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Club News Week Ending December 3rd 2006

28th November 2006 By Munster Rugby

Club News Week Ending December 3rd 2006

News, views and reviews from Clubs around the province

Christopher Barry PRO

The senior AIL resumes on Saturday with the visit of Belfast Harlequins to Dooradoyle where the match kicks off at 2.30.  Despite their lowly position in the table our supporters should need no reminding of the number of times we have come unstuck against the Northerners.  There are injury doubts about a few of our players but Paul Cunningham is hopeful we will field close to full-strength.  Please note John Noonan is again running the pre-match lunch at 12.30 and John can be contacted on 087-9308318 to reserve a table or place.  Last weekend we had a useful friendly outing in Cork where we beat Highfield fairly comfortably 20-6.  Frank McKenna and Mark Melbourne were the try scorers and Conor Kilroy accounted for the rest of the points with the boot.  Tremendous heart and no little skill got our U20’s back in the groove when they defeated Corinthians 22-8 in Galway last Saturday.  Dave Sherry showed some fine skills and our pack held the whip hand all through.  Willie Staunton orchestrated things at out half and made space for the speedsters out wide.  Captain Tadgh Nihill, Eoin Breen and the aforementioned players all crossed for tries and Willie Staunton also added a conversion.  The bonus point ensured there were happy campers on the bus home to Limerick.  Our junior team gave a disappointing display when losing 9-6 to UL Bohs in the MSL at a wet and cold Annacotty last Sunday.  Alan Kinglsey and Willie Staunton were our only scorers.  A big improvement in our performance will be necessary if we are to seriously trouble the always formidable Cork Con side on their home patch next Sunday at 2.30.  The 3rdXV came from behind to beat Richmond 15-7 in the Gleeson League at Garryowen Green last Saturday.  This was one that nearly got away.  We went 7-0 down half way through the first but Fergus Sheahan reduced the deficit with a penalty just before the short whistle.  The second half was very evenly contested until the 70th minute when James Fanning got his hands to a deft little kick from our scrum half to score in the corner.  Minutes later Mike Kennedy touched down and again Fergus Sheahan added the extra points.  The team have a home friendly v Shannon on Saturday at 1.30.  The under 14s travelled to Dublin on Sunday and had a great win over Wanderers 38- 5.  Having suffered from the long coach journey up from Limerick, the team conceded an early try and was on the back foot early on in the game.  However once the forwards got on top in the rocks and mauls, the backs opened up to score 6 tries.  Ian Mooney (2), John McDonnell, Ben Drew, Rory Collins and Paul McNamara all scored five pointers.  Rory had a great kicking game in difficult underfoot conditions and managed to convert four tries including one from the touchline.  Sam O’ Rourke led the posse up front with some great pick and drives.  Geoffrey Ronan and Jamie Flood also featured well.  It was a great all round display by an ever improving squad of players.  The squad then went on to attend the Ireland v Pacific Islanders match.  We would like to remind members that the annual Mass for the Deceased Members of Garryowen FC will be held in the clubhouse on Friday 1st Dec at 7.00 p.m.

