Ulster Ravens 7 v 37 Leinster ‘A’
October 22, 2015 / jmcconnell
Leinster ‘A’ chalked up their second successive win of the season with a six-try salvo in defeating Ulster Ravens at Ballynahinch RFC this evening…
Ballymacarn Park was bathed in early evening sunshine for this 'A' interprovincial clash. The game kicked off in perfect conditions with the Ulstermen playing towards Slieve Croob in the first half.
Leinster 'A' opened the scoring in the fourth minute after good work on the right wing by Darragh Fanning created room for full-back Adam Byrne who beat two Ravens defenders before finishing well for an unconverted try.
The visitors scored their second try in the 14th minute when Thomas Farrell charged down a clearance kick from Mark Best. Farrell collected the loose ball and sprinted in for the try. His centre partner Tom Daly missed his second conversion attempt at 10-0.
The Ravens had their first opportunity to score in the 20th minute when a patient build-up was halted with Leinster 'A' leaking a penalty. However, the hosts failed to secure the ball from touch and their chance to put points on the board slipped by.
The Ulstermen kept the pressure on, opting to kick penalties into the corner or taking the scrum option. After Sean McNulty was caught offside in the 28th minute, the Ravens called for another scrum which saw them send the Leinster 'A' pack backwards, and they duly won a penalty try with much credit to front rowers Kyle McCall, Jonny Murphy and Bronson Ross. Captain Sam Windsor added the extras.
Windsor's opposite number Joey Carbery, who has been impressing for Clontarf of late, converted a penalty goal for the visitors on the stroke of half-time after the Ravens were caught offside at a ruck. That made it 13-7 at the break.
The Ulster outfit has a great opportunity to get the second half off to a good start. However, Windsor's penalty to the corner was overcooked, giving Leinster 'A' a scrum back on their 10-metre line.
In the 47th minute, winger Fanning finished off a sweeping Leinster 'A' passage of play that was started 5 metres from their try-line when Mick McGrath launched a terrific counter-attack and Adam Byrne also made a strong carry. Tom Daly converted to take the visitors 20-7 clear.
The Ravens' woes increased two fold within minutes, first winger David Busby had to retire injured and was replaced by Robert Lyttle, then centre Callum Patterson was shown a yellow card for going off his feet at a ruck – a repeat offence which referee David Willkinson had warned the Ulster side about.
Young centre Farrell completed his brace in the 62nd minute after some excellent build-up play, with McGrath taking a high ball and making good ground. Farrell smashed his way over in the right hand corner. Carbery failed to convert at 25-7.
As the game entered the final 10 minutes, Leinster 'A' really tightened their grip on the game. In the 73rd minute, impressive out-half Carbery spotted a gap and slipped through the home defence, close to the posts, to score his side's fifth try which he also converted.
Leinster 'A' then finished off their successful visit to Ulster with a sixth try during the final play, scrum half Charlie Rock picking up from the base of a ruck on halfway and attacking the blindside where he raced clear to complete the scoring.
REFEREE: David Wilkinson (IRFU)
REPLACEMENTS: Adam McBurney, Ruaidhri Murphy, Craig Trenier, Connor Smyth, Lorcan Dow, Frankie Taggart, Connor Young, Johnny McPhillips, Kieran Joyce, Alex Kane, Robert Lyttle.
REPLACEMENTS: Bryan Byrne, Ian Hirst, Royce Burke-Flynn, Max Deegan, Will Connors, Rory O'Loughlin, Harrison Brewer, Jimmy O'Brien, Hugo Keenan.