Mary’s kicked off into Wesley in Ballycorus, the ball was gathered by Wesley just outside their 22 and that’s where the next 30 mins would be played.
Constant Mary’s pressure with strong caries by the forwards especially Mc Gill, Lloyd and Parker made ground every phase. Rambling runs from Fanning caused Wesley serious problems.
10 minutes into the game, the deadlock was broken after the Mary’s scrum half Mc Manus fed Captain Denis Daly after a messy maul 45 metres out. Daly deployed the family side step on multiple occasions to beat several defenders to score just right of the posts. Mc Manus converted.
Not long after Mc Manus slotted a penalty from 35 metres after multiple Wesley infringements.
10 minutes later after scrum dominance Mary’s picked from the back and after strong carry by Parker, Michael O’Malley powered over to score. 15 nil to Mary’s.
This would be Mary’s last points. The last 5 mins of the half Mary’s had to defend for the first time in the game. A solid Wesley maul ended in a 20 metre break away by Wesley’s hooker Ross O’Sullivan and a converted try.
Half time 7 – 15 Mary’s.
The second half was some proper ding dong junior rugby. Strong carries from both sides but the game was going nowhere as knock ons and turnovers were plenty. Neither side looked like scoring but Wesley looked the more dominant.
In fairness to Ref Tom O’Malley he played a fair game and did his best Nigel Owens impressions at scrum time to keep both side entertained.
Wesley turned the screw in the Mary’s 22 with 25 mins to go. Constant pressure and Mary’s infringements led to a lovely try from the Wesley scrum half Call Lynn making use of lazy Mary’s pillars from 5 metres out. Try was converted and score was 14-15. One point game to Mary’s.
Wesley centre Hugo Grattirola continue to dance around the Mary’s defence but both sides went nowhere.
The last 5mins were all Wesley. Mary’s hadn’t scored since the 32nd minute.
Strong defence from Pynner, O’Reilly and McGill meant that Wesley were kept away from Mary’s try line.
Mary’s then made a mistake with one minute to go leading to a scrum for Wesley inside Mary’s 22. Wesley decided to go wide and a huge hit by Mary’s winger Cian Wogan stood up the Wesley centre with 4 Mary’s players rushing in to hold him up for a maul turnover.
Whistle blew and Mary’s left with a one point win. All 20 men in the squad put it a huge shift to hold out a Wesley Team that looked all but dead in the first 30 minutes.
Return fixture awaits!