13.04.2013 1st XV v UL Bohemians (A)
UL Bohemians RFC V St Mary’s College RFC
AIL Division 1 A,
Saturday 13th April 2013.
Heavy rain with strongest breeze,
Gave Uni win by hard degrees.
It would probably be fair to say the two teams’ needs were different leading to different actions. However, there is no doubt but that UL Bohs deserved their win. They were fighting for divisional existence and it was evident, as they fought with civet like intensity in all aspects of the game; they deserve real credit. In being fair to one, one must be fair to the other and in that regard it should be attended that since last week alone, several forced changed had to be made, with Steve Bradshaw, injured in training, Marcus O’Driscoll incapacitated, Darragh Fanning tied up by exams, Rob Sweeney unavailable, our great captain, Richie Sweeney, still only on the bench and Matt D’Arcy not fully recovered. It can be seen from the list that all are major players for St Marys and their loss significant.
The weather did not help the game, with a very strong wind. Marys had that wind in the first half but a sluggish and often inaccurate approach did not help us to make use of it. The second half saw a big change in approach, accuracy and attitude by Marys and it was only due to almost manic defence by UL Bohs that we did not prevail. We are of course safe and lie 8th at present, with a chance of going 7th next week, while, UL Bohs will play Con; and Shannon, beaten over the weekend, by our next opponents YM play Lansdowne. These two matches will decide which of the two, UL or Shannon, will be relegated and which will play the 1B runner up.
We did see some fine attacking rugby in the second half and our Steve Toal-Lennon, Ryan O’Loughlin and Christopher Lilly, in the backs, particularly impressed, as did Mark Fallon, Ciaran Ruddock and Kevin Sheahan in the forwards.
Our last game of the league campaign V YM next Saturday has real importance in itself and most especially in preparation for our big All Ireland (Bateman) Cup Final V Cork Con on 27th April at Templeville Road. Having beaten Clontarf at Castle Avenue, in a close game on Sunday, the J1s are now in the Metro cup final and heading for a double. So, let us see all of us make a special effort to get there, you know when the season is over, everyone will miss the games the society and the excitement.
As mentioned above, although playing against the wind UL held possession well and defended with tenacity. We failed to get the ball wide, effectively, and frequently lost possession or were penalised by Mr Rolland, so UL amassed the points from three penalties, on 20, 23, 35 minutes, and a well-struck drop goal on 40 minutes. The half finished 12 – 0.
The second half started so much better for us, and after five minutes Gavin Dunne struck a penalty to bring the score to 12 – 3 but five minutes later they cancelled it with another penalty to make it 15 – 3. The game carried no more scoring, however, we put immense pressure on for almost eth entire half, we rattled the line, drove in numbers and pasted them but they tackled and tackled with body, head or arms and never shirked, so we failed to get over and near the end when the pressure was almost explosive they turned over the ball and got up the field. We could not begrudge them their win and our young players will have learned a good lesson.
The Team (Rolling substitutions)
15 A Bourke, 14 S Toal-Lennon, 13 R Hudson, 12 P Brophy, 11 R Crotty, 10 G Dunne, 9 R Glynn, 8 D Keller, 7 K Sheahan, 6 M Fallon, 5 G Sexton, 4 C Ruddock, 3 A Lyons,2 D Fawcett, 1 C Mc Mahon, .C Lilly, Richard Sweeney (Capt) R Lennon, N Murphy, R O’Loughlin,