AIL – Old Belvedere 3 Old Wesley 20
Old Wesley’s first home game of 2024 saw them visit Old Belvedere in Ollie Campbell Park.
The game was scoreless for the first 15 minutes as both teams looked to feel each other out. David Wilkinson opened the scoring with a penalty from the halfway to put the home side ahead. The first half was a heavy and physical encounter which saw Wesley take the upper hand in the contact zone. Eventually, Old Wesley forced penalties from Belvedere and opted for the corner which saw Stephen Smyth go over from a maul-drive. Eoin Monahan converted the extras, and the visitors went into the break 7-3 ahead.
The fun did not stop at halftime as Old Belvedere and Old Wesley’s under ten girls’ team once again took to the field to keep the crowd entertained – a return of the fixture before Christmas!
Old Welsey came out the blocks early in the second half and looked to attack Old Belvo’s line, who were now struggling with injuries and the physicality Wesley were bringing. Eoin Monahan added 2 penalties from the halfway line to put Wesley 13-3 ahead with just over 30 minutes to go. Soon after Ian Cassidy and Keith Kavanagh entered the fray for Monahan and Ben Stephens to change the half backs as Wesley turned the screw.
Old Wesley extended their lead when Alex Molloy danced through the Old Belvedere defence from 40 metres out, with Ian Cassidy converting the extras to put the visitors 20-3 ahead with 10 to go. Old Belvedere had opportunities to add to their scoreline, but Wesley had all the answers in defence, with Sam Kenny, Cathal Kelly and captain Reuben Pim leading the defensive effort in the dying minutes of the game as Belvedere came up short each time.
Old Wesley currently lie 7th in a very tight table, with just 9 points separating the 2nd and 8th place teams. We look forward to welcoming 3rd placed Highfield next weekend in Donnybrook.
Old Wesley Scorers: Tries: Stephen Smyth, Alex Molloy; Cons: Eoin Monahan, Ian Cassidy; Pens: Eoin Monahan 2
Team: Tom Larke; Nathan Randles, Alex Molloy, Eoin Deegan, Sam Burns; Eoin Monahan, Ben Stephens; Harry Noonan, Stephen Smyth, Cronan Gleeson, Reuben Pim (capt), David Motyer, Cathal Kelly, Josh Pim, Will Fay. Replacements: Howard Noonan, Sam Kenny, Josh O’Hare, Ian Cassidy, Keith Kavanagh, Fergus Jemphrey.