J4 XV v Old Belvedere (A) 24.03.2017

On Friday night last our J4s travelled to play Old Belvedere in Anglesea Road. We were expecting delays as the Irish soccer team were playing Wales up the road in the Aviva, but everyone arrived early as the traffic was lighter than expected.

This game was our final league game of a campaign that started last September.

The J4 & J5 squads have dedicated themselves totally to the cause this season, putting in the hours at training and trying to balance their working and family life around rugby . The commitment given by these amateur players is to be complimented. Both the players, coaches and managers have done this for the love of the game. There is no financial reward but there is the satisfaction that we as a squad we have gotten fitter/ stronger more skillful and competitive.

We now can compete and this is proven with the fact that both the J4s and J5s are both in their respective league play off finals.

The J4s got stuck in from the start. Score at half time 10-6 to Belvo. 2 penalties by our out half David Daly.

Belvo then at half time brought on a few subs. They executed brilliantly some back moves, some missed tackles and they were in for 3 tries in 10 minutes.

Score was now 29-6.

The lads had 2 choices. Stand up and fight or take a hiding. They decided to get stuck in. Drive after drive, ruck after ruck. We pushed our way to the Belvo line. Penalty kicked now 29-9. We were getting stuck in. We kept them in their 22 for the last 15 minutes. A few scuffles broke out as the Belvo team didn’t like was happening. They couldn’t get their hands on the ball. We were on their line, pounding into them and they were putting in big hits, we received a penalty and they got a yellow card for not releasing. Scrum called we were going to score a try if it killed us .Eventually our captain for day Padraig Nestor got the ball over the line .Conversion missed. Whistle blows. Final score 29-14.

We learned how to get in their faces. Head coach Mick Flats is delighted as we circle around for a team talk. He is delighted because we showed some liathroidi. We got in their faces, and were proud of our performance as the odds were stacked against us. We owned the ball for the last 20 minutes. As he said this is only half time as we will play Belvo again in the play off final in 2 weeks.