J1 21 Dublin University 14

Metro League – Division 1

A beautiful sun drenched October afternoon greeted the J1 team as they took to the field for their home league encounter against Dublin University. Their opponents have had a very bright start to the season, having won both of their league games to date, and also have been victorious in the Metropolitan cup final recently, the event having been carried forward from last season due to Covid so there was no doubting they would present a stern challenge to the home team.

That said as the game commenced Lansdowne rose to the challenge and struck first with a fine try from hooker Paddy Nixon following a defence cutting break from Michael Heaney. The try went unconverted but again the home side went on the front foot and fine work by the Lansdowne eight led to penalties giving good field position and resulting again in a fine try from open play by Lock Daniel Murphy who burst through the defence close to the line to touch down. The try was converted by David Moran, leaving the score line at 12 – 0. There followed further good team play from the home side and touch finding kicks both from out half Moran and full back Tim Foley, which yielded further penalties, and in so doing, enabled Moran to convert three penalty chances to keep the score board ticking over and pushing out the lead to 21-0 at half time. This represented a fine performance by the team albeit assisted by the prevailing wind conditions.

The second half followed and again the home side, by playing the conditions, had much of the possession to ensure the score stayed the same for the opening 20 minutes of the second half. However with Trinity trying to open up the game to create chances, the home side handed them an opening when an intercept led to the visitors first try with the extras following leaving the score line at 21 – 7. Again from the restart, the visitors grabbed the lifeline they had been given and managed to secure territorial advantage as the half went on. The home defence was resolute but as the minutes went by and having secured good field position following multiple phases of pressure Trinity crashed through the defence to secure their second try leaving the score line at 21 – 14 with under 10 minutes to go. What had seemed a comfortable afternoon for the home team suddenly had become a more edgy affair but they knuckled down and limited the oppositions opportunities leading to the game coming to a conclusion with the home side on the offensive.

In summary, a fine win for the home side and good news to cheer up Philip Donnellan coach following a procedure he had the previous week. Well done to both sides on providing an entertaining game played in good spirit on a beautiful afternoon for rugby and for the crowd that attended at headquarters.


Match report : John Kilroy