Cashel 18 UCC 12
With the first and third teams not on duty last weekend, Cashel Senior Seconds took center stage on Sunday at Spafield against UCC.
With there wins out of four, Cashel were most anxious to get back to their winning ways after the narrow late defeat to Cork Con the previous Sunday. Conditions were perfect with a slight breeze favouring Cashel in the first half as they played in to the clubhouse end.
UCC started well and and took the game to Cashel. It was clear from the start that both teams wanted to run the ball. UCC were attacking on the 22 when they were overturned. Cashel scrum half Darren McGrath put in a huge kick down field that was chased by Pat Oâ€™Connor, one of the fastest men on the Cashel team. He kicked ahead and won the race to touch down for a great try.
Cashel took over at this stage and carried the game to UCC. On the 15th minute the pressure told and Cashel were awarded a penalty which Ollie McGlinchey kicked to stretch the lead.
For the next 10 minutes the game went from end to end with some entertaining running rugby. The Cashel back row of Michael Cross, Kieran Murphy and the excellent Alan Downey were wonderful. They tackled and harassed and carried the ball at every opportunity. Second rows Kieran Gleeson and Alan Dwyer were excellent in the lineout and up front Ian Stanly, Captain, Paddy Maher and Emmett Hall were very solid in the scrum.
Cashel used the wind to good effect and on the 25th minute they won a lineout on the UCC five meter line, set up the maul and drove to the line. At the tail of the maul was Ian Stanley and he took the try in great style. That was the final score of the first half to leave it 13-0.
UCC had the benefit of the wind in the second half but Cashel took the game to them. Impatience on a few occasions cost them scores. Darren McGrath played well at scrum half and the versatile Ollie McGlinchey controlled matters at out half. In the center Andrew Wallace was full of running and Colin Morrissey was immense. Though hampered by a hamstring strain he tackled like a demon and showed some great form going forward.
Pat Oâ€™Connor who took his try well and Ross Mullane on the other wing were also full of running. Ger Oâ€™Sullivan at full back was very solid particularly under the high ball.
The second half was most entertaining with UCC throwing everything into attack. Ten minutes in they scored a great try after a sustained spell of pressure. Cashel coach John Johnston used his bench well. Prop Cormac Oâ€™Donnell was very strong when introduced. Tommy Flynn, Michael Oâ€™Connor and Robert Thornton played a huge part when they were introduced.
But the real trump card was the introduction of Michael Hickey at scrum half. Michael is an excellent player who is pushing very hard for a regular place on the first team. He is strong on the ball, a good defender when the team is under pressure and is a master of the half break. With 7 minutes left and the match in the balance, Michael made a break from half way. He took out two defenders and fed the ball to Michael Cross who ran from the 22 to score a great try in the corner. This put Cashel 13 point ahead but the game was far from over as UCC never gave up.
They attacked Cashel again and finally on the 80th minute they scored a good try. The conversion was the last score of the game.
It was a very entertaining game with both sides concentrating on good running rugby. This Cashel team is not in action next weekend.
Cashel: G Oâ€™Sullivan, P Oâ€™Connor, A Wallace, C Morrisey, R Mullane, O McGlinchey, D McGrath, E Hall, P Maher (C), I Stanley, Alan Dwyer, K Gleeson, K Murphy, M Cross, A Downey, T Flynn, C Oâ€™Donnell, K Sweeney, M Hickey, M Oâ€™Connor.
Munster Senior Cup Semi Final
This Saturday Cashel first team travels to Templehill in Cork to take on the mighty Cork Constitution in the semi final of the Munster Senior Cup. It is a daunting prospect but this Cashel team is well prepared by Ian Dunne and Greg Olliver and an exciting game is expected. It is important that all Cashel supporters travel to support the team. Kick off 2.30pm.