A young Donegal rugby player is making his international debut in the colours of the USA in faraway Argentina today (Thursday)
Justin Allen (18) from Glenoughty Close, Letterkenny, is a member of the USA Rugby Boys High School All-American team that are on a 15 day tour of Argentina.
The tour includes four gamesm, two against top regional academy Cordoba and two test games against the Puma national U-19 boys.
Justin is 6’10’’ and weighs 19 stone. He was born and lived in Wexford until he was 14, before moving to Donegal, first to Milford and more recently Letterkenny.
He qualifies to play for the USA through his mother Kathleen, who is a native of Nebraska. He currently plays his club rugby with Portadown U-19s having joined the Armagh club from Letterkenny Rugby Club following his selection on the Ulster Rugby U-19 Development squad.
Justin, a second row, is a pupil at Loreto Convent in Milford where he will sit his Leaving Certificate next year.
Justin flew out to Miamai in Florida at the end of last week to join the 30 man squad before jetting on to Argentina.
“He is very excited about the tour and he is looking forward playing for the USA and we all see it as a great opportunity for him,” his mother Kathleen told the Democrat.
The first game of the tour is today (Thursday), Justin’s 18th birthday, against the Cordoba Academy, with the second game also against the Academy side, on Sunday afternoon.
He came to the attention of the USA coaching staff playing with Portadown U-19s.
The first of the two tests games is on Wednesday while Justin and his team mates will wrap up their tour with the second test on Saturday.
Justin is an all rounder and also a keen Gaelic footballer. He is a member of the Letterkenny Gaels club and is full-forward on the club’s minor team.