Pres have double in their sights as juniors take on Ardscoil Rís

The Mardyke have already bagged the senior cup and now they're looking for a successful defence of their junior crown
Pres have double in their sights as juniors take on Ardscoil Rís

Presentation Brothers College's Cormac Bohan races clear to score a try against Rockwell College in the Pinergy Munster Schools Junior Cup at Musgrave Park. Picture: Denis Minihane.

PBC attempt to complete a Munster Schools Cup double for the first time since 2007, when they meet Ardscoil Ris in the junior final at Thomond Park, today, at 2pm.

The Cork school netted the senior trophy with last week’s decisive win over neighbours CBC in the decider just as they did 16 years ago with a 13-3 success before adding the junior, when defeating Castletroy College 11-3 in the final.

Pres are the defending champions following their win over Christians in 2022 and go in search of their 31st title while Ardscoil are looking to collect just their third having been triumphant in 2003 and 2005.

The teams met in the first game in qualifying at the start of October and it finished with a narrow 8-7 victory for Pres, who topped the group with a reward of playing just twice en route to the final while their Limerick opponents played a game more.

Pres have strong links to the class of 2022. Tight-head prop Fionn O’Sullivan is the lone survivor who started last season but scrum-half and captain Frankie Og Sheahan, son of the former Munster and Ireland hooker of the same name, prop Cathal Bruhn and second-row Diarmuid Sheehy were part of the squad.

Pres reached the final in contrasting style, opening with a 27-14 win over Rockwell College on the Astro pitch at Musgrave Park with flanker Cormac Bohan crossing for two of their four tries and there was one each for O’Sullivan and number 8 Tom Murray. Centre Daniel Murphy kicked a couple of conversions and a penalty.

But, the holders appeared to be exiting the competition at the semi-final stage after St Munchin’s jumped 17-0 in front early in the second-half and should really have been out of sight only to cough up plenty of other scoring opportunities.

Yet, in the space of 10 extraordinary minutes the champions turned the game on its head crossing for three converted tries to stun the Limerick side, who couldn’t muster a response as Pres stormed to a 21-17 victory.

O’Sullivan’s power with ball in hand featured prominently, kick-starting the fight back with the first try after 40 minutes before replacement Bobby O’Callaghan added a second five, minutes later, and then O’Sullivan barged through for the winner with Murphy, coolly, converting all three.

Ardscoil swept 23 points in front against Castletroy in their semi-final following tries from full-back Frank Sheehan-Williams, right wing Daniel O’Connell and second-row Lloyd Costello. Out-half James Butler converted one as well as kicking two penalties.

But, in keeping with a season which has shown no lead is safe, Castletroy hit back with 17 points of their own and were in a promising position in the final play only to fumble the ball, leaving Ardscoil breathe a huge sigh of relief at the final whistle. 

Earlier, Ardscoil opened with a 24-5 win over Glenstal Abbey before defeating Rockwell 17-12.

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