A promising player at school for Clongowes Wood College, the man from the Cooley Peninsula in Louth made his debut for Leinster in 2005 and has represented Ireland at schools, Under 19, A and senior levels.The Louth native, now aligned with University College Dublin, was a member of Eddie O'Sullivan's 2007 RBS 6 Nations squad but did not earn his first cap until the '07 summer tour to Argentina. He made his RBS 6 Nations debut against Italy in February 2008 and went on to win caps in each of the 5 games, turning in some eye catching performances. Kearney also played the two summer tests against New Zealand and Australia. The 08/09 season saw his star continue to rise. His coolness under the high ball, counter attacking pace and seige gun left boot saw him pick up a Grand Slam and a Heineken Cup winners medal as well as place in Ian McGeechan's 2009 Lions squad. Kearney has since established himself as one of Ireland's frontline players under the Declan Kidney regime. Kearney's career has progressed well in recent years, culminating in him being recognised as the European Rugby Player of the Year in 2012, the day after his club side Leinster retained their Heineken Cup title. Having been selcted for the Lions again in 2013, The Lions will be hoping he can bring his counter-attacking game alongside his skills in the air and vast experience to this tour.
Leinster and IRUPA Player's Player of the Year Award 2012