Under 20 Premiership 1 – Old Wesley 10 UCD 61
On a perfect autumnal afternoon for running rugby in Energia Park, Donnybrook, the Old Wesley u20s were given a tough lesson from UCD in a game that saw the visitors score 9 tries to the home teams 2 tries. Credit to the Old Wesley players to a man they gave it their all and even as the relentless wave of UCD play came at them, the never shirked the job to hand, that said they were punch drunk by the final whistle.
To put this into perspective there may never be a better team performance from UCD who gave a masterclass all over the pitch from 1 to 23 with strength in depth and skills to beat the band. Aided by their u20 internationals present and certainly future as well as a class Kiwi at flanker this possibly was the strongest ever u20 team that has played Prem 1 in recent years and full credit to the display that they put on throughout the 80 minutes.
To give some credit to the home team that the 2 scores they managed from Robbie Browne and Adam Strong were very well taken. The 1st try in particular showed that when Wesley controlled the set piece and worked the phases that when we had a penalty advantage in the opposition 22, a very clever left footed chip by outhalf Eoin Quinn put Robbie Browne clear to touch down mid-way through the 1st half. The second try at the same time in the second half again came from sustained pressure on the opposition line and power play from the pack to set up a platform to allow Adam Strong crash over for a second score for the home team. Old Wesley were able to introduce two debutants to the team with both Hugh Grant and Josh D’Alton all getting valuable pitch time for the first time this season.
Apart from these cameos by the home team the UCD team controlled every facet of the game and while it was a tough lesson for Old Wesley to take it will be looked at as one of the finest u20 performances from any team and that should be applauded.
With no game next week and the return to fitness of some of the key players from the u20 squad the game in 2 weeks in Clontarf will give the lads an opportunity to regroup and set about avenging this defeat in the best possible manner.