With our senior squad enjoying a short end of season ‘Tour’ in Portugal last weekend, Old Crescent attention turned to our Under 20’s and our Under Age teams who were still very much in contention for honours and trophies.
Our Under 20 team played Ul Bohemians in Rosbrien on Tuesday evening in the semi final of the North Munster Under 20 Cup. Those who attended were treated to a feast of open and adventurous rugby that was a joy to watch. Crescent started aggressively and had the bigger UL Bohs team under the cosh in the opening ten minutes. This period of pressure took Crescent to the UL Bohs 22 mtr line from where our outhalf Val McDermott floated the most exquisite kick towards the sideline for our winger Stephen Hackett to run on to, win the contest for the ball in the air and score near the posts. You would not see better in professional rugby!
Conor Lenihan added the conversion and from the restart Crescent continued to force the pace, stealing several UL Bohs lineouts, and following another attack that brought Crescent to the visitor’s 22, in a brilliant individual effort, Val McDermott chipped a beautiful ball over the on rushing defence, caught his kick and beat a few despairing tackles to score under the posts. Conor again added the conversion to put Old Crescent 14 points clear in front at half time.
The second half was disrupted for almost ten minutes when two Old Crescent players had an unfortunate clash of heads when going for a high ball. Thankfully, they were both able to walk off the field after receiving medical attention from our President, Dr Michael O’Flynn. The ten minute stoppage and substitutions seemed to unsettle Old Crescent for a while and UL Bohs got in for a try which they failed to convert ten minutes into the second half.
That score seemed to energise UL Bohs and Old Crescent were on the back foot for long periods in the second half. However, our desperate defence held strong when UL Bohs threatened our line. On several occasions, we managed to rob the ball at critical moments and clear our lines.
We found it difficult to get out of our own half but eventually with about five minutes remaining we fought our way into the UL Bohs half and put the game out of reach with a superb try scored by Ian Clien. Conor Lehihan again added the conversion to bring the score to Old Crescent 21 UL Bohemians 5.
The icing was added to the cake with another brilliant individual effort by Val McDermott who broke through the tiring UL Bohs cover to score under the posts. Conor again added the conversion as the final whistle sounded. The final score Old Crescent 28 Ul Bohs 5.
A combined Old Crescent RFC/St Senan’s RFC Under 16 team took on Listowel RFC in the North Munster Under 16 Conference Final in Rosbrien last Wednesday evening. Listowel started the better with a penalty and two tries inside the first twenty minutes to put them 13 points clear. The home side fought back with a Mark McGarry penalty and a try by Mark Hickey either side of half time to bring the score to 8-13.
Both teams gave it everything in a very intense second half but a brilliant intercept try by substitute Timothy Duggan and a well worked try by Adam Shire gave Old Crescent/St Senan’s the advantage going into the final minutes. Four minutes from time, Timothy Duggan scored again to give Old Crescent RFC/St Senan’s RFC the victory and the trophy by 23 points to 13 in a very entertaining match.
Old Crescent Under 15’s took part in the inaugural Joe Joyce Memorial Trophy organised by Galway Corinthians RFC in Galway last weekend. The competition included 16 teams from all over Ireland so it was a tough test for our U15’s who had taken some impressive scalps already this season.
As the team was drawn in the “group of death” with Buccaneers, Clontarf and Tullow, a good start was essential, however, Old Crescent failed to ignite against an impressive Buccaneers team and paid the penalty going down 31-12. The pressure was really on to beat a Clontarf team that hadn’t been beaten in two seasons but Old Crescent hit them with everything they had from the kick off and scored two quick tries. Old Crescent played their best rugby of the season and had a deserved 17-12 lead coming into injury time but a series of poor referring decisions, including a very harsh sin binning, gave territory and advantage to Clontarf and with the last play of the game Clontarf scored a try which they converted to win the match.
The consensus from everyone present was that the better team lost and the bitter disappointed was compounded by the fact that it meant Old Crescent would contest the plate competition on the Sunday. A final pool game against Tullow was effectively a dead rubber but Old Crescent were ruthless and ran away 45-12 winners.
The plate competition included several strong teams but Old Crescent didn’t concede a single point in their march to victory. A strongly fancied Suttonians team were beaten 33-0 in the semi-final and a full strength and determined Tullow were a very strong test in the final but were defeated 15-0. Neither of the matches were as easy as the score lines might suggest but with Old Crescent playing with massive team spirit and huge belief neither team stood a chance.
After a season that promised so much but had not produced any silverware there was both relief and elation at finally winning a trophy. The added bonus for our Under 15’s was that they played excellent rugby, displayed a maturity beyond their years and fulfilled their true potential.
This coming Friday evening, our President’s and Awards Night, which will take place in the Clubhouse in Rosbrien 8pm. Tickets are €20 each and there will be a Monster BBQ with a pig on a spit, plus a live band and DJ till late. Some tickets are still available from Anthony O’Dwyer at 087-2214140.
The Annual General Meeting of Old Crescent RFC will be held in the Clubhouse on Wednesday 20th May 2015 at 8.00pm. Notices of motion must be given in writing to the Secretary on or before Monday, 11th of May 2015.