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Club News Weekending 23rd March 2008

19th March 2008 By Munster Rugby

Weekly club reports and news from around the province

OLD CRESCENT RFC
Pat Rickard RFC

A quiet week with the under 20s the only adult team in action last weekend. They hosted Garryowen on Saturday in the North Munster under 20 league. Our side put an brave performance in the opening 20 minutes but eventually the superior fitness of the visitors drove them onto victory. This weekend the play Newcastle West in the league on Saturday at Rosbrien. The AIL returns on Saturday with the long trip to Ballynahinch for our 1st XV in their quest for Division 2 rugby next season.We would encourage as many members as possible to make the journey to support the team. The 3rd XV host a touring side from Harvard University on Saturday at 4pm.

In under age news, the highlight of the weekend was the visit of Cork Con under 18?s to Rosbrien on Monday. Our side put in an excellent display of rugby taking the game on a scoreline of 10 points to 7.
There is no training on Sunday morning for under age as it is Easter Sunday. Training resumes on Sunday March 30th at 10am.

Finally this week tickets are now available for our President’s Night to be held in the Falls Hotel in Ennistymon on April 12th for any member of the Committee. Tickets are priced at ?55 and the club has also arranged a special rate for overnight accommodation with the hotel. Those interested in playing in the President’s golf outing on that afternoon should contact Paddy Geraghty.

KILLORGLIN RFC
Aidan Clifford PRO

Killorglin Rugby Club Under 18 team, the West Munster League Champions, took on their North Munster counterparts Bruff in the Munster Semi-Final last Sunday 16th of March. They travelled to Limerick in high spirits, but were missing winger David O Sullivan who picked up an injury in the team?s West Munster League Final win over Tralee. They performed very well but were outclassed and outsized on the day, and were beaten 40-0, a score that didn?t really paint a fair picture on the game. Killorglin had their fair share of possession but couldn?t capitalize as Bruff?s defense was watertight. Bruff now go on to the final next week but Killorglin?s season isn?t over yet. They can still complete a double in West Munster as they play Abbeyfeale in the cup semi-final in 2 weeks time.
Team: – 1 Barry Sheehan, 2 Stephen Cotter, 3 Michael Breen, 4 Shane Costello, 5 Stephen Mullins, 6 Declan Lillis, 7 John James Johnson, 8 Liam Walsh, 9 Pa Knightly, 10 Luke O?Shea(c), 11 Lorca Maher, 12 Rikus O?Connor, 13 Chris O?Sullivan, 14 Noel O?Reilly, 15 Caoinlan Soffer. Subs: – Donagh McGillicuddy for O?Connor, Mark Riordan for Johnson, Pa Kilkenny for Knightly, Liam Griffin for Maher. Unused: – Keelan Foley, Mikey Griffin, Tony Lynch. Coaches: – John Costello and Dermot O?Shea.
Killorglin RFC would like to thank all the support that travelled to Bruff on the day. It was much appreciated. Killorglin are also very grateful to Bruff for hospitality shown to the players, coaches, and officials.