Andrew McNamara PRO

Another busy weekend just passed with all our adult sides in action.  A depleted senior side headed to Athlone to play Buccaneers in a friendly and it was the home side that appeared to have more of an appetite for the encounter.  It was hard game which is exactly what Gallimh and Co. were looking for and although on the losing end, it was well worth the trip for the lads.  The result was disappointing but with two week break from competitive action was it important to get a game.  There’s’ no game for the seniors until next week when we resume AIB league in Terenure.
Also on Saturday, the U/20’s encountered a difficult Bruff side in the South Western conference of the AIL and after a less than auspicious performance they eventually ran out 25-14 winners.  Few would argue that they played well below their capabilities in the main, however when the need arose they produced the quality of rugby we have come to expect from this talented side, even if it was in sporadic bursts.  Despite the general performance of the team., there was a couple of notable individual displays, none more so than wing forward Darren Horan who was outstanding throughout.  On the occasions that Bruff were pounding our line, more often than not it was Darren’s efforts that relieved the pressure.  An early penalty from Richie Mullane opened our account, but a converted Bruff try gave them the lead heading towards the break.  Riche however, reduced the lead with another penalty before the whistle.  The words from Colm and Ger at half time seemed to instil a greater urgency as the second half began and Martin Staunton powered his way over after some enterprising play.  It was a lead the lads wouldn’t relinquish and when Johnny Paradise finished off a superb move, turning defence into attack, it seemed as if they would coast comfortably  but as is their style Bruff never gave in and they scored a try to close the gap to just three points.  It took another concerted effort to score our third and put the result beyond doubt.  A win is a win and it keeps the 20’s on top of the conference.  This Saturday in Derryknockane they face possibly their biggest test thus far when they play fellow table toppers Young Munster.  They have already played them in the North Munster league, and won, but that result will have little bearing on Saturday.  Kick-off is at 2.30.
On Sunday the Seconds were forced to play in gale force winds as they hosted Cork Con in the Munster seconds league.  With the advantage of the elements in the opening half all we could manage was a penalty from Andrew Thompson.  The gusting wind appeared to grow stronger in the second half and we were forced to play a much tighter game.  A single kick from Con could bring play from one end of the field to the other and it took a big effort to hold them at bay on a few occasions.  It’s a credit to the players that they managed to hold the visitors to a penalty and despite having a couple of late efforts to snatch the win, Con left for Cork with a share of the spoils and probably a share of disappointment.  Back Row players Garrett Noonan and Gavin Murphy were instigators in the resolute defending whilst Barry Molloy on the wing looked dangerous when in possession.  The seconds are picking up momentum as the league progresses, but with a stop start nature to the campaign it’s difficult to maintain.  As with the seniors they have no game this weekend.
The thirds played their last match of the Gleeson league in Coonagh on Saturday against UL/Bohs, but unfortunately a fairly serious injury 15 minutes from the end to a UL/Bohs player meant that the match had to abandon.  Precedent for such circumstances means that the game will have to be replayed at a later date.  Prior to the injury we were coasting and leading 22 points to 3.  Peter O’ Dea, Diarmuid Fitzgerald and Brian O’Donovan all crossed the try line, but alas it was all in vain.  However this talented thirds side maintained their fantastic momentum and although they were already unassailable in the league their focus remained on winning the section in style.  The date for the re fixed game has yet to be decided, but they certainly won’t be waiting around and this Saturday play Garryowen in a friendly.  The start time in Coonagh is at 1.30pm.  News from the injured player, Mike Laffan, is that he sustained a broken leg and on behalf of the Shannon thirds we wish him a speedy recovery.
At underage the U/13’s had a comprehensive win over Young Munster in Coonagh with the final score at 35-14.  The result of the game was beyond doubt at half time and afforded the management the opportunity to utilise their large panel.  The U/16’s recorded a similar result in Cork where they played Highfield.
This Sunday is relatively quite with the U/11’s away in a blitz and the U/13’s travelling to Ennis.


