Lansdowne 31 Terenure 6
History was made last night when Lansdowne U17s not alone won the Metro Cup for the first time at U17 level, but also achieved a unique double, after winning the Schools/Youth League the week before.
Having battled it out against a talented Terenure XV in the League final, Lansdowne came up against the Lakelands outfit again in the Metro in front of a packed house on the back pitch in Lansdowne Rd.
Lansdowne started well and took the game straight to Terenure who were proving to be typically resilient in defence. Lansdowne's indiscipline gave Terenure a penalty chance which they converted to take the lead after 10 minutes. From the restart Lansdowne attacked and Richard Dunne broke off the blind side of a ruck in the 'Nure 22 and showed good footwork to keep out of touch and go over in the corner to score the opening try for Lansdowne.
Alex Caslin, having missed an earlier penalty, kicked a marvellous conversion to give Lansdowne a 7-3 lead. As with the League final they game was being dictated by both defences. Lansdowne were tackling well and Terenure were winning the breakdowns.
At one breakdown Lansdowne were again pinged and Terenure converted the penalty to narrow the score to 7-6. The game was evenly balanced as half time approached when Lansdowne were awarded a penalty by the very competent referee Susan Carty which Alex Caslin converted to make it 10-6. From the restart, Lansdowne were awarded a penalty which Adam Browne neatly kicked into the corner. After a maul and series of rucks off the lineout the ball was spun wide and Conor Farrell scored to the right of the posts. Again Alex Caslin converted well. Half Time and Lansdowne were 17-6 ahead.
True to their form, Terenure were not giving in easily and repeatedly attacked Lansdowne for the first 15 mins of the 2nd half, but excellent defence by Lansdowne negated any threat. Lansdowne were now winning the collisions with Brian McGettigan being prominent. Harry Brennan pirouetted out into space on a couple of occasions but without support. Eventually a brilliant break out by Thomas Costello, Lansdowne kicked behind the Nure defence and found touch in the corner. Lansdowne then stole the lineout throw and Richard Dunne, who himself was having a stormer of a game, galloped over in the corner to score. Another wonderful conversion from Alex Caslin gave Lansdowne a 24-6 lead.
Lansdowne were well in control now and were carrying the ball well, with Alex McEvoy & Lorcan Rooney especially running good lines. After emptying the bench Lansdowne finished off a great display when Rob Kelly ran a quick tapped penalty and from the ensuing breakdown Adam Browne went down the bye line at pace on a typical solo effort to score in the corner. This time Jack Mulcahy converted another marvellous conversion.
A fantastic win for the U17s who only came together last Sept. Hard luck to Terenure having got to three finals but losing out in all. Maybe destiny will bring both teams in the McCorry Cup final in 2017??
Man of the match - The whole squad
You can check out the entire Flickr set of photos here.
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