Narrow Nure Victory Secures Junior Cup Semi-Final Spot
February 25, 2015 12:00 am client
It took centre Adam La Grue’s penalty to put this to bed as Terenure came through a cracking quarter-final tie in the Bank Ireland Leinster Junior Cup in association with Beauchamps Solicitors at Donnybrook on Tuesday.
This was one to savour as the pre-competition favourites Terenure engaged the Leinster League winners Castleknock.
There was a spectacular start too as ‘Nure full-back Sam Dardis went high to reclaim the kick-off for immediate front-foot ball.
Their danger men were wider out and it was obvious Castleknock were keen to shut down space with outside centre Mike Leahy off the line quickly.
In return, ‘Knock number eight Cian Clancy peeled off the back of a scrum for a gain that was good for fifteen metres to show ‘Nure they had more to offer than solely defence.
They were implementing a sound maul when fly-half Cian Egenton spilled a pass off it to hand over possession which required Leahy to solve a threatening movement.
Captain Adam Corcoran took a high ball from his ten Egenton and Clancy tested the short side. ‘Knock just couldn’t get to phase number two.
The dazzling feet of Dardis bamboozled two tacklers on a surge that was stopped by full-back James McDonagh. The tide of possession was coming one way.
Then, Corcoran was in like Flynn to poach a penalty, McDonagh countered well and the ‘Knock were in business for the first time with an attacking lineout.
It got scrappy as their hooker Khan Jones lashed at the ball and prop Emmet Reilly rushed to the rescue after La Grue almost made a miraculous escape with an instinctive pick up.
A quick tap by Terenure’s Matthew O’Shea put Henry-Hayes on the ball and his exquisite skip ball to Dardis put the full-back in a position to carry or pass. He chose the former and was shut down.
The same happened when Henry-Hayes was left with a shot to nothing drop goal which came to nothing.
All the while, ‘Knock were making their tackles even when the excellent La Grue threatened down the left.
And then there was their maul. They drew a penalty for side entry and Egenton launched it to within ten metres. This was their time to strike. Corcoran got detached from his pack. They were held up.
From the scrum, Clancy and prop David Sinclair-McCabe went hard without reward.
But, the temptation to shoot up offside was too great and second row Danny Waldron kicked Castleknock 3-0 ahead on the half-time whistle.
The lead fed confidence as hooker Jones put his footwork to good use and Corcoran offloaded beautifully. The end-point was another penalty which Waldron clipped over in the 34th minute.
Their tails were up. Clancy charged forward. Prop Reilly followed his lead and there was always Corcoran on hand to oil their continuity.
Out of nowhere, Dardis’ sweet left to right pass sent Murnaghan on his way. When the wing ran out of road, a lob kick was taken in and home by La Grue from 45 metres.
Centre La Grue’s conversion meant the lead changed hands in the 39th minute.
The play was swinging from end to end. Egenton’s sharp tactical punt returned the pressure to Terenure.
The sheer brilliance of left wing James Nolan’s behind-the-back slip ball to Dardis from Henry-Hayes’ long delivery out of defence deserved more than a knock-on under pressure by Dardis.
It was on a knife edge.
Terenure centre Jack Walsh was almost away but for Dardis to get ahead of him, causing obstruction.
Instead, illegal use of the shoulder on Egenton gave Waldron a difficult chance the lock could not take from wide right in the 51st minute.
‘Knock were still on the front-foot. But, they miscued a lineout and conceded ground.
La Grue was a menace in open play and scrum-half O’Shea saw space and found it with a fine kick to turn the screw.
The temptation to push the play was too great for ‘Knock and they got caught out under their posts for La Grue to kick ‘Nure into the semi-final.
TERENURE COLLEGE 10 CASTLEKNOCK COLLEGE 6
At Donnybrook – TERENURE COLLEGE 10 (A La Grue try, pen, con); CASTLEKNOCK COLLEGE 6 (D Waldron 2 pens).
Terenure: S Dardis; L Murnaghan, A La Grue, J Walsh, J Nolan; D Henry-Hayes, M O’Shea; L Vaughan, B Bruce, M Hasegawa, C Somerville (capt), R McGrath, B Vaughan, L Grady, P Heneghan.
Replacements: J Boland for Hasegawa, S Kirwan for Bruce both 46 mins; R McInnes for Walsh, A Kelly for McGrath both 51 mins.
Castleknock: J McDonagh; L McMenamin, M Leahy, J McGaley, S Mansfield; C Egenton, J Wallace; E Reilly, K Jones, D Sinclair-McCabe, M Mellett, D Waldron, K Ronan, A Corcoran (capt), C Clancy.
Replacements: A Doherty for Leahy 34 mins; M Holton for Reilly 57 mins.
Referee: A Fogarty, Leinster Branch.