Clontarf 3-30 Shannon
Shannon claimed their third All Ireland League title in a row and their eighth in total, with a 30-3 win over Clontarf at Lansdowne Road.
Shannon showed composure from the start, with tremendous performances upfront, where Shannon dominated throughout, coupled with plenty of depth in the back line. The half back partnership of Frankie McNamara and David Delaney exerted an iron clad control over the game proving a dynamic duo and hugely influential in Shannon s win.
A try from talented young Shannon hooker Sean Cronin after nine minutes opened the scoring, and was capped with a conversion and two penalties from Delaney in the first half, to give Shannon a ten point lead at the break, with Clontarf s only score came from the boot of Daragh O Shea.
Eight minutes into the second half, Clontarf had an opportunity to reduce the deficit, but O Shea s attempt at a penalty kick went astray. Shannon upped the ante with a 58th minute try from centre Eoin Cahill, converted by Delaney to stretch their lead.
Despite Clontarf experiencing something of a resurgence and coming back into the game with some solid and more cohesive play upfront led by young captain Johnny Wickham, Shannon weathered the challenge. With seven minutes to go Shannon claimed their third try, scored by Andrew Thompson after a searing break from David Delaney to stretch Shannon s lead to 25-3. To cap off the win in fine style, David O Donovan scored Shannon s fourth try in injury time, completing the three in a row.
While there were heroes for Shannon all over the pitch, it was a special day for Andrew Thompson, who claimed his 8th All Ireland League medal. Speaking after the game, Andrew Thompson s delight was evident This is our eighth title, but every one is different, everyone has its own journey we re a strong club with plenty of Munster character and it was a case of bringing it out today.
CLONTARF: D O'Shea; N O'Brien, M Hewitt, J Downey, D Keane; P O'Brien, F O'Loughlin; J Wickham (capt), N Carson, R Sweeney, A Trenier, A Wood, J Ellison, D O'Brien, P Purdue.
Replacements used: M R McDonald for Keane (47 mins), K Dorian for Sweeney, A O'Donnell for Wickham (both 60), M Woods for Purdue (74)
SHANNON: M Lawlor; P O'Connor, B Tuohy, E Cahill, A Thompson; D Delaney, F McNamara; L Hogan, S Cronin, G McNamara, T Hogan, P O'Brien, C McMahon (capt), J O'Connor, D Ryan.
Replacements used: A Quinlan for McMahon, S Keogh for O'Brien (both 53 mins), D O'Donovan for P O'Connor (74)