Denis Ryan PRO

The Gleeson League game with Shannon in Coonagh was abandoned with 20 mins to go following a serious leg injury sustained by Mike Laffan of UL Bohs.  We wish Mike a speedy recovery and look forward to seeing him in action again later this season.
In the Dudley Cup UL Bohs recorded an excellent 53-14 win over UCC, playing some very exciting rugby in difficult conditions.  A number of the U-20s squad featured in this game and they will have benefited from the step up in intensity.
Meanwhile, the U-20s travelled to Galway with a squad depleted by those players involved in Ireland U-20 and U-19 training sessions, in addition to the Dudley Cup commitments.  In a hard fought game, UL Bohs just came out on top by 13-10, despite a nerve-wracking second half which lasted 51 mins and a 20-min period when Galwegians were camped on our line, but could not break through the red defensive barrier.  Sean McKeown went over for a try, with Ed Torrie adding the rest of the points through his accurate kicking.  Of the 22-man squad on duty, 20 will be underage again next season, so the future looks good.  This Saturday the team travel to Galway once more, with Corinthians providing the opposition.
The UL Bohs Munster Senior Seconds game against Garryowen came down to a kicking battle in Annacotty, with Ian Costello just edging the home side through by 9-6.  However, the visitors will rue a missed opportunity right on the break when a spilled pass on the line with the defence for once absent, ruined what might have been the decisive try.  On Sunday, the 2nds travel to Cork to do battle with Dolphin.
This Saturday the AIL resumes, and UL Bohs will try to maintain their excellent start in the competition against visitors Cork Con.  This promises to be an exciting an open game, but who cares about that?  We just want the win. All home support will be needed against the formidable side from Cork.
The U-11s had a blitz on Sunday morning with visitors Old Crescent and St Mary’s.  In excellent conditions the future of Limerick rugby looked pretty good as all sides showed the benefit of high-quality coaching.
The entire club wishes a speedy recovery to Martin Hanley following his recent operation.  Annacotty is not the same without him.

Linda Kennedy PRO

Under 14 South Munster League
Ballincollig RFC 47 Crosshaven 5

It was a lovely fine fresh morning; a great day for a match and we weren’t disappointed.  There were plenty of tries and some great running lines.  Ballincollig started off the game looking at the heels of Crosshaven players as they took the game to us and scored with their first attack.  Crosshaven kept the pressure on the home side making them work hard to get any foot-hold in the game.  With 15 minutes gone ‘Collig were still behind, but gradually got themselves moving.  In atrocious conditions underfoot, the forwards were grinding away and it paid off just before half time, with Ballincollig’s first try.  They continued on this note beginning the second half, chasing, kicking and putting the opposition under pressure which never relented for 25 minutes.  The home sides running and forward play was making ‘Haven make mistakes which ‘Collig turned into try after try.  As much as they could, Crosshaven could not break the home team down.  Lots of training characteristics coming to the fore, such as talking, rucking and driving.  With their confidence high, the tempo increased, resulting in some good open play keeping Ballincollig in their half for the remainder of the game.  A few more tries, some good substitutes came in to round off a good days work.  “A good win lads, but a lot more team work to be done” commented underage coach Niall Boland.

Under 16’s South Munster League
Bandon 3 Ballincollig 22

The under 16’s had another good win on the road.  Ballincollig started the game well but made crucial mistakes and couldn’t get the ball over the line.  Eventually Dan Swiney got over in the left hand corner after the Ballincollig forwards had put together some great phases.  Bandon responded with a penalty.  Bandon were on that attack, Shaun Horgan make a great interception in his own half and beat three Bandon players to score under the post.  He then converted his own try.  Bandon kept coming at the visitors but Ballincollig defended well.  James Cronin scored in the left hand corner a great individual try after running over three Bandon Players.  Bandon came back in the second half but couldn’t get over Ballincollig’s line.  Collig were forced to defend for most of the second half, Cain Dennehy and Barry McDonagh were introduced earlier in the second half to add fresh legs to the visitors. With 5 minutes to go they got a penalty inside the Bandon half, with James Cronin tapping quickly to put Cain Dennehy in the corner for a try.  Next game Saturday 2 December away to Mallow.  Kickoff 10.30 all support welcomed.

Tries Scorers: Daniel McSwiney, Shaun Horgan, James Cronin, Cain Dennehy
Conv. Shaun Horgan

1. Patrick McLoughney, 2. James Cronin, 3. Gavin O’Gorman, 4. Stephen Collins, 5. John Barry, 6. Ben Coveney, 7. Jeremiah Cronin, 8. Luke Horgan, 9. Josh Tannian, 10. Thomas Marshall, 11.Paul Baston, 12. Daniel McSwiney, 13. Cillian Burke, 14.Shaun Horgan, 15.Stephen McDonagh, 16. Barry McDonagh, 17. Cain Dennehy.

