Leinster Senior Schools Cup – Quarter Final: CLONGOWES WOOD COLLEGE 34 CASTLEKNOCK COLLEGE 8
The bookies had made Clongowes strong favourites for this one, and so it came to pass, as they ran out comfortable winners 34-8 over a gallant Castleknock in this quarter-final clash at Donnybrook.
Castleknock, with Dublin Minor football star Eoghan Quinn at full back started well, and deservedly took the lead from a penalty, following a great move in which winger Michael Mellett almost got through for a try, in the fourth minute.
Clongowes had their own scoring opportunites but Conor Mahony missed three penalty kicks in the opening 20 minutes.At that stage Castleknock had been very impressive and aggressive especially in defence, but it was obvious that the Clane side were getting over their initial nerves so it came as no surprise when hooker Bryan Byrne powered over for a try after 27 minutes with Mahony on target this time.Another Clongowes try minutes later when Sebastien Fromm (who was injured in the move) made a great break, passing to Max McFarland who touched down on the half hour mark. O’Mahony duly converted but alas Fromm departed the field of play due to his injury. An O’Mahony penalty minutes later put Clongowes 17-3 ahead at the break.
Captain and prop Edward Byrne looked in great form and led his side well despite the early hiccups so no surprise when Clongowes went further ahead. Stephen Kealan touched down after another great Bryan Byrne break . O’Mahony duly converted.
Scrum half Conor McQuaid was also in impressive form for Clongowes making some lovely breaks. Next up was a try from Conor Mahony though he missed the conversion himself. By now the game was well and truly beyond Castleknock’s reach and it simply a matter of how much
Clongowes would win by. 29-3 at this point.
With little more than five minutes left on the clock it was the turn of left winger, Niall Rhatigan to get a try. No conversion this time either and that proved to be the final score from Clongowes. Castleknock though should be given credit for never giving up and it was no more than they deserved when Eoghan Quinn finished off an excellent move for the game’s final score. Certainly Castleknock came with the intention of fighting hard from start to finish but in truth they were outplayed when it mattered most. On their form for three quarters of this game Clongowes will be extremely difficult to beat this year especially if the Byrne twins continue to show the great form that they did today.