All Ireland League Roundup
31st January 2022 By Leonard Allen
After twelve series of games in the All Ireland League, the battle for places in the top four in each division intensifies as clubs also battle to avoid the bottom two play-off relegation places.
In Division 1A three of the top places look destined to Leinster sides Clontarf, Lansdowne and Terenure College, with Young Munster and Cork Constitution battling it out for the fourth place.
Young Munster lost fourth place after their surprising 27-8 home defeat by Dublin University. A try by Dan Walsh and a penalty by Evan Cusack had the “Cookies 8-5 ahead at half time but the visitors dominated all aspects of play in the second half to emerge with the spoils.
Cork Constitution took full advantage with a 26-15 bonus point win over Ballynahinch at Temple Hill. John Forde, Max Abbott, Gregg Higgins and JJ O’Neill scored tries for Con’ and Aidan Moynihan added three conversions.
Garryowen were brought back to earth after last week’s derby win over Young Munster when they lost away to Lansdowne 46-5. Bryan Fitzgerald scored a try for Garryowen in the opening half.
Bottom side U.C.C. put up a credible performance away to leaders Clontarf as they lost 26-13. The students trailed 14-13 at the interval with Tim Duggan scoring their try and Eoin Monahan converted and also added two penalties.
Highfield ended a three game run without a win in Division 1B when they defeated Banbridge 19-8. Paul Stack scored two tries for the winners and skipper Chris Bannon got one. James Taylor added two conversions.
Naas defeated Shannon 38-29 to move ahead of them into fourth place in a closely fought game at the Co. Kildare venue. Conor Glynn, Charlie Carmody, Ikem Ugwueru and Lee Nicholas scored tries for Shannon and John O’Sullivan kicked three conversions and a penalty.
A last minute converted try saw Cashel snatch a dramatic 22-19 home win over Old Crescent to move into second place in Division 2A. Niall Fitzgerald, Fearghal O’Donoghue and Alan McMahon scored tries for Cashel and Cian Mullane kicked two conversions and a penalty. Dan Hurley replied with a try for the Limerick side and Ronan McKenna kicked a drop goal, conversion and three penalties.
A strong first half was not enough for Dolphin who slumped to a 50-24 heavy defeat away to M.U. Barnhall. James Vaughan, Daryl Foley and David O’Mahony were among the Dolphin first half try scorers.
The big surprise in this division was Nenagh Ormond’s 41-7 home win over Ballymena a result that gives them a battling chance of avoiding the relegation play-off. John Hayes, David Gleeson, Peter Coman, Evan Murphy, John O’Flaherty and Johnny Hayes were try scorers for Nenagh and Fionn McGibney kicked four conversions and a penalty.
U.L. Bohemian are just three points above the relegation places following their 58-5 home defeat by leaders Queens University.
The two bottom sides in Division 2C recorded surprising wins in their battle to avoid a relegation play-off. Clonmel recorded their first win of the season with an 8-6 away win over Omagh Academicals. Ian Cunningham scored a try for the Tipperary side and Darren Cass kicked a penalty.
A second half fight back by Sunday’s Well saw them defeat Skerries 14-9 at Musgrave Park. Evan O’Connell scored a try for the ‘Well, Eoin Geary kicked two penalties and Josh Featherstone one.
Midleton did both Munster sides a favour when they recorded a 20-19 away win against City of Derry, Ryan Lehane, Julian Power and Jack Colbert scored tries for Midleton and Stuart Lee kicked a conversion and a penalty.
Bruff’s 28-7 away defeat at Tullamore sees them just three points above the relegation zone.
U.L. Bohemian suffered a surprising 31-22 home defeat by Blackrock College in the Women’s Top Four play-offs. Clodagh O’Halloran scored two tries for the Limerick side and Eimear Considine got one. They were also awarded a penalty try.
Ballincollig remain unbeaten in the conference after their 22-10 home win over Cooke. Heather Kennedy, Sinead O’Reilly, Claire Coombes and Roisin Ormond scored tries for Ballincollig and Denise Redmond kicked a conversion.
Below are the results of games played over the weekend.
All Ireland League Division 1A: Clontarf 26, U.C.C. 13;
Cork Constitution26 , Ballynahinch 15;
Lansdowne 46, Garryowen 15;
Terenure College 60, U.C.D. 8;
Young Munster 8, Dublin University 27;
Division 1B: Highfield 19, Banbridge 8;
Malone 0, City of Armagh 0;
Naas 38, Shannon 29;
Navan 28, St. Mary’s College 36;
Old Wesley 22, Old Belvedere 7;
Division 2A: Cashel 22, Old Crescent 19;
M.U. Barnhall 50, Dolphin 24;
Nenagh Ormond 41, Ballymena 7;
Rainey Old Boys 3, Buccaneers 60;
U.L. Bohemian 5, Queens University 58;
Division 2B: Ballina 19, Dungannon 28;
Belfast Harlequins 32, Sligo 22;
Blackrock College 31, Wanderers 26;
Galway Corinthians 17, Malahide 37;
Greystones 59, Galwegians 7;
Division 2C: City of Derry 19, Midleton 20;
Enniscorthy 20, Bangor 25;
Omagh Academicals 6, Clonmel 8;
Sunday’s Well 14, Skerries 9;
Tullamore 28, Bruff 7;
Women’s All Ireland Top Four: Railway Union 11, Old Belvedere 10;
U.L. Bohemian 22, Blackrock College 31;
Women’s All Ireland Conference: Ballincollig 22, Cooke 10;
Malone 12, Wicklow 13;
Suttonians 26, Galwegians 19;