Cork Con FC 1st XV 9 - 10 Clontarf
Venue: Temple HillCompetition: Ulster Bank League Division 1A
Cork Constitution lost a great chance to close the gap with the leading sides when they failed narrowly to repeat their first round win over Clontarf. And not for the first time in this campaign, the game hinged on a controversial refereeing decision in the 65th minute when a penalty try was awarded that gave the home side a crucial seven point lead.
Playing against the strong downfield wind in the opening half, Constitution were contesting well against the league leaders, and took the lead in the 27th minute with a penalty by Gerry Hurley. They continued to match Clontarf and held out until the 40th minute when Richard Lane equalised against his old team mates with a penalty. Hurley missed a chance two minutes later to leave the sides tied at the break.
When Brian Hayes was harshly sin-binned in the 55th minute for obstruction, it proved to be a turning point as Clontarf pressed for a score. Con failed to clear their lines and when a resultant 5 metre scrum went down, the referee scurried for the posts to indicate a penalty try. It was a gift-wrapped seven points for the home side for very little effort.
Despite the setback, Constitution attacked repeatedly, but did not always make best use of the wind advantage. Gerry Hurley kicked penalties in the 70th and 77th minutes as Clontarf hung on, but the merit of the penalty try decision was the main talking point at the post match enquiry.Referee:
Peter FitzgibbonCon Players:
S.Scanlon; R.Clune, D.Lyons, I.Dineen, C.Quinn; J.Holland, G.Hurley; C.Corkery, A.Cudmore, B.Cagney; B.Hayes, P.Donnellan; J.McSwiney, B.O’Hara, James Ryan.Con Scorers:
G.Hurley 3PClontarf Players:
R.Lane; M.McGrath, K.Lett, C.O’Shea, T.McCoy; E.Ryan, S.Cronin;B.Barclay, A.Dundon, N.Treston; B.Reilly, J.Chipman; S.Crawford, B.O’Mahony Capt., F.Cogan.Clontarf Scorers:
Penalty try; R.Lane 1P1C