youth system, and into Senior rugby. I have worked with some great coaches and players along the way, and I will be forever grateful for this.”

Comedian Michael Fry is our special guest on this week’s episode of The Front Row, in partnership with Guinness. Joining host Seán Burke, Eimear Considine and Murray Kinsella, he chats about his family’s rugby background and his short-lived playing days, before using his musical ear to rank the anthems of each Guinness Six Nations team. Click here to subscribe or listen below:


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