Learn more about Andrew Porter – an Irish front-rower being tipped for big things


Date of birth 16 January 1996 Country Ireland

Tell us about your rugby background…

My dad, Ernest, introduced me to rugby at five. He played for Old Wesley and was my coach there. I stayed with Old Wesley until I started secondary school at St Andrew’s College. It’s not much of a rugby school but our team did quite well.

Did you play other sports?

Yes, but I had my heart set on rugby from the get-go.

When did you link up with Leinster?

Not until the U20s. I started at UCD and joined the Leinster sub-academy and then went up to the full academy.

When did you first play for Ireland?

I played Ireland U18 Schools, then two years at U20.

Do you have good memories of last year’s U20 World Championship?

Definitely. We were the first Irish team to get to the final and, without taking away from the seniors, the first male Ireland team to beat New Zealand!

You made the tournament’s Dream Team at the end…

It’s great to be recognised on a world stage.

Who was a big influence?

My dad and my strength and conditioning coach at St Andrew’s, David Jones.

What are your aims this season?

It was to get my first cap for Leinster in the Pro12 and that was a surprise when I got it early. The big thing is to keep pushing for starts, to get more experience. The Six Nations (when others are away) is hopefully a good opportunity to show my ability.

RW Verdict: Porter is out of the U20 age grade now and is making his mark with Leinster. An economics student at UCD, he has brains as well as brawn and will go far.

This article first appeared in the April 2017 issue of Rugby World. For the latest subscription offers, click here.