Club News Round-up.

Ballincollig J1’s lost in disappointing circumstances to league table toppers Newport.  The final score in Tanner Park was 3-11, but coach Pat Hanlon was disappointed as Ballincollig slip from third to second in a tight J1 division 2 game.  Given that this team is young, and was only promoted last season, one could be forgiven to think a third or fourth position out of 11 teams should be commended, but Hanlon expands on the squad he’s encharged with, “They’re young but they are very talented, we’re losing games marginally which are within our grasp, it’s just inexperience”.

The J2’s are top of their league, and looking promising with a cup final, the O’ Sullivan Cup (South Munster Cup) coming into the Christmas period, and are looking forward to a J2 League Semi Final in the new year.

Similar good news with the J3 team, currently unbeaten, they are honing their skills and team bonding for this new club addition with some challenge games in recent times, though yesterday’s game versus Bandon was called off due to a secondment of their referee to a J2 game.

Ballincollig Ladies had a productive trip to Division 1 High fliers, Blackrock despite the harrowing scoreline (84-0). ‘Collig are in the unenviable position of rebuilding a team that has been newly promoted into the top flight.  Nonetheless, when a club fields a team with three rookies in the pack and another two in the backline, and they field against a team boasting 3 recent World Cup veterans, including scrum-half Tania Rosser, that experience will yield a lot.  Work on the set pieces, aggression in the break-down should yield more favorable results.  Shannon are next, which is a game that is targeted for a win.  Currently captain Dely Stevenson could do with some luck, as she has lost some of the experienced heads to 6 week or so injuries and has struggled to secure a forward coach, to partner the ever capable Ian Rae.  With the return of Siobhan O’Leary, and the impending arrival of a forwards coach one senses that the new year will mean a corner turned.  Keep up the work ladies!  If you wish to make friends, get fit and learn a new skill join the team on Mondays and Wednesdays at seven, we guarantee that you will feel welcome.

Dermot Keyes PRO

Bonus point secured in five try blitz

Division Three: Dungarvan 3 Carrick-on-Suir 37

Roll on next Sunday!  The visit of Waterford City will be all the more anticipated next weekend following Sunday last’s magnificent performance in our rescheduled game in Dungarvan.

In far from ideal playing conditions, our lads set about their task with great relish and determination, the perfect response following the previous weekend’s defeat in Kinsale.

Just like it was in Cork, it was wet, windy and treacly underfoot – another day designed for a forwards-dominated affair.

Our pack, brilliantly led by a rampaging front row of Eddie Barry, Aaron O’Sullivan and Alan Murray, obliterated the opposition, piling on the pressure in the ruck and on their own put-in.

It was a terrific effort, with quick ball secured for our backline, whose attacking potential became try scoring reality in force for the first time this season.   

From the onset, Carrick dominated this match – with our forwards driving into the Dungarvan line again and again. And that dominance showed on the score sheet, the result in no doubt by half-time.

The tries were scored by Robert Murphy, Brian Slattery (back from injury), man of the match Larry Phelan, Kevin Lanigan and Jamie Steele.

Jamie’s performance was particularly impressive – springing from the base of the scrum with menace and tackling superbly throughout.  There’s a lot to be said for letting the stallion loose on the gallops!  James Wallace added three conversions and two penalties to complete an emphatic victory. 

What was also noteworthy about Sunday’s win was the composition of the squad.  Several players from our Second XV are now beginning to make their presence felt in terms of the First panel.  Aaron O’Sullivan has taken to rugby like a duck to water – a powerhouse of aggression and enthusiasm.

