Keith Wood, Fergus Slattery and Tom Kiernan are among the 37 players to be inducted into the IRB Hall of Fame in the next year. The news comes alongside the announcement that the International Rugby Hall of Fame and IRB Hall of Fame are to merge.
Wood has already been honoured by the body during his career, winning the inaugural IRB World Player of the Year award back in 2001. During the early part of his career, he was famous for never finishing a match. He also had the misfortune to walk into an Irish team that were incapable of winning a match. Indeed, despite having made his test debut on the tour of Australia in 1994, he had to wait until 1999 to win his first Five Nations match with a victory over Wales in Wembley. However, he hung around long enough to see the beginnings of the O'Driscoll era, that giddy period when Ireland got used to winning rugby matches.
Slattery was a star flanker for both Ireland and Lions during the 70s and 80s. He was a part of the famous invincibles team that toured South Africa in 1974. He also won the triple crown with Ireland in 1982 and was part of the Irish team that won the 1974 Five Nations championship (a largely forgotten success. Read about here).
Tom Kiernan was Ireland's celebrated, goal-kicking full back during the 1960s and early 70s. He coached the Munster side that downed the All-Blacks in 1978.
The trio join Willie John McBride, Jack Kyle and Tony O'Reilly in the Hall of Fame.