Billy Holland rugby player
Billy Holland rugby player

Billy Holland

3rd Aug 1985 1.93m/111kg No 5 Lock

Son of former Munster team manager and Irish international Jerry Bill attended CBC in Cork and earned representative honours with Ireland Schools, Ireland under 19s and Ireland under 21s. A graduate of the Greencore Munster Rugby Academy, the Corkman’s pathway saw him play school and club rugby with CBC, UCC and Cork Constitution. He made his competitive debut for Munster in September 2007 against Scarlets and was promoted to a full contract in summer 2009.

He played on the Munster side narrowly defeated by New Zealand in 2008 and played a central role in the defeat of the touring Australians two years later.

Leading the Munster ‘A’ side to British and Irish Cup success in 2012, Billy has flourished in a leadership role with the senior side. A driving force on and off the field, hard work and consistent performances throughout his career have seen Billy win Munster Rugby Academy Player of the Year in 2008, Young Player of the Year in 2010, and be nominated for Player of the Year multiple times by his teammates.

Playing both lock and flanker, he has been a near ever-present in match-day squads over the past number of seasons and won the IRUPA Award for Unsung Hero in 2013. He played in Emerging Ireland’s 2014 Nations Cup-winning campaign in Romania and also won the 2015 Tblisi Cup with Emerging Ireland, captaining the side for the final game against the tournament hosts.

Billy marked his 100th appearance in red in 2015 and reached the 200-cap landmark just four years later. Holland was named in the 2016/17 Pro12 Dream Team and made his test debut in 2016, against Canada at the Aviva Stadium.

In reaching the 200-cap landmark away to Connacht in January 2019, Billy Holland became the first Munster player to play 200 games for the province since record appearance-holder Donncha O’Callaghan did so in April 2012 against Glasgow.

As of June 2020, Holland has lined out for Munster on 227 occasions and only three players have made more Munster appearances: Donncha O’Callaghan (268), Ronan O’Gara (240) and Peter Stringer (232).

He is now in his 14th season of professional rugby after first lining out in red against Scarlets in September 2007 and signed a one-year contract extension with the province in February 2020, a deal which will see him remain at the province until the end of 2020/21 season.

Credit: Munsterrugby.ie

Career

munster Munster Rugby
No 5 Lock
2007 - present
Christian Brothers College logo CBC Cork
No 5 Lock
ireland Ireland
No 5 Lock
2016 - 2017