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Home > News > New Ross vs. Kilkenny
Your News New Ross vs. Kilkenny

U16s Stay Unbeaten:

(Kilkenny 7-10 New Ross, 29/11/08, Kilkenny RFC)

New Ross were looking to remain top of the table after this game and managed to do so but not in the comfortable fashion that they had expected. Ross were still a damaged side missing Irish Development player Tadgh Furlong, also Mick Gannon, Gary Bennett, Darragh Treacy, Dean Kennedy and Richard Young were missing from the side. But were gifted with the return of Peter Maher.

It was one of the colder days of the year and it proved effective in this important match for both sides but for completely different reasons. Ross was playing for their position on top of the league to get a slightly more comfortable quarter-final fixture and also didnt want lose their great unbeaten record. While Kilkenny was playing for pride and respect and were hoping to prove that they had strong talent by defeating the league leaders.

The pitch was hard but yet slightly moist from the slowly melting frost which covered the Kilkenny pitch. Ross kicked off the game into a slight breeze that had little to no influence on the balls flight path. Kilkenny recycled comfortably and set up in Ross half but it was not too long before they were shoved back by New Ross and eventually turned over by what looked like a strong Ross pack. But later on in the rather eventless half the Ross pack lost concentration and were turned over at a high rate in the breakdowns. The first half was a tale of two fullback lines for the ball spent a lot of time in the air, because either couldnt produce that extra flare or bite to the game.

Changes were brought into the team at half time, Prop Kevin Browne came on for Brian Mernagh and Niall O Callaghan was moved into the Scrum-half position. After a motivational half time speech by coaches Andy Maher and Mick Fogarty had seemingly sunk into the away sides minds Kilkenny recovered their on restart and proved Ross are going to have to work harder. Ross failed to up the game so they brought in second and final substitution Flanker Des Cleary to bring a bit of edge to the game. Their was 20 minutes left and the game was dying off in many areas until a clever and unstoppable chip was put over the top and conveniently bounced into the Kilkenny Out-halfs hands and he converted the ever waited try. Mistakes were plentiful, 10 minutes left and Ross was piling up the pressure. Quick hands between backs and forwards led to a ruck inside the twenty-two just to the left of the posts when the ball was popped to Jim Ryan who gave a clever dummy and bulldozed over the line, Kevin Burke failed to convert due to the weather and the acute angle of the ball position. With 3 minutes to go Ross found in the same position and quick hands proved the key when Kevin Burke breezed past two men off-loading to Alex Coyne who then found Fullback Kieran Butler who squeezed through the defence and finished in confident style. Once again the thick fog and tight angle proved too much for Out-half Kevin Burke. With 2 minutes remaining big hits from the human rotivators Fionn Healy-Magwa and Alex Coyne helped shy off the Kilkenny attack and eventually after a phantom penalty was rewarded to Kilkenny inline with the posts they opted for the three points to level the game. The kick dropped short into the hands of Des Cleary who sent the ball to mass with a fantastic clearance kick ending the game.

Staff: Andy Maher (coach); Mick Fogarty (Coach); Sammy Bennett (Coach); Mick Gannon (Water boy).

Starting IX:1Ian Kennel-Web; 2 Breen Howlin; 3IsaacMcGrath; 4 Eoin Barden; 5 Oisin Crotty; 6Niall O Callaghan; 7Jack Bolger; 8Peter Maher; 9Brian Mernagh; 10 Kevin Burke; 11 Matthew Purcell; 12 Fionn Healy-Magwa; 13 Alex Coyne; 14 James Ryan; 15 Kieran Butler. Subs: Des Cleary, Kevin Browne,

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