Clonakilty win the South Munster U18 league title after a big win over Kanturk

Clonakilty win the South Munster U18 league title after a big win over Kanturk

The Clonakilty rugby team and mentors after winning the Under 18 League title

Clonakilty 29

Kanturk 10

CLONAKILTY bridged an eight-year gap as they defeated Kanturk to claim the South Munster Under 18 League title in last Sunday’s decider at Curaheen Road.

On a day when conditions favoured open running rugby, both sides looked to keep things tight in a game in which the West Cork side were on top for lengthy stages. 

Clonakilty had to withstand a late rally, which yielded two tries for Kanturk.

The West Cork side had Kanturk on the back foot from the kick-off as Ciaran McCarthy, Paul Murphy and Conor Ryan presented the Duhallow side with problems in the loose. 

This pressure was rewarded with a penalty, which Eoin Downey converted from outside the Kanturk 22 in the seventh minute.

Clonakilty were back on the scoresheet in the 20th minute when Tyler Abbey-Henning dived over in the corner following a ruck inside the Kanturk 22. Downey converted from a difficult angle.

Kanturk had their moments approaching the break, but a combination of sloppy passing and a missed penalty were to prove costly as Clonakilty led 10-0 at half-time.

With the elements in their favour for the second half, Clonakilty continued to lay siege to the Duhallow side’s line. 

Kanturk tightened up at the back as Tadhg Fitzmaurice made some relieving clearances and Brian O’Sullivan pulled off a series of try-saving tackles. Set-piece infringements in this period also contributed to the West Cork side’s undoing.

Clonakilty increased their lead in the 46th minute when counter-rucking in the middle of the park set up Ryan for their second try, which Downey converted.

Kanturk looked to run the ball entering the final quarter as Brian O’Sullivan and Kajus Goberis embarked on some surging runs out of defence, but the West Cork side kept their line intact as Luke McCarthy was putting in some big hits.

Abbey-Henning scored his second try in the 54th minute, following a ruck in the middle of the park and Downey added his third conversion.

Jack O’Riordan was credited with a pushover try for Kanturk from a driving maul, following a penalty, which they opted to run from the Clonakilty 22.

Kanturk were exposed at the back as Jim Twomey scored Clonakilty’s fourth try following a lineout on the Duhallow side’s 22.

Jack McCarthy scored Kanturk’s second try following a five-metre penalty deep in stoppage time.

Scorers for Clonakilty: Tyler Abbey-Henning 2 tries; Eoin Downey 3 cons, pen; Conor Ryan, Jim Twomey tries.

Kanturk: Jack O’Riordan, Jack McCarthy tries.

Clonakilty: Adam Crawford; Tyler Abbey-Henning, Jim Twomey, Luke McCarthy, Patrick McCarthy; Eoin Downey, Finian Neville; Gearoid O’Donovan, Will Blackburn, Ciaran McCarthy; Alan O’Driscoll, Michael Deegan; Thomas O’Donovan, Paul Murphy, Conor Ryan.

Replacements: Eoin Murphy, Adam Asare, Donnacha Walsh, Aleksei Binzar, Ross O’Donovan, Ben Reilly, Rory White, Ryan O’Leary.

Kanturk: Tadhg Fitzmaurice; Ethan Hourigan, Brian O’Sullivan, Kajus Goberis, Jack Harrington; Matthew Hooton, Sean O’Riordan; Jack O’Riordan, Joshua Drumm, Joe McAuliffe; Daragh Breen, Gary McAuliffe; Adam Watson, Dylan Moynihan, Michael Lane.

Replacements: Gearoid O’Sullivan, Jack McCarthy.

Referee: Mossie Keith (MAR).

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