All Ireland League – Buccaneers 9 Old Wesley 3
Following a tough home loss to Blackrock College RFC last week, Old Wesley were on the road to Athlone as they took on Buccaneers RFC.
The conditions and opening exchanges indicated that the game would be a forward dominated affair. With a strong win behind the home side, they took the lead early through the boot of out half Mickey Hanley. Wesley from the restart looked to attack, with Kieran O’Shea, Cathal Kelly and Billy Corrigan all making strong carries into the Buccs half. The scrum was a pivotal area of the game, with Buccaneers winning 3 scrum penalties in a row, and with a wind behind their back made their way into the Wesley half, again a penalty by Mickey Hanley meant Wesley found themselves further behind.
Wesley looked to the line-out for parity in the forwards and saw their maul look like a potential weapon for them, however errors led to more scrums and more penalties for the home-side.
Buccs opted for the posts again, this time from 60 metres out, centre Stevie Mannion stepped up put the home side 9 points clear. Wesley were visually frustrated and looked to score before half time. With the maul looking like their best weapon, Wesley forced 2 yellow cards but unfortunately let Buccs off the hook with an error in the final minute of the half. 9-0
Wesley looked to use the 2 man advantage in the early exchanges of the 2nd half. Great interplay between Billy Corrigan and Tom Larke saw Wesley build momentum but Buccaneers had the answers. Harry Noonan was sent to the bin soon after again for issues at the scrum.
Old Wesley again worked hard to get scoring opportunities but errors at the line-out left them wanting. Eoin Monohan elected to go for the posts to put Wesley within 7 and duly did. 9-3. Opportunities once again came for Wesley but a stolen 5m line-out at the death meant the home side would take the glory.
A tough away day for the Donnybrook side who play UCC next on December 2nd at home, where they will hope to improve their current form.