Rockwell College's John O' Sullivan in action against Limerick's St. Munchin’s College.
In the precursor to the senior match between the same two sides at Clanwilliam, Rockwell College, following a slow start where they conceded three points, regrouped and dominated St. Munchin's College from Limerick in the first round of the Munster Junior Cup.
The Rockwell backline gave a tremendous display, were very threatening with ball in hand, and their forwards fronted up to the very physical Munchin’s pack, which prevented them from steamrolling this athletic, lighter Rockwell team.
Early in the game Munchin’s laid siege to the Rockwell line and but for some handling errors might have been more in front. 15 minutes into the game Rockwell found good field position from a kick to touch and earned a penalty from the resulting play just inside the opposition’s 22. Flanker Alan Flannery picked up the ball and performed a little tap and go to the surprise of the Shannonsiders who had expected him to kick to touch. The ball was spread through the hands of the backline and found full-back Nickolas Kennedy free on the left wing who duly went in and touched down.
Shortly afterwards and following a yellow card and penalty against Munchin’s out half Jamie Ryan, Rockwell again slipped the ball out wide through some slick movement for Kennedy to score his second try. Kennedy was again put through by Dylan Farrelly to score his third try, leaving the half time score 17-3 in Rockwell’s favour.
Early in the second half Munchin’s flanker Dylan Higgins gave them some glimmer of hope when he gathered from a lineout to cut straight through the Rockwell defence and touch down. The conversion was beautifully struck over by Keith McInerney. However, this was to be their last score as Rockwell went into overdrive, with John O’Sullivan showing great pace to burst through and score an excellent try.
In the remaining 13 minutes, Rockwell displayed great composure and maturity to see the game out. Cathal Hayes at no. 6 showed tremendous work rate in the back row and put in a high tackle count. Nickolas Kennedy was outstanding, showing great pace, Kevin Grogan made many ventures across the gain line, Joe Dean cleared a lot of rucks, Javier Judez showed exhilarating pace on the wing, and Alan Flannery displayed wisdom beyond his years. Final score: Rockwell 22 St. Munchin’s 10.
Rockwell squad: Adam Buttimer, Charles Shanahan, Sam Rapoport, Brian O Dea, Kevin Grogan, Alan Flannery, Joe Dean, Nickloas Kennedy, Javier Judez Aragall, Dylan Farrelly, Peter Wall, Harry Fitzgerald, Eddie Daly, John O Sullivan, Michael Cooper, John Shine, Sean O'Connor, Julen Roman, Sam Tarleton, David Achimugu, Tom Tobin, Richard Anglim, Dean Fanning, Michael Mulligan. Coaches: Danny Lambe, Nick Thompson, Owen Cleary. Physio: Tomas Ryan.