Scrumhalf Matthew Devine signs first professional contract with Connacht

Devine will become a senior squad player after completing his second season win Connacht’s academy in the summer

The talented Connacht scrumhalf Matthew Devine has signed his first professional contract with the province and will become a senior squad player after completing his second season win their academy in the summer.

A product of the Connacht pathway system, Devine came through the ranks at Ballinasloe RFC and Garbally College, where he won two Connacht Senior Schools Cups in 2019 and 2020. He becomes the latest Garbally alumni to join the professional ranks with Tiernan O’Halloran, Colm Reilly, Oisín McCormack and Shane Jennings.

Devine also played a major role in Ireland winning a Grand Slam in the 2022 Under-20 Six Nations, playing in all five games and scoring in each of the four matches which he started.

Devine has also been part of Corinthians’ promotion drive this season from Division 2B of the Energia All-Ireland League. They host Wanderers in a promotion/relegation play-off semi-final next Saturday week.


The 22-year-old made his senior Connacht debut away to Lyon in the Champions Cup in January, and was also named in the matchday 23 last week in the Challenge Cup Round of 16 win over Pau.

“This is a proud day for Matthew and one that’s richly deserved,” said Connacht head coach Pete Wilkins. “He’s an extremely talented scrumhalf who is a great fit for the style of rugby we play here in Connacht, and I know he’ll only continue to get better over the coming seasons. Credit must go not just to him, but his coaches and wider network in the Connacht Academy, Garbally College and Ballinasloe who helped develop him on his rugby journey.”

Gerry Thornley

Gerry Thornley

Gerry Thornley is Rugby Correspondent of The Irish Times