SHANNON RFC
Andrew McNamara PRO
A much coveted semi final place in the Munster Junior cup was the reward for our seconds as they swept past the challenge of a battling Tralee side last Sunday in Coonagh. In the end it was a rather comfortable victory and the 27-7 final score is a fair enough reflection of the events. It was an even encounter for the opening quarter, but as soon as the lads got into their stride they looked impressive and likely winners. Colm McMahon was on top form and crossed for the opening trey after 28 minutes which was soon added to by Gary McNamara who came up with the ball after a close in maul. Tralee didn’t lie down and after Gary’s try they pushed hard for a response and after sustained pressure crossed to leave the half time score at 12-7 and a reminder to the lads that they couldn’t rest on their laurels. Any notions of complacency were dispelled soon after the restart when George Murray layed up an excellent kick for Mark Tuohy to chase and he made no mistake and went into the corner. By now we were more or less dominating the proceedings and s further buffer came when Eamon Lane tapped over a penalty to add to his previous conversion. The backs were playing well and the last try came when Shane Mullally rounded off a flowing move in the 73rd minute which sealed the well deserved win. So far so good for the seconds, but with the luxury of home advantage for our games in the cup to date now gone, the semi final against UCC will be a different prospect in Cork.
The date has yet to confirmed, but it looks most likely that it will be in the first two weeks of April.
On Sunday our under 13s completed their excellent North Munster League campaign with a 61-12 win over Ballina-Killaloe in Coonagh on Sunday. An excellent all round performance from the team saw two tries each from Greg O’Shea, Conor Burns, Jack Dineen and man of the match Patrick Kearns with Conor Glynn adding the ninth after a typical barnstorming run. Ronan McKenna converted four of the tries, Greg O’Shea two of them and Joey Purcell adding two more.
Ballina-Killaloe upped the pressure on us in the second half scoring two nice tries, but the damage had been inflicted on them in the first half. We now await results from some of the remaining fixtures to see whether we have finished on top of the league or whether we will have to playoff for the title.
The seniors return to AIB League this Sunday when we travel to Musgrave Park to play top four contenders Dolphin. I don’t think anyone at this stage of the season needs reminding how crucial the remaining fixtures are. A win will guarantee a playoff spot which is a huge incentive for the lads, but nothing can be taken for granted against a side that we have found very tough in our last few outings. Kickoff is at 2.30 on Sunday.
U/18 player Luke O’Dea is the latest Shannon player to gain international honours when he lined out for the Irish U/18 side in the European championship over the past week. He scored a try in their opening win over Russia and lined out again at fullback for their next victory over England. The Irish side play in the final against France on Saturday afternoon and we wish Luke and his colleagues the very best.
Congratulations must go to Peter Murray and his Castletroy College colleagues on their magnificent achievement in beating one of the bastions of schools rugby in the senior cup final. It’s a wonderful achievement for the fledgling school and one which will no doubt inspire others in the future.

The thirds play the O’Carroll plate this Saturday in Ennis at 2.30 and in Coonagh the U/18’s entertain Haverford west from Wales.

GARRYOWEN FC
Christopher Barry PRO

Our seniors return to AIB league action when they travel to Crowley Park to play Galwegians on Saturday at 2.30. This is our last away game before we conclude with home fixtures against Old Belvedere on 29th March and UCD on 19th April. With the league compacting somewhat just outside the top four, it is imperative that we come home with full points to maintain our push for a semi final slot. We have had a number of players unavailable or injured in recent matches, so Dara O’Sullivan will be hoping to select as strong a panel as possible for this difficult assignment. Last Saturday our 3rdXV maintained their winning sequence with a well deserved 19-3 win over St. Senan’s in the Webb Cup at Dooradoyle. Anthony Gahan (2) and Andrew Nevin were the try scorers. Indeed Andrew showed no mean turn of speed to race 35m for a fantastic score which was greeted with a great cheer from his bemused team mates. Diarmuid Waters kicked two conversions to complete the scoring. On Saturday the competition continues when we play UL Bohemians in the quarter final in Annacotty at 2.30. Our U20’s had a rather easy NM U20 Cup win over Old Crescent at Rosbrien, eventually running out 48-0 winners. Next Tuesday we play Bruff in Dooradoyle under our new lights. It will be certainly worth a visit to see these splendid TV-standard illuminations. Congratulations to light blues, Paul Dooley, Diarmuid McCarthy, Mark Hanrahan, Dara Bonfil and coaches John Staunton and John Keehan following Castletroy College’s unique Junior/Senior Cup double. Dooradoyle never looked better as the huge crowd were treated to an enthralling game with the Limerick team just prevailing 21-15 over CBC in one of the better senior cup finals in recent years. Captain Paul Dooley lifted the Cup to a huge cheer. Doesn’t seem so long ago that these young players began their rugby careers on Sunday mornings in Dooradoyle, how time flies. Garryowen FC are indeed grateful to the rugby community at large for making this such a successful day for our club. My thanks to those who sent best wishes messages to the club during the week. A special word of thanks, to Ger Clarke, Sean Canny, Killian Slattery, John Noonan, JJ, Tony Mullins, Dave Ryan, Dermot Morrissey and Seamus Maher et al for their fantastic efforts in getting everything in ship shape for the big day. The Munster Branch again demonstrated their professionalism in organising such a major event at an alternative venue. My thanks to Trish Drinan for her unstinting efforts on the day. Our condolences to the Dempsey family, following the sad passing of Gerry Dempsey during the week. Gerry was the beloved Father of Anne, wife of our President John Garrett

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