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JP Fanagan – Prem 1 – Sunday 25| 02 | 24 – Lakelands

On a bright February Sunday afternoon in Lakelands, with a cold North Easterly breeze blowing unusually up the pitch, Terenure’s brave U20s came to play entertaining rugby. Terenure were playing up the hill with the wind in the first half.

Their opening kick was high and floated on the wind. Lansdowne struggled to deal with it and conceded an early lineout. Terenure got into their shape early and after winning the lineout settled in to their stride, taking Lansdowne through the phases. It felt promising, but the cold wind started to play havoc, and Terenure’s passing let them down.

Sponsors of the U20s Squad

A scrum penalty gave Lansdowne their first entry into the Terenure half on 13 minutes, and some quick phase play and work on the short side eventually undid Terenure’s defence allowing Lansdowne to score their first try. The conversion followed to leave the score 0-7.

From the restart Terenure won possession and attacked through the phases. There was no advantage following a high tackle 30 meters out so Terenure opted for points. In the difficult wind the ball rebounded off the left upright and Lansdowne cleared their lines.

Terenure must have been winning the possession stats but couldn’t sustain enough pressure. Lansdowne were the more disciplined side and following some good play were awarded another penalty from which they kicked to the corner. Despite some brave defending the visitors eventually crossed the line and converted to leave the score 0-14 with 15 minutes remaining in the half.

Terenure kept their heads and continued to play some great rugby. Following a Lansdowne penalty scrum-half Peter MacNamara’s quick tap allowed him to dart up the field. He was denied a try by some desperate Lansdowne defending, but he won another penalty. This time captain Oisín Shannon chose to go to the corner. With regular hooker Ollie Udell injured Tom Stewart started for the first time this season. He had a good match, his darts were on target and his work around the pitch was noticeable. Once again Terenure set up their maul, and this time they were not to be denied with Stewart getting over for Terenure’s first try, converted by Harvey O’Leary to make it 7-14 with 10 minutes left in the half.

As the game continued it was apparent that Terenure’s defence was their biggest attribute. Another forced turnover allowed Terenure to move up field again. A brilliant run from hooker Stewart taking Nure deep into the Lansdowne half. Another penalty allowed Nure to go for the corner again, and following another perfect lineout and strong maul Stewart emerged from the pack with another try. O’Leary failed with the extras to leave the score 12-14.

With only seconds remaining in the first half Lansdowne made their way downfield. A penalty from Terenure gave the visitors access to the red zone again. Some wonderful defence from the lineout maul followed by some brave tackling on their goal line, where it looked like every one of the Nure men made at least one tackle, eventually forced a knock-on and the ref blew for halftime.

The second half was a battle. Terenure started the brightest and some good attacking followed by a penalty provided the opportunity for Terenure to go to the corner again. Unfortunately they could not deliver the score they needed and Lansdowne kept them out.

These were two good teams, going hard at each other with every meter gained a battle. There really was little between them and it looked like any score might be enough to decide the outcome. Unfortunately for Terenure it was the Lansdowne team that got that score with a well worked try in the corner. With the score now 12-19 and only 15 minutes remaining the match was still in the balance and Terenure fought to win it.

As the game entered the final minutes and with the strong wind at their backs Lansdowne played the game deep in Terenure’s half. Terenure could not find a way down field. The desperate need to score probably caused Terenure to play with more risk. The high risk did not pay off and Lansdowne pounced on loose ball to counter quickly and score again for their bonus point try. Another try followed for the visitors at the final whistle to leave the final result 12-33.

While this match result didn’t change Terenure’s position in the league, they do look forward to playing Barnhall and Old Wesley in the coming weeks, before setting up a mouth-watering first round McCorry Cup clash again with Lansdowne on 24th March.

Terenure Team
Alex Cashman
Tom Stewart
Tim Staunton
Oisín Shannon (Capt.)
Evan Collins
Ultan Byrne
Sean Ruane
Darragh Brooks
Peter MacNamara
Harvey O’Leary
Tom Murray
Jack Grimes
James Clarke
Fintan Dignam
Jim Kennedy
Michael Murphy
Joe Lockhart
Ben Nolan
Oisín Nutty
Cillian Keaney
Oscar Morgan
Eoghan Walsh

Referee: David Williams (ARLB)