Shrigley cheers for Aussie ace Brendan

Shrigley cheers for Aussie ace Brendan

5 December 2012

THE next big star name in Australian rugby has the residents of one local village checking the record books.

Brendan McKibbin was called into the Australian team for their match against Wales at the weekend.

The people of Shrigley are glowing with pride as Brendan’s relatives are from the County Down village.

The Wallabies star is the grandson of Jose McKibbin, a member of the Watters family from Shrigley.

But Irish rugby manager Declan Kidney can’t be blamed for missing out. Brendan’s grandmother left the village to settle in Kilmarnock, and Brendan and his family left Scotland for Brisbane when he was seven.

Brendan quickly got involved in rugby ‘Down Under’. Over the past few years he has played with Queensland Reds and about four years ago he played a match against Ulster at Ravenhill for a Queensland Reds touring team. Two years ago he signed for New South Wales Waratahs in Sydney.

Fr. Brian Watters, a member of the Watters family clan from Shrigley and a priest in Carryduff, travelled to Cardiff for Saturday’s game against Wales, which the Wallabies won 14-12 thanks to a dramatic late try.

Fr. Watters said: “My uncle, Brian Watters, and I have been following Brendan’s career for a few years. Along with other family members we follow the Super Rugby on Sky TV and watch all the Waratahs games. Brendan played in a good number of their games last year.

“Although Brendan only made the bench for this game against Wales, all the experts are agreed it is only a matter of time before he makes it big. We are very proud of him and I am sure people in Shrigley are delighted for him.’’