Cork Con FC 1st XV 13 - 22 Clontarf
Venue: Castle AvenueCompetition: All Ireland League Division 1
Clontarf avenged their first round defeat at Temple Hill, when claiming the points at Castle Avenue on Saturday. On a wet and dismal afternoon, the home side had taken control by half-time after an uncertain start, but saw out the second period despite a strong showing by Constitution.
Constitution won the first League encounter in November on a 24-17 score line, with Clontarf claiming a losing bonus point; and but for a late missed conversion in this game, Constitution would have squared that series. In the event, Clontarf maintained their push for Divisional honours, while Constitution will have extra ground to make up in the coming weeks.
Conditions were pretty inclement as the teams took the field, but Constitution made a positive start when Tomas Quinlan converted a close in penalty after just five minutes. Clontarf missed a long-range penalty chance on 13 minutes, before right wing Rob Keogh scored the opening try on 15 minutes. Joyce added the conversion for 7-3. And on 20 minutes, Keogh scored a second try, that was unconverted, for 12-3.
Constitution battled hard to regain their composure, and were rewarded when second row Conor Kindregan scored from a maul to the line in the 37th minute. The conversion was missed, so Clontarf led 12-8 at half-time.
The home side had the better of the second half exchanges, with a lot of possession that they turned into points with a try by their regular scoring machine Mick McGrath on the hour, converted by Joyce. 19-8 to Clontarf, and a penalty five minutes later kicked by Joyce, left Clontarf well in command.
But, Constitution did not concede lightly, and an unconverted try in the 70th minute by Rob Jermyn for 13-22, set up an exciting finish. However, conditions were not conducive to accurate play, and the home defence were secure to the end.
After twelve series on matches, Lansdowne lead the table on 45 points; Young Munster are second on 39; Constitution are next on 35 points, with Clontarf fourth on 33 points.Referee:
M.Patton IRFUCon Players:
L.O'Connell; A.McHenry, N.Hodson, N.Kenneally (capt), R.Jermyn; T. Quinlan, J.Poland; L.O'Connor, M.Abbott, G.Sweeney, C.Kindregan (Capt.), B.Hayes, G.Lawlor, J.Murphy,
L.Cahill. Replacements: V.O'Brien, R.Burke, C.Barry, J.Higgins, JJ O'Neill.
C.Kindregan 1T; R.Jermyn 1T ; T.Quinlan 1P.Clontarf Players:
J.Power; R.Keogh, M.Browne, M.D'Arcy, M.McGrath; D.Joyce, S.Cronin; V.Abdalabze, J.Harris-Wright, R.Burke Flynn, B.Reilly (capt), E.Browne, K.Moran, A.D'Arcy, M.Noone.
Replacements: J.Larbey, J.Doyle, N.Reilly, D.Doyle, M.Sutton.
R.Keogh 2T; M.McGrath 1T; D.Joyce 1P2C.