Weekend Report TRFC
With none of our senior teams having games last weekend, it was the turn of the senior players of the future to take centre stage and fly the black and white flag for Thurles Rugby Club. First up we’re the U16 Boys who were away to Cashel
Thurles U16s 24 – 10 Cashel
Munster Club U16 League
Thurles U16’s played Cashel in a local derby in the Munster Club U16 league Conference 5 this Sunday. This was always going to be a very competitive game and so it proved. Cashel were first out of the block when their strong running full back James O’Sullivan left a number of Thurles tacklers floundering down town side of the pitch in Thurles only to be hauled down 15 metres short by tremendous covering tackle by Armand Schoemman. The danger wasn’t fully averted as from an ensuing rucks Cashel looked to go wide but Ed Connolly shooting up juggled and held the ball to put Thurles on the counter attack and clear their lines. After a couple of phases Thurles won a penalty 20 metres from the Cashel. A simple rehearsed tap move saw John Shaw crash through the Cashel defence for the first score of the game. Ed Connolly added the two extra points with a sweetly struck conversion into the teeth of a strong breeze from well out on the left. The first half swayed back and forth with both teams having opportunities. Thurles through their forwards worked a great field position through a number of phases of recycling only to turnover under the Cashel posts. The Cashel backs made a number of breaks but the Thurles last defence was resolute, with Darragh McCahey pulling off a great tackle on his opposite number. Cashel centre Jamie Duncan made a strong break from his own 10m line through the home defence but Armand Schoemann made of a gap of 10 metres to chase him down 5 metres short and turnover for Thurles. The half ended with Thurles holding a slender 7 to nil narrow advantage. Thurles turned over with a strong breeze at their backs kicking intelligently to keep Cashel hemmed in their own half but it took some 15 minutes of the second half before Thurles registered another score. Hard won field position saw Darragh Kelly held up over the line after a barrelling run. From the ensuing scrum Sam Quinlan picked from number eight and dotted down from 5 metres out. Ed Connolly again landed the conversion superbly judging the wind to get Thurles out to 14. Cashel responded almost immediately winning a penalty close in and scoring from a quick tap. 14 to 5 for Thurles, Cashel crucially missed the conversion giving Thurles a two score advantage going into the last quarter. Thurles scored next, after putting Cashel under pressure in their own 20 metre area and a loose clearance was fielded by Darragh McCahey who beat a number of defenders to score in the left corner at the club house end to make it 19 to 5. Again Cashel responded quickly and were in again for their second to leave the score 19 to 10 with 5 minutes to go. Thurles from a good kick off managed to put pressure on Cashel in their own 22 turning over a lineout. The ball was put through the hands and after centre Owen Byrne cut initially sucking in the Cashel cover, a quick recycle through Connolly to McCahey saw him pick up his second via a nice handoff and sprint in from 10 metres for the final act of the game. A great performance by all 18 players who togged out for Thurles was underpinned by a very good defensive display. This allied with good control through phases and solid set piece were the foundations of the win.
Thurles U18 Boys
Thurles 23 – 3.Cashel Fethard
Last Sunday saw Thurles play their second local derby of the weekend, when they travelled to Cashel to take on a combined Cashel Fethard side.
The visitors dominated from the get go with an early penalty kicked over from the boot of Paddy McGrath. Cashel Fethard soon replied with a penalty levelling the sides. Thurles from the kick off put a lot of pressure on the home side who were forced to concede a second penalty which Paddy duly kicked. The Thurles defence was very strong and this forced Cashel Fethard to make mistakes on the day. Dylan Molumby scored a great try from some good forward work and slick hands out across the line to make it 11 – 3 at half time.
The second half started with Cashel Fethard having a lot of possession but Thurles defence continued to be solid . With a good turn over ball from Thurles and some good ball handling skills, Brian O Connell got in in the corner to bring the score to 16-3. There was a lot of dominance from Thurles in the last 15 minutes and out of this came a try for Thurles 1st centre Shane Stapleton in the last play of the game which Paddy McGrath also converted. There were a lot of good performances on the day from Ciaran Murphy Shane Stapleton George Stapleton & Brian O Connell. Man of the match was Ciaran Murphy for his tireless work in defence. Well done everyone.