2019 marks the end of 30 years of service to South Australian schools’ rugby by Mr Tony Begley. To recognise Tony’s exceptional work during this period, the Under 18 schoolboys championship trophy has been named The Begley Cup.
Tony Begley commenced his association with the South Australian Schools’ Rugby Union in 1987 as coach of Daws Road High School. Since this point, Tony has provided 30 years of continuous service to SASRU, both as a successful coach and administrator. In 1989 Tony coached the South Australian Schoolboys side in the National Championships in NSW alongside fellow long-time contributor to SA schools’ rugby, Mr Brian Callaghan. In the same year, Tony commenced teaching and coaching the First XV at Sacred Heart College, a position he maintained for the next decade. In 1999 Tony moved to St Peters College and after two seasons at Under 16 level began coaching the First XV, leading this side almost continuously for 20 years.
Tony tirelessly promoted rugby to students and oversaw many highly successful St Peters sides, in turn improving the competition for all member schools. Tony has also been an important administrator of the game, serving on the SA Schools’ Rugby Union Committee in a variety of roles since 1989. Most notably, Tony served as President from 2011 to 2015. During this time, Tony and the SASRU committee oversaw the implementation of an Under 14 age group, which has continued to grow since this point, strengthening the competition and opening up the world of rugby to many new students. Tony has also been a long serving administrator at Adelaide University RUFC. At all times Tony has acted with the best interest of students at heart, seeing rugby as an opportunity for young people to develop the virtues of sportsmanship, determination and humility. Virtues Tony himself demonstrated at all times throughout his 30 years of service.
It is therefore fitting that from 2020 onwards the grand final winner in SASRUs premier competition, the Under 18 Schoolboys, will be presented the Begley Cup.