Young Munster 17pts – Trinity 21pts; October 7th 2017
Trinity surprised everyone in Irish Rugby, when they achieved their first win of the season in Tom Clifford Park, Limerick. This was the students’ first visit of the season to rugby mad Munster. Trinity was given very little hope by everyone on social media, but the squad have been working extremely hard in training and pulled out a magnificent result to reward their efforts.
Trinity started out fast, with a lot of intent, but handling errors really stopped them asserting pressure on the home team. “Munsters” soaked up the pressure and then scored an easy enough try to go 7-0 up. Trinity continued to attack, but the home team scored again from close in.
At 14-0 things did not look too bright for the students as the home team seemed to have the ability to score when they felt like it. But the visitors dug in, kept attacking and full back Michael Silvester swerved his way through several defenders to go deep into enemy territory. Trinity gained a penalty and out half Tommy Whittle, who was getting his first AIL start since January, slotted the score.
In the second half Trinity had the breeze at their backs and pinned the home team deep in their own half. The students’ defence visibly stiffened and when wing forward Dave St Leger was driven over from close in by his captain Michael Courtney after some impressive continuity by the entire team it was ‘game on’.
Young Munster did get back up into the Trinity half to kick a penalty but the Dublin based university struck back after more heavy pressure on the host’s line. Freshman hooker Dan Sheehan was involved twice before executing a fine ‘out the back’ off load to James Fennelly who in turn fed Jack Fitzpatrick (playing his last game before going to New York to start his job) to score in the corner for a superb try.
Young Munster came back hard to try and rescue the game, but Trinity held firm with everybody putting bodies on the line. In the final 20 minutes Irish Clubs and Leinster A hooker Patrick Finlay came on to the team for his first game after shoulder surgery. He got two trademark turnovers, which totally stymied the home team’s hopes. The hosts missed a speculative kick at goal from a Penalty wide out, before Tommy Whittle iced the game with the last kick of the game, to make it 21-17.
This was a richly deserved win for Trinity who now take a three-week break from League action. They will host annual challenge matches v. Cambridge University in College Park next Saturday at 3pm before travelling over to play Oxford University the following Tuesday at 7pm on 17th October. The next league game is away to Buccaneers in Athlone on 28th October in Dubarry Park.
15; Michael Silvester, 14 Jack Fitzpatrick, 13 Michael Courtney, 12 Kyle Dixon, 11 Billy O’Hora, 10 Tommy Whittle, 9 Angus Lloyd, 1 James Bollard, 2 Dan Sheehan, 3 Joe Byrne, 4 Jack Burke, 5 Raef Tyrrell, 6 David St Leger, 7 Richard Dunne, 8 Niall O’Riordan.
Subs all used; 16 Patrick Finlay, 17 Darragh Higgins, 18 Reuben Pim, 19 Rowan Osborne, 20 James Fennelly
The 3rd XV lost 45-14 to Old Belvedere. The 4th XV have a game on Monday evening.
Trinity’s Women’s team went down on Wednesday to a very strong NUI Galway team 39-0 in their first SSI match.
The Senior 2nds and U20s teams all had byes this weekend.