Enniskillen RFC Notes: I XV 19 v Ballymena RFC II XV 37: Powerade Towns Cup Semi Final 2012

3 minutes, 59 seconds Read

Enniskillen entertained a quality Ballymena side at Mullaghmeen in the semi-final of the Towns Cup and despite an excellent effort fell short in the dying minutes.

Ballymena started the game stronger and run the ball at ‘Skins, who were being made to work hard, and went 3 – 0 up when ‘Skins conceded a soft penalty having secured turnover ball. ‘Skins did hit back immediately but Tiernan Daly scuffed his first kick wide.

After seventeen minutes Ballymena doubled their lead when a flowing move between the two “22”s ended with another penalty award to the visitors and the writing looked on the wall for the hosts four minutes later when a similar sweeping move ended with a try wide on the visitors’ left wing.

Faced with an 11 point deficit ‘Skins then gave themselves a lifeline. A great break in midfield by Gavin Parke saw him break three tackles and as he was being dragged to ground a few yards short of the line, Mattie Maguire was on hand to take the offload and cross for the try. Daly was successful with the conversion and the visitors lead had been cut to 7 – 11.

Having got themselves back into the game ‘Skins then did what they least would have wanted, conceding possession from the restart that led to another penalty. This time the kick was put into the corner and the Ballymena back drove over for another unconverted try, 7 – 16.

With barely a minute to the break ‘Skins again were on the scoresheet. A cleanly won lineout 35 yards from the visitors’ line set up an attack and it was that man Parke who again made the break and again he was dragged to ground just short of the line. The ball was well presented and scrumhalf Ricky Connor fed the impressive Daly who dived in at the corner for a fine try. Daly couldn’t add the extras and the score was now 12 – 16.

However once again ‘Skins conceded possession from the restart kick and some poor attempted tackling saw Ballymena waltz through the middle for a converted try under the posts to leave the halftime score at 12 – 23, but it could have been so much better. ‘Skins had showed their ability to carry and keep the ball alive with Felix Quigley showing his pace out wide on more than one occasion, with David Taylor carrying the ball well, making the hard yards in the trenches.

The second half was a thrust and counter thrust affair for half an hour as defences remained on top, despite some nice running from Nigel Johnston from fullback, young Daly and Maguire, showing some touches of his undoubted class. Among the forwards David Buchanan showed his running ability alongside Taylor in a rejigged second row as Eddie Roofe joined Parke as the main scavengers in the loose. There was nothing between the sides and even when firstly ‘Skins lost Richard Beatty to a yellow card after twenty-six minutes and then Ballymena lost their replacement flanker on thirty-three, also to a yellow card, the scoreboard remained unchallenged for thirty-five minutes.

It was the influential Daly, who then set up another ‘Skins foray into the Ballymena “22”, drawing much praise from the visiting coaching staff. From the penalty that saw the visitors reduced to fourteen, ‘Skins pushed the ball into the corner and having secured the lineout patiently went through three phases before Jamie Johnston cut a nice angle off a delayed pop pass from Connor to ghost in for a try, which Daly duly converted.

With a 19 – 23 scoreline ‘Skins went into the last four minutes on a high, but as had been the case throughout found it difficult to break the stubborn and well drilled Ballymena defence. Then the wheels came off the Enniskillen bandwagon in a crazy final two minutes.

Having again conceded a penalty ‘Skins faced another Ballymena lineout five metres out and despite holding the initial drive Ballymena’s impressive blindside flanker broke from the tail of the maul to cruise in for a converted try, 19 – 30.

‘Skins gamefully continued to carry the ball to the visitors but an intercepted pass on halfway was returned for a converted try to seal the victory for the visitors at 19 – 37.

A final scoreline that flattered the visitors but none the less a deserved victory. ‘Skins were guilty of making the game too easy for Ballymena as they conceded needless penalties at crucial times, especially immediately after having scored themselves. All in all a disappointing result but a game in which ‘Skins showed that for periods they can compete with opposition of this quality.

Team: Alan Ferguson (Richard Beatty), Johnny Wright (Michael Cadden), Felix Quigley, David Taylor, Hazlitt Brian (Eddie Roofe), David Buchanan, Gavin Parke, Jamie Johnston, Ricky Connor, James McIntyre, Tiernan Daly, Mark Ross (Michael Law), Mattie Maguire, Andrew Dixon, Nigel Johnston. Sub not used: Trevor Whitaker.

Arab online casinos on ازينو على الانترنت with arab casino games.

Similar Posts