Fethard Rugby Club's under 11 panel got the exciting opportunity to play a halftime fixture against a Douglas side at the Munster v Glasgow Warriors in Musgrave park on January 8. A panel of fourteen travelled by minibus with parents and coaches in tow to maintain order. A few singsongs, a lot of fighting for the backseat and one pit-stop later we arrived in Cork.
The first treat was a VIP style entry, no tickets and straight past the queues. The second was to see some squad members in Fethard colours in the match programme and the third and most important was a chance to meet Munster players after the match.
Excitement began as the Munster squad entered the field, realising that in forty-minutes time it would be their chance to play in front of 7,000 rugby fans. As Munster left the field the Fethard squad entered full of confidence and chomping at the bit to go. And go they did! I have never witnessed a mini's game of rugby played with such intensity. From the whistle the Fethard side captained by Gavin Ryan attacked and David McCormack was first to cross the line with a great individual break. The well-drilled Douglas side tried to do the same but were met with ferocious tackles and counter rucking that the Munster squad would be proud of.
After turning over Douglas possession Fethard struck again with a try from Dara Lynch. More great defending followed and for the eight or so minutes the game lasted Douglas did not even get into the Fethard half. The game may have been brief but all players got to showcase their talents. Douglas were gracious in defeat and are eager for a rematch at some stage this season! After the match our squad got to meet a few of their heroes with a lot of the Munster players signing jerseys, balls and anything else our guys could find to write on. A perfect end to a day that will be with them forever.
U-11 Squad: Gavin Ryan, Joe Carroll, Harry Cummins, John Gilman, Danny Gleeson, Daragh Lynch, Dale Murphy, Ruth McDonald, Owen McGarry, David McCormack, Frank Meagher, Padraig Harrington, Patrick Scully and Ciaran O'Dwyer. Coaches: Martin Murphy and Michael McCormack.
Fethard Rugby Club mini's played had an enjoyable morning of rugby at home to Thurles last Sunday. The weather was kind to us and it was marvellous to see so many youngsters out enjoying themselves.
The under-9 squad was: Colin Fitzgerald, Jack Hassett, Sean Ryan, Cain Welch, Mark McCormack, Paddy Gaynor, David Hayes, Richard Robinson, Matthew Burke and Conor Vaughan. These boys played well with some good recycling of the ball along with a few tackles. Keep up the training boys and huge thanks to Alistar MacDonald for all his continued work in coaching this group.
The under-10 squad met a strong organised Thurles team who were well versed. Fethard's team was: Peter Wall, Angus MacDonald, Aaron Quigley, Ben Purcell, Matthew Thompson, Will, Matthew Gleeson, Lucy Murphy, Ian Harrington, David Ivors and Ryan Walsh. They showed a few nice tackles and some pieces of good play throughout their game with a case of work in progress for this group.
Special thanks to the three players of Thurles who swapped with Fethard players to make for a more informative match. Also special 'Get Well' wishes to coach Anthony Wall. We look forward to seeing you back on the pitch soon. Thank you very much to all the coaches, players, parents and supporters who travelled on the day. Training for the minis takes place every Friday evening from 6.45pm to 8pm.