On Super Saturday Feb 18th, we had 3 junior teams playing in the club. First up was our J5s v Clontarf. The last time they played in Clontarf the result was 6-5 to Clontarf, today was also going to be close but our lads got the victory 25-18.
This game KO at 1pm and was followed by the J4 game v MU Barnhall. The weather was perfect for rugby, dry and mild, ideal conditions .we welcomed back our loose head Prop Taylor Berliant. Taylor our American friend had suffered from a shoulder injury earlier on in the season, and we were delighted to have him back for this tussle, as Taylor is a player that gives you 110% and never stops tackling for the full 80 minutes. If Taylor tackles you, you know you’ve been tackled. Also back was David Balfour , he hadn’t played last time out due to a dead leg , but was biting at the bit , to get into the game . Dave was last year’s captain. He now is a little leaner but still as hard as ever. He loves nothing more than big hits to get him and the team going.
Barnhall had a large pack and it was noticed that they had a lot of different players than when we played them before. They were on a winning streak having won their last 4 games. We got stuck in from the start but they scored first with a try which included crossing and a knock on, but the referee gave the try. 7-0 to Barnhall. We got a kick into the corner and started our line out maul which had been excellent all season. Gareth Lloyd got the touchdown. Conversion missed score now 7-5 to Barnhall.
They again bashed there way to our line scoring another try, con missed. Score now 12-5 to Barnhall.
We knew we had to get ourselves back into the game as it was our mistakes that gave them the tries. The next penalty we got, Dave Daly got us into their 22. Line out won again we started our maul. Gar Lloyd again broke, and raced towards their line, scoring a splendid try. Con missed score 12-10 to Barnhall.
A call came to not contest at the ruck because the ref was blowing us off the park. We were trying to get our game going but with all the penalties it was stop / start. There now was a good crowd watching from the sidelines. We had past and present Junior 4 & 5 players, parents, family, wives and girlfriends up supporting the boys in blue. We then started to get some possession and got fine try by our winger Denis Daly who ran through and around the Barnhall players to get the touchdown. Dave Daly converts score now 17-12 to the star. Half time.
We now started to believe and kicked for the corner as both the Sun and wind were in the Barnhall player’s faces. Tries were scored by Shane Fanning, converted by Dave Daly, now 24-12, and then minutes later another try by Denis Daly
converted by Dave. Score 31-12. We were going through the motions after that, and took our eye of the ball. The last 15 minutes was all Barnhall .They scored 14 points. If there was another 5 minutes we could have lost this one. Final score 31-26 to Mary’s.
What we learned today was that if we play to our potential we can score at will, but if we step down a gear, we are awful. We won playing badly, which is a sign of a good team. When we win this league we will be a great team.
As we head for the dressing rooms we hear our J2s have beaten our neighbours Terenure 14-10 in the O’Connell Cup. Mossy and Bobby have organised a reunion for all past Junior players. The club is buzzing, everyone in junior rugby won today. The club is alive again, the 1sts return from Young Munster with a losing bonus point and the club is hopping. It’s like old times. A lot of hard work has been put in by the managers, coaches and players themselves. They got a small taste of what it would be like if they won silverware, if this doesn’t get the juices flowing nothing will. The month of March will be the deciding month as all league games will have been played by then. Currently the J4s are second in their league 1 point behind Old Belvedere who they play in their last league game, so all to play for. The J5s are also second in their league 1 point behind Stillorgan, who they also still have to play. All good in Junior rugby at the moment.
15. James Walsh, 14. Peter Daly, 13. Richard Pyne , 13. Mick Daly (Captain), 11. Denis Daly,10.David Daly, 9. Cristian, 8.Gar Lloyd, 7. Padraig Nestor, 6. David Balfour, 5. Richard Fagan, 4. Shane Fanning, 3.David Browne, 2. Chris Kane, 1. Taylor Berliant.