Larry Phelan’s qualities have been there for all to see since the start of the campaign, while Roger Gough at lock sprung from the bench to make his Junior League debut. Kevin Lanigan, in his second league outing, marked the occasion with a try. It’s also worth noting that John Phelan seamlessly moved into First action after just a single season of Seconds rugby.  

The Tybroughney League, which Carrick will finish in second place, has more than proven its worth to Carrick and to our neighbouring clubs in its ultimate function as a development league.  And with three players having just made their first starts for the Second XV, hopefully the trend will continue this season and beyond.  

Next weekend, our Seconds face Waterford City at Tybroughney with a 1pm kick off while our Firsts will face City in League action at 2.30pm. Two more wins would do nicely.

Carrick XV: S O’Keeffe, N Griffin, B Dignam; A Hunter, R Murphy; J Wallace, J Steele; A O’Sullivan, E Barry, A Murray (c); B Phelan, L Phelan; J Phelan, P Lanigan, B Slattery.
Replacements used: K Lanigan, N Phelan and R Gough.
Not used: C Bartley, E Lonergan and P Phelan. 

Loosehead PRO
Rabid Bulldogs Show The Way

The senior side got a timely reminder of Clon firepower before the upcoming vital AIL game against Barnhall when The Bulldogs savaged UCC in Cork last Saturday.  Despite the national papers reporting the exact opposite the game was won by the bulldogs by 46 points to nil.  In a sparkling performance by backs and forwards Stephen O’ Regan, Gearoid O’ Rourke, Mike Buckley and Alan Harte scored a try each while an angry John Kingston, who missed the start of the game, came on late and vented his spleen on the hapless students by scoring four tries.  Gearoid O’ Rourke kicked three conversions.  It was a fantastic result from Clon as a win against Kinsale this Sunday with a bonus point could see them win their section.  The squad, which was led by Mike Murphy was also understrength and can only improve for this final hurdle before Christmas, was: Stephen O’ Regan, Martin Hurley, Gearoid O’ Rourke, Michael Peter O’ Regan, Mike Buckley, Sam Kingston, Alan Harte, Phil Hayes, Mike Murphy, Cathal Kirby, Mel Shanley, Bartle Murphy, Eamon Walsh, Tim Walsh, Kenneth O’ Regan, John Kingston, Cathal O’ Regan and Mike Griffin.

The Extra-Firsts went down 15-5 to Highfield in the senor seconds league in a game played in incessant wind and rain.  They turned over at half time 5-3 to the good courtesy of a Sean Beamish try following good work from captain, John O’ Donnell.  Beamish displayed tremendous patience, coolness and footwork in controlling the ball over 25 metres to pick and ground.  With the elements in their favour it was expected that Clon would add to this lead but they failed to capitalise on the advantage and coughed up two breakaway tries when attacking the Highfield line to lose a game they could have and should have won.  The squad was: Joe Lee, Felim O’ Neill, Padraig Kingston, John O’ Donnell, Sean Beamish, Matt Kirby, Anthony Neville, Shane Walsh, Brian Blackwell, Adrian Fleming, Tom Nyhan, Sean Duignan, Eoin Murphy, Batt Duggan, Peter Stoutt, Mike Murphy, Hugh O’Neill, Cathal O’Regan, Michael Peter O’Regan and Stephen O’Regan.

The Under 20s continued somewhat fortuitously with their winning habit against a very good Waterpark side sneaking it at the death with a Michael Peter O’ Regan conversion.  It showed character however to come back from a significant deficit to score tries through Sean Duignan (2), Hugh O’Neill and Joe Ryan.  Three conversions from O’Regan gave the Clon boys the victory by 26 points to 25.  The under 14s were not so fortunate losing to Highfield in Cork but the 18s were worthy 12-3 victors over Ballincollig away.

This week’s fixtures:

Sat 2 Senior All Ireland League Barnhall The Vale 2.30
  Under 20 League Castleisland Kerry 2.30
Sun 3 Bulldogs League Kinsale The Vale 12.30

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