Lisburn Earn A Bonus Point Despite Defeat: Lisburn 1st XV 22 – 27 CIYMS 1st XV & Lisburn III XV See Off Instonians 33-12

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At Blaris last Saturday the Corus sponsored Lisburn lost out to a good CIYMS team by just one score from the seven tries on offer. A hand injury to outhalf Alistair Finlay in the previous game against Belfast High School FP left an opening for Ryan Hill to step up from the seconds and he produced a good performance at the higher level, contributing two conversions and a penalty with the boot.

CIYMS, who are unbeaten in the league so far, attacked from the start and were 0-7 up after just ten minutes when from a five metre scrum they moved the ball smartly to their centre who darted in without giving the Lisburn defence any opportunity to stop him. This try was converted and CI kept up the pressure to make it 0-12 ten minutes later when their strong running backs once again breached the home defence to score. Lisburn were, however, coming to terms with the frantic pace of the game and in a neat move on 25 minutes they broke out with a fine try from winger Adam Melville.
Photos on slideshow of Lisburn RFC v CIYMS RFC, courtesy of Tom Porter Photography. CLICK HERE. Should anyone require a high resolution image simply contact Tom on 07740 676076
That was the way the scoreline stayed for the rest of the half and indeed well into the second period when CIYMS put continuous pressure on the Lisburn defence to score two more tries, one of which was converted, thus giving themselves a valuable bonus point. It was at this stage that Lisburn started to play the type of rugby that we know they are capable of and immediately winger Melville had struck again with another superb try, handing off numerous would-be tacklers in the process. The Ryan Hill conversion reduced the leeway to 14-24. Within minutes, with the momentum now firmly with Lisburn, the backline started to run the ball from all parts of the pitch as the pack laid on a plentiful supply of good, go forward possession. Melville used his speed and strength again to complete his hat trick of tries and bring the score to 19 – 24 and it looked as if the big support for both teams were in for a grande finale. The two kickers on either team immediately swapped penalties to bring up 22-27 and with just a few minutes remaining it looked as if Lisburn might just pull the match out of the fire. They pressed hard but just failed to get that vital score in the closing phases, unlike the match against the same opponents last season when once again it was that man Melville who won the game for Lisburn in injury time.
Lisburn will take the positives from this display but will regret the errors which led to four opposition tries. Coaches Bruce Cornelius and Mark Crothers will have gleaned much from a review of the play and it will be back to the training park to iron out the wrinkles in defence. Next Saturday the first XV have a free date while the 2s and 3s are away to Banbridge 3s and Coleraine 3s respectively.

Lisburn 3rd XV See Off Instonians
Lisburn 3rd XV 33 – Instonians 4th XV 12

Lisburn 3rd XV, playing with their customary brand of exciting back play saw off a competent Instonians 4th XV to continue their good form. Having already beaten Belfast Harlequins 3s, Belfast High School FP 2s and drawn with Ballynahinch 5s, the Lisburn 3rd XV were again in good form under the Blaris lights in mid week. A Simon Ayres penalty started the scoring on ten minutes and with the backs stretching their legs at every opportunity, winger Graham Squirrell soon found himself in space. Despite being cornered, he managed to find his supporting prop Gareth Jeffreys and the big man reached out over the line to score. Number 8, Blood, was next on the score sheet when he gained possession from a lineout on the 22 metre line and dashed through the opposition ranks to ground the ball near the posts. The Ayres conversion made it 15-0. Just before the interval Squirrell scored again when a quick follow up of a failed penalty attempt allowed him to fall on the loose ball for a rarely seen try of this nature and at the interval Lisburn were in a comfortable lead of 20 points to nil.
After the break, Ayres added a further penalty before Instonians finally came to terms with the game. A deserved try in the corner narrowed the scoreline but it was only temporary as the Lisburn centres reciprocated in kind just minutes later, thanks to the quick hands of out half St John. Instonians scored again but approaching the final whistle Lisburn capped a fine display with another score to make the final tally 33 points to 12. Fullback and Captain, Ross Perkins, now has his team regularly producing the goods and are a joy to watch from the touchline. The exciting brand of rugby that they play is helping to develop some of the younger players in the club and Chris Jones, Graham Squirrell and Stephen John are good examples of this.

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