|12/03/2011||1:00pm||League||St. Marys J4 XV||5 – 5||Terenure||Home|
The J4’s entertained local rivals Terenure on the main pitch in Templeville on Saturday, for a lunchtime kick-off. After a hard-fought victory over table-topping Barnhall last week, Mary’s were only a point behind in the table with Barnhall having completed all of their fixtures, so a draw or victory would clinch the league for the Blues.
The first half was good, with Mary’s playing reasonably well against a committed Terenure team. Mary’s were making good ground through forward runners and centre Wally Moran also made good yards every time he took the ball on. On 13 minutes, out-half Teddy Moran (Wally’s brother, who played carrying an injury picked up last week), popped an inside ball to the youngest Moran brother, hooker Eamon who carried well. Off the breakdown, scrum-half Ross Wynne went blind to Wally who broke into the Terenure half and passed to his centre partner, Darragh O’Neill who looked like he was going to go all the way to the corner but a last-ditch cover tackle from Terenure stopped him just short. Darragh managed to off-load to supporting winger David Carpenter who scored the try in the corner. Ross took the tricky conversion due to Teddy’s injured leg but couldn’t add the extra points.
Chances in the rest of the half were few and far between, the best coming when No. 8 Padraig Nestor broke from a 5 metre scrum but his pop to Teddy on the crash was read and intercepted by the Terenure scrum-half.
One minute into injury time, Mary’s narrow lead was wiped out when Terenure kicked a penalty to touch deep into the Mary’s 22. The lineout was overthrown but the Terenure man at the back gathered cleanly and crossed for the score. 5-5 at half-time.
The second half became a war of attrition with Mary’s incurring the referee’s wrath at the breakdown and having second row John Twomey and No. 8 Nestor both sent to the sin bin for hands in the ruck in quick succession. For a period of about 6 minutes, Mary’s had to play with 13 men to Terenure’s 15. While it wasn’t pretty to watch, the Mary’s team, especially the pack showed great character to hold Terenure scoreless during this period.
Once Mary’s were back up to 15, we had some good possession in the Terenure half but couldn’t get the winning score. The referee yellow carded a Terenure player on 71 minutes to give Mary’s the numerical advantage until the final whistle, when the 2 points for the draw confirmed us as J4 League Section A Premier Division champions.
Many thanks to the supporters who turned out on the day and those family and friends who have been attending our games and supporting us for the last 4 years. Finally, congratulations to the players, many of whom have worked so hard over the last few years to win this league.
Gavin Rafferty, Manager.
15. Paul Whyte 14. Nick Cunningham 13. Darragh O’Neill 12. Paul Moran 11. David Carpenter 10. Brian Moran 9. Ross Wynne 8. Padraig Nestor 7. Phil Conway (C) 6. Tim Henderson 5. John Twomey 4. Joe Doddy 3. Alan Godfrey 2. Eamon Moran 1. Ross Kelly