St Mary’s College RFC J1s V Terenure College R FC J1s
Monday 22nd January 2018
This post diluvian match, under lights, was keenly awaited, due to the inclusion of several players returning from injury, and because the metropolitan cup is an old and coveted trophy. After the searing cold spell and the weekend torrents, tonight was a breezy mild night that was rewarded with a good attendance. It was one of those nights that remind members of why they are part of a rugby club. One of those times when there seems to be warm close friendship between players of both sides and alickadoos of both sides and playing is more important than trophies. That is not to say the Marys’ men were exactly pleased to have lost, it is just that it was a sporting sadness.
The game was fast and entertaining and the result testifies to how close it was. Nure had slightly more pace and bite to their game, had better ball retention and just deserved the victory. Marys had a commanding scrum and better defence than has been evident so far and it was good to see some young talent burgeoning. The J1 team is the ideal place to develop quality senior players, allowing them express themselves and learn from experienced club players. We must cherish it.
The impressive front row showed that melange of experience and bursting talent. Young Niall McEniff at tighthead, has all the molecules to make it, he had a fine game and, at the last game against UCD, the very distinct promise of Ronan Watters was noted; he continued his progress tonight.
Under the artistic conduction of Rodney and Tom, the J1s have made progress, so it is sad to exit the Metro Cup, however, the plate awaits to be assailed. Tonight as the joust swayed to and fro, it was clear to see that there was a unison of purpose with some exciting rugby and good performances. Besides the front row and Ronan, all worked hard in the pack and Ian Cullinane contributed well.
Behind the scrum, the ever reliable Conor Gilsenan and Mathew Timmons again performed, as did, Ian O’Neill and David Fanagan at 15, playing a full game after returning from injury; a welcome return. Most unfortunately, the exciting Ryan O’Loughlin, just back from injury was once more injured with a damaged ankle, and had to withdraw early in the game. Darragh McDonnell who had just taken his place on the field also had to retire due to another ankle injury.
St Marys, playing up against the wind, started like Usain Bolt and put distinct pressure on the Nure line. Reward came in the form of a penalty from Matt Timmons after 11 minutes. However Terenure got back into the game and when they won a penalty they took a lineout and Maul and when it was taken down, were awarded a penalty try, 3 -7. Following a good break on 34 minutes, Marys were again penalised for preventing a try illegally and again a penalty try was awarded and a yellow card gifted to St Marys.3 -14. On 37 minutes we got a penalty 6 – 14, at half time.
The second half was at 5 minutes old when David Fanagan added a long distance penalty 9 – 14 and with the wind and the hill, it augured well. However, five further minutes and Terenure struck again with a fine try, so it was 9 – 19. On 34 minutes, Mathew scored a good blindside try after sustained pressure in Carvill corner and the glimmer became a flame, but it was not to be, it ended 16 – 19.
Saturday next, the senior squad take on Cork Con at Templeville Road. Yes Con have a fine team, but we will not think of them. We will think of us; and we will believe. This is where we, the members and supporters, stand up and are counted. Yes, our backs are to the wall, no euphemism will change that. But, when our backs are to the wall and we are fighting for survival, that is when we, the Marys Boys who wear the blue and white, find primeval power and bravery, indomitable drive, when we throw every sinew into the fray, when we never say we are done, when we return as from the dead to strike, and strike until we prevail. In unison, squad and drivers, president and supporters, young and old. We must combine our wills, combine our hopes, combine our belief, then all of us together will survive.
Team (Rolling Replacements) 15 D Fanagan, 14 I O’Neil, 13 C Delaney, 12 R O’Loughlin, 11 M Joyce, 10 M. Timmons, 9 C Gilsenan, 8 I Cullinane, 7 R Watters, 6 D Lyons, 5 N Murphy, 4 R Beverland, 3 N McEniff, 2S O’Brien, 1 E Ferron. L Moran, F Magee, D Daly, D McDonnell, L O’Regan.