Gavin Duffy has been selected as the captain of Connacht Rugby for the upcoming season.
The 30 year old Ballina native will lead the province out for his second season as captain.
Duffy earned the first of his 10 Irish caps against South Africa in 2004 and played against Argentina in the 2007 World Cup. A former Mayo minor footballer, he played in the 1999 All Ireland Minor football final against Down. The 6'2, 91kg full-back has been ever present in the Connacht squad since his return to the province in 2007 following a 4 year stint with Harlequins.
Having played for Ireland at Schools, U21, 7's and 'A', Gavin is one of a select few to earn 100 caps for Connacht and was part of Connacht's 2010 Amlin Challenge Cup semi-final team that narrowly lost to Toulon in the Sportsground.
The full-back was also one of four Connacht players to be called up to the Ireland squad during the summer tour to New Zealand.
Duffy is delighted with the appointment. "It's a great honour to be picked as captain for a second season. There is massive pride in playing for your province and leading your team out only adds to that. I really enjoyed last year and learnt a lot as captain. There are several leaders emerging from the group and we have a fantastic squad in place. We can't wait to build on some of the successes of last season."
Following on from the provinces first ever Heineken Cup and highest ever league finish in the RaboDirect Pro12, Head Coach, Eric Elwood, was very pleased with Gavin's performance as captain. "Myself, the management team and the players feel that Gavin truly deserves the appointment again this season. He led the team with professionalism and passion and was crucial to the performance of the whole squad"
Connacht play Harlequins tomorrow at the Stoop (KO 2.45pm) in their second and final pre-season friendly.
They will then have a two week break before the first game of the RaboDirect PRO12 league. The Cardiff Blues will be the visitors to the Sportsground to get the 2012/13 season up and running.