Bob Casey Testimonial Year, 2011 - 2012

Welcome from the committee

I would like to extend a warm welcome to the Bob Casey Testimonial Year. During the course of the 2011/2012 season, we plan to celebrate Big Bob's extensive rugby career and contribution to the community through a series of exciting and unique events - events which I hope you will support to thank Bob in person for his contribution to the game that we love.

Beginning his professional career at Leinster, he was launched into the spotlight in 1999 following a call up to the Ireland Squad at just 20 years of age where he toured Australia and earned his senior debut. Following on from this Bob was subsequently a member World Cup Squad in 1999 earning two further caps for his country. Following a successful stint with Leinster which included a Magners League Title, Bob then signed with the Exiles back in July 2002 and hasn't looked back since.

In his nine seasons at London Irish and with over 225 appearances under his belt, Bob has become a London Irish legend and enjoyed huge success with the club. He was voted the Player's Player of the 2003/2004 Season and went on to captain the club he has come to love for over three seasons where he lead the Exiles to a Heineken Cup semi-final with Toulouse in 2008 and a Guinness Premiership Final in 2009.

This undeniable form and reputation for being one of the best lineout operators in the Premiership saw Bob recalled to the Ireland Squad where he captained the Ireland 'A' team in the 2008 Churchill Cup and again in 2009. He was named in Declan Kidney's Autumn internationals squad for 2008, the squad for the 2009 Six Nations and that summer toured North America and Canada in 2009 with Ireland and earned a further two caps bringing his tally to seven in total.

Bob's knowledge and insight into the game has been recognized by the Irish Times where he currently writes a weekly column which has developed a substantial following since it began.

Outside of his rugby he is the original gentle giant, with a wonderful caring nature, exemplified by his Directorship of the Christina Noble Children's Foundation UK Board, just one of the charities that we will be supporting during the year.

Our objective for the coming year is to celebrate Bob's career with a series of exciting and memorable events, which will also raise money for his benefit and also for our chosen charities; Goal, Christina Noble Childrens foundation and Cooperation Ireland.

So once again I welcome you and hope to see you at some point during the forthcoming year.

Mick Crossan

Testimonial Committee Chairman