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History Made In Clonmel

9th March 2015 By Munster Rugby

History Made In Clonmel

Rugby history was made in Clonmel yesterday afternoon with Clonmel RFC winning the Munster Junior League Division 1 for the first time in the club’s 123 year history.

Rugby history was made in Clonmel yesterday afternoon with Clonmel RFC winning the Munster Junior League Division 1 for the first time in the club’s 123 year history.

Courtesy of:- Paul Condon, Clonmel RFC PRO

In front of a huge crowd, the hosts took on Cobh Pirates in, for what was for Clonmel, the penultimate game of this season’s league campaign. Going into the game on 47 points and with a game on hand over nearest title rivals Newcastle West, the Clonmel side knew exactly what was required in order to secure the title. A win on the day would mean Clonmel would take the honours even if points and games tied on the final weekend. By virtue of Clonmel’s prior win over Newcastle West , the title would go to the Clonmel 1st XV.

However a bonus point win on the day would eliminate any need for permutations and game counts and Clonmel would be crowned league champions. At the other end of the table Cobh Pirates were lying third from the bottom and needed a good result having won all but two of the league games.

On the day it was Clonmel that got off to the better start and controlled much of the play with pressure exerted on the visitors from the outset. It wasn’t long until that pressure was rewarded with the opening score of the game coming from Clonmel’s Luke Hogan crossing the line for his first try of the day.

Conor Cooney converted and Clonmel led 7-0 on thirteen minutes much to the delight of the home support. The intensity continued unabated and five minutes later Morgan Lyons ended a superb sequence of Clonmel play to increase the lead to 12-0. On twenty eight minutes a Cass, Cooney, Hogan combination saw Luke Hogan cross the line for his second try of the game with Cooney delivering a well taken conversion. The sides went to the half time break with Clonmel leading 19-0 and the home crowd daring to dream if today was going to be the day a new chapter in the club’s proud history was going to be written.

There was to be no let-up in the second half and twelve minutes in Neville Melbourne made a sublime run to cross the line and secure the fourth and bonus point try. 24-0 on 52 minutes. The game continued to flow and great open rugby resulted in Darragh Foley making the break to secure try number five and 29-0 on the sixty minute mark. Billy O’ Kelly made it 34-0 before a late converted try by the visitors gave Cobh the only scores of the day. The game finished 34-7 with the win, the bonus point secured and the league title decided in a truly epic eighty minutes of rugby. The team now travels to Old Christians next Sunday to complete the campaign.

The win on Sunday continues a remarkable run of form for the club which saw the Clonmel side win the equally historic Munster Junior Cup for the first time last May in Musgrave Park, the Munster Junior Club of the year for 2013/14 and the Munster Junior Clubs Cup in Fermoy in February of this year. The club now heads into the round-robin plays offs with the other provisional Junior League title winners with the ultimate prize a club promotion to the senior club ranks. While the squad continue to deliver on the pitch, huge credit equally goes to Denis Leamy and Joe Winston, head coach and team manager respectively for their huge commitment and dedication.""

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