12 Dec, 17:21
Munster Rugby recently held a Clare Schools U16 blitz at Ennis in Lees Road, Co. Clare.
Johnny Holland put the visitors in front with a penalty in the second minute. And Barry Keeshan retaliated moments later with a penalty kick to level the sides, as Cork Constutution’s James Ryan was sent to the bin.
Dolphin extended their lead in the seventeenth minute when Chris Rowe crossed the try line in the left corner. Keeshan kicked the extras but missed a penalty minutes later when it bounced off the upright.
A Dolphin line-out following a great kick to the corner by Rory Scannell, set up Christy Condon who broke to send Miah Cronin over for the home sides second try of the night. Keeshan converted and Dolphin lead 17-3 at the break.
Following Dolphin’s dominance in the first half, Con got off to a promising start when Holland reduced the gap to 17-6, four minutes into the second half.
The visitors were enjoying a good spell of play until James Cronin turned over possession deep inside Dolphin territory. Danny Barnes broke, passing outside to Eamon Mills who made the yards, forcing Con to defend back in their own twenty-two. Substitute, Dave O’ Callaghan crossed the line and Dolphin lead 24-6 following a Keeshan conversion.
It wasn’t long before Con were back on the attack and were rewarded in the fifty-sixth minute when Brian Hayes touched down just right of the posts. Holland converted to close the gap to 24-13.
With full-time approaching, Con were relentless in their search for a further try and in the seventy-seventh minute they were awarded a scrum on the Dolphin five metre line. The ball was quickly spread out wide and Brian Cagney crossed the whitewash. A further conversion from Holland and Con trailed 24-20 heading into injury time.
Dolphin were held inside their own twenty-two as they were shown two yellow cards in as many minutes with Danny Barnes and Christy Condon both sin binned for seperate offences. With their defence outnumbered, they failed to keep John Ryan out as he drove over the line. The conversion courtesy of Holland sealed the narrow victory for the visitors over their rivals for the second time this season.
Dolphin: Eamon Mills, Danny Barnes, Rory Scannell, Cian Bohane, John Gleeson, Barry Keeshan, Brian Slater, James Cronin, Niall Scannell (Capt), Christy Condon, Chris Rowe, Darren O’ Shea, Rob O’ Herlihy, Miah Cronin, Ryan Murphy Replacements: Will Foley, Dave Hartnett, Dave O’ Callaghan, Chris Bannon, James Kiernan.
Cork Constiution: Darragh Lyons, Niall O’ Driscoll, Scott Deasy, Joe McSweeney, Cronan Healy, Johnny Holland, Gerry Hurley (Capt), John Ryan, Andrew O’ Driscoll, Chris Corkery, Philip Donnellan, Brian Hayes, James Ryan, Cathal O’ Flaherty Replacements: Andrew Cudmore, Brian Cagney, Graeme Lawler, Robert Clune.
Having conceded more than eighty points in their two previous outings, U.L. Bohemian gave themselves a boost with a surprise win over Young Munster at Clifford Park, in a very poor contest.
Seventeen points separated the clubs prior to kick-off and few gave U.L. Bohemian much of a chance as they fight desperately to hold on to their top grade status. They will be at home to St. Mary's and away to Cork Constitution in their last two games as they battle it out with local rivals Shannon at the bottom.
It was an afternoon of missed penalties by both sides but successful kicks by Ben Martin and JJ Hanrahan gave the visitors the badly needed win.
It might have been three points more but for a decision by referee Gary Conway who ruled that a penalty by Martin midway in the second half had gone wide off an upright after the touch judges had raised their flags to indicate that it had dropped inside the woodwork.
Martin had his penalty after thirteen minutes and Hanrahan was on the mark ten minutes from the end.
Alan Cotter was yellow-carded two minutes into the second half for use of the shoulder in a line-out and two minutes from time the U.L. Bohemian centre Niall Kennelly was binned for a high tackle.
Young Munster: Derry O' Connor, Craig O' Hanlon, Harry McNulty, Shane O'Leary, Darragh O' Neill, Mike Prendergast, Brian Haugh, Alan Cotter, Ger Slattery, Hugh McGrath (Capt), Sean Duggan, Tom Goggin, Colin Liston, Luke Russell, Mark Rowley Replacements: Darren Ryan, Ger Bourke, Ger Flaherty, Ian Cross, Mark Doyle.
U.L. Bohemian: Ben Martin, Finbarr Ryan, Mossy Lawler, Niall Kennelly, Rory Whyte, JJ Hanrahan, Tim Rafferty, Kevin Flanagan, Sean Henry, Gary Walsh, Daragh Frawley, Ed Kelly (Capt), Conor Kindregan, Ian Condell, Sean Rennison. Replacements: Tom Burke, John Sutton, Jack O' Donoughue, David Foley, Mark Abraham
Shannon had only their fifth win of the season but this was surely the most important as they moved a further step clear of the relegation zone after beating their great rivals at Thomond Park.
With Marcus Horan at prop Shannon got off to a great start with an early penalty by Rob Guerin settling the nerves and when Matt Jarvis missed a penalty chance for Garryowen the visitors suffered again after nineteen minutes. This time Shannon's forwards paved the way for a try by winger David O'Donovan and the conversion was charged down. It was all Shannon at this stage and Tadhg Bennett saw his drop goal attempt come back off a post.
But there was no stopping the rampant Shannon forwards and the pack drove over for a try by hooker Duncan Casey. Garryowen, Limerick's top club of the four in the division, struck back and scrumhalf Niall Cronin, brother of international hooker Sean, got a touchdown for a try that Jarvis converted.
It remained 13-7 at the interval but a penalty by Bennett increased Shannon's lead which they held until a few minutes from the end when persistent pressure was rewarded with a second Garryowen try, this time again touched down by Cronin and Jarvis hit the post with his conversion.
Shannon deserved to win and Garryowen deserved their bonus point.
Shannon: James Loxton, Mike Darcy, Eric Moloney, Richie Mullane, David O' Donovan, Tadhg Bennett, Rob Guerin, Marcus Horan, Duncan Casey, Kevin Griffin, Fergal Walsh, S McCarthy, Emmett O' Loughlin, M Cullinan, John Shine
Garryowen: Sean Scanlon, Cian O' Shea, Corey Hircock, Conan Doyle, Ronan O' Mahony, Matt Jarvis, Neil Cronin, Rory Brosnan, James Rael, JP Cooney, Aaron McCloskey, Mark Melbourne, Anthony Kavanagh, B O' Mahoney, David Sherry