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Metro League Division 5

CYM  6 – 27 Lansdowne FC

After what Captain Rob Timlin described as some “abject” performances against CYM in recent years, memories were still raw for enough of the members of this group for them to approach this game with grim and steely determination. Rob especially. And though the first 20 minutes looked shakey, when we hit our stride, we put those memories far behind us and ran in convincing and bonus point winners in the end.

The game opened on the cold and windswept pitch in Terenure with both sides playing cagey rugby and 20 minutes passed before the score board was called to action as the CYM outhalf took his penalty opportunity well for a 3 – 0 lead.  That was the wake up call we needed and from then on our own 10, Rob Troy kicked well from the hands to keep the home team pinned down for most of the second quarter. We attacked their line relentlessly with short, narrow balls coming in succession, and leading to several penalties from the home side.  And it was fired up captain Rob Timlin, leading from the front as he did all day, that took the penalty quickly and forced his way over the line for our first try, just before half time. Rob converted and we went into the break 3 – 8 up and looking the better side already.

CYM started the second half with another well taken penalty to narrow the gap, but that was as good as it got for them all day, in truth. By now our boys were fully pumped and primed and started slowly but surely putting the hosts to the sword. First it was the scrums.  After getting pushed around a little in the early encounters, our pack took total control in the second half. Notable scrummaging performances came from veteran props Ludo Amblard and Cathal McNamara, ably held together by second rows Even Fenton and newcomer Adam Kennedy.

Even though we were dominant in the scrums, it obviously took some effort, and a voice was overheard to say to the captain, “Jesus Timlin, next time we get a choice, take the lineout!”

And if our scrums were strong, our lineouts were sublime.  Hooker Rory O’Donnell threw the darts like Phil Taylor on the “Oche”, and his target was the deceptively graceful in flight, Even “Fuzz” Fenton.

Confident in our set play dominance, we started to open up our loose play in the third quarter, picking holes in the CYM defence and setting the scene for the “coup de grace”. The first blow came when Cathal McNamara displayed bewildering foot work and tenacity to finish off several phases with a 10 meter break to the line. Rob topped off the conversion and it was 6 – 15.

But it wasn’t all about the forwards. Having defended stoutly all day, centres Thibault Fravel and Josh Healy standing out, it was the backs’ turn now to attack.  Phase after phase, scrum half Conor Cleary kept the line moving swiftly and eventually it was full back Alex Dillon that finished off a flowing move with a try in the corner. 6 – 20 with less than 10 minutes left to play.

The final blow came when Dillon, having moved into 9 from 15, took the ball from the back of the scrum on the 10 meter line and scythed through one of the now several gaps being left by the exhausted CYM defence. Rob did the honours and the final whistle blew. Full time and a fitting score line: 6 – 27.

Congratulations and a warm welcome to Rory O’Kennedy, Dave Kavanagh, Adam Kennedy, Alexis Pavier, Josh Healy & Dillon McAuliffe (albeit cut short through injury) on their debuts for the club too.

Match Report: Brian Whelan


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