Influential O’Leary guides CUS to Vinnie Murray Cup semi-finals
January 18, 2017 6:51 pm Site Editor
This was an example of how all the raw talent in the world can’t make up for the well-drilled coaching and organisation that comes with the day-in, day-out dedication to any sport.
It was clear Good Counsel, a renowned gaelic games nursery, were blessed with quality in their centres Mikey Dwyer and Morgan Purcell and number eight Daniel Murphy.
They just lacked the cohesion to cause CUS enough problems at the ruck and the set-piece where practice can make almost perfect.
Gradually, the Dublin school got into its patterns of play for their captain O’Leary to strike a 13th minute penalty and convert a try from full-back Ronan O’Leary, showing lovely evasion skills in the 23rd minute.
The killer blow came just before the break when David O’Leary dived over under the posts, got up and added the extras for 17-0 at the interval.
From there, the New Ross boys had to be credited with never lying down as their individual flashes were undone by the winner’s collective work, led by number eight Adam Fleming and the influential O’Leary.
His second penalty was improved by a penalty try when wing Liam Stafford got back to hold Fleming up over the line in an exceptional piece of defence.
Referee Susan Carty arrived on the scene to award a penalty try for a high tackle.
Out-half O’Leary kicked the conversion and shot a late penalty to conclude business for the evening.
CUS 30 GOOD COUNSEL 0
At Donnybrook – CUS 30 (D O’Leary try, 3 pens, 3 cons; R O’Leary try; Pen try); GOOD COUNSEL, NEW ROSS 0
CUS: Ronan O’Leary; Kevin Minihane, Liam Howley, Cody Barton, Christopher Aboud; David O’Leary (capt), Alexander Langan McDonnell; Harry Opperman, Jacob Maguire, John Cole, Victor Nwali, James Horgan, Sean Mullen, Eoin McLoughlin, Adam Fleming.
Replacements: Brendan Meehan for McLoughlin 34 mins; Ultan Doherty for Opperman, Stephen Foley for Nwali, David O’Halloran for Langan-McDonnell all 60 mins; Shane O’Gorman for Howley, Rory Goode for Minihane, both 62 mins; Lorenzo Rabitte for Mullen 64 mins.
Good Counsel: Michael Dunleavy; Thomas Ryan, Morgan Purcell, Michael Dwyer, Liam Stafford; Billy Wickham (capt), Cameron O’Leary; Conor Dalton, James Fitzgerald, Jordan O’Brien, Matthew Redmond, Liam Furness, James Dunleavy, Tadhg Coady, Daniel Murphy.
Replacements: Eoghan Byrne for Dalton ht; Tom Ryan for O’Leary, Stephen Murphy for O’Brien both 61 mins; Patrick O’Mahony for Stafford, Ben Sutton for Roche both 68 mins.
Referee: S Carty, Leinster Branch.