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Lansdowne J1 v UCD J1

Metro League Division 1

 45 – 5 


A fine performance was the order of the day for Lansdowne J1 team as they extended their winning  start to the season by beating UCD comprehensively in Belfield, and in so doing extended their winning run to three games.

This game emphasized that in some respects, this team is beginning to settle down as all the parts of the team performed to a good standard meaning the overall display was impressive and comprehensive. The game started with the Lansdowne eight dominating their student opponents and in fact the power of the scrum was well shown when Ronan Shaw opened the scoring in the first 10 minutes by touching down with the conversion missed thereafter.
There followed further good periods of play from Lansdowne and after 15 minutes the speedy full back, Rohan van der Akker came into the line and cut through the student’s defense to increase the score line to 12 -0 with a successful conversion from Tom Gavigan. UCD to their credit tried hard and mounted attacks of their own but a very resolute defensive line was maintained by Lansdowne. There was some fine tackles right across the line and some fine turnovers achieved by Stephen Callanan and Henry Godson to mention two of the forwards.
The fact that UCD had not replied on the scoreboard took away some of their confidence, and Lansdowne broke out and pressurized at the other end of the field leaving a pushover type try, this time scored by that fine player Darragh Murphy with the extras added by Gavigan pushing the score line out further to 19 – 0.

Approximately five minutes later the score line changed again with a further try again from the excellent Darragh Murphy, following good forward play, leaving the score line at 26 – 0. To their credit the home side rallied and tried very hard and from a fine break from their left winger and a chip over the top with a fortuitous bounce meant that they were able to register a try just before halftime which went unconverted and meant that the score at the break was 26 – 5.

The halftime team talk was an easy one for coach Conor Nugent, and he delivered the message more of the same to the team who were showing a lot more confidence in their play from the previous two matches they had played.

After the turn around it was offence from Lansdowne and you felt that if the students were going to mount any sort of meaningful comeback that they would have to be the first ones to score in the second-half. Which is not in fact what happened but rather fine work from scrum half Oisin Devitt led to him breaking through the defensive line and touching down to push the score line out to 31 – 5 with the conversion being missed.

There were changes on both sides, but it didn’t really change the path of the game which was dominated by the Lansdowne forwards leading to fine possession for a backline which was able to be on the front foot and line breaks were a plenty as a result. For the home side students, there were some brave tackling, and one could not fault their effort, but a lot of the time they were chasing shadows and their forward pack was retreating in the scrums leading to penalty infringements.

As the game moved into the last quarter again after some fine work by the Lansdowne backs it was left to the speedy Cian Moloney to further increase the scoreline which was added to by Gavigan. The home side tried hard to register a further score and reduce their deficit, and by throwing caution to the wind it meant that they spilled possession while going forward and it was from one of these pieces of play that the ball fell into the hand of Rohan van der Akker, who outpaced the opponent defensive line and ran from just inside his half to dot down under the posts with Gavigan finishing the match with a successful conversion meaning that the final score was 45 – 5.


There were good performances this week from the team as a whole, and mention must be made of the good work of Brian Barron, Tom Gavigan and Sean Dunne, Conor McMenanin in the forwards, with a good display also from Charlie McSweeney off the bench.

Seven tries to one meant a bonus point, and a very satisfying afternoon for the Lansdowne coaching staff and team, on what was a beautiful afternoon for rugby in Belfield on a top class artificial surface which has been opened there. This game over, the first three games have now been played and the J1’s stand in second place in the table behind the pacesetters Old Wesley who themselves had a good win over Terenure. The next outing for the J1s will be a home headquarters game against old Belvedere, which is due to take place on Sunday the 15th of October at 3:00 PM.

Match Report – John Kilroy


1 Seán Dunne
2 Henry Godson
3 Ronan Shaw
4 Conor McMenamin
5 Sean Walsh
6 Stephen Walshe
7 Stephen Callinan
8 Darragh Murphy
9 Eadbhard O’Callaghan
10 Tom Gavigan
11 Cian Moloney
12 Brian Barron
13 Rohan van den Akker
14 Oisin Devitt
15 Patrick Burke
16 Evan Downey
17 Charlie McSweeney
18 Aidan Long
19 Robert Kidney
20 Oscar O’Brien

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