AIL – Old Wesley 42 Buccaneers 17
Old Wesley hosted Athlone side Buccaneers this weekend in AIL Div 1B, with the home team looking to build on what has been exciting form in 2024.
Wesley looked to play from the get-go when Eoin Monahan looked to put Sam Burns away on the wing – Burns was a threat from the first minute. It took until the 12th minute for Wesley to go over when Alex Molloy jinked through to inside 5 metres and after 2 more phases Ben Stephens fired the ball out to captain Reuben Pim to finish from close range. Eoin Monahan added the extras to put Wesley 7 points ahead. Wesley continued to turn the screw and 10 minutes later they were in for their second try when Fergus Jemphreys left an inside ball for Sam Burns to run onto and dot down under the posts, Monahan again converted to make it 14-0.
Wesley continued to play with high tempo which the away side struggled with on the 4G surface and 2 minutes later Wesley were in for their 3rd of the day when Cathal Kelly crashed over from close range. Buccaneers soon responded before the half was over when 2nd row Cian McCann scored to make it 21-7 going into half time.
However, after the break Wesley were relentless capitalising on a mistake by the Buccs back line, Alex Molloy stabbed the ball through to score yet again for Old Wesley this season. Eoin Monahan once again converting to make it 28-7 with 43 minutes gone. Wesley again, from the kick off, looked to play and hooker Howard Noonan found himself in space on the wing to make a 60 metre carry down the pitch just to fall short 2 metres from the line, support came in the form of Fergus Jemphreys who got over the line with the help of Cronan Gleeson. Monahan converted to make 35-7 with 47 minutes played.
Old Wesley, once again, didn’t wait for the invitation to attack from the kick off when back rower Will Fay galloped down the field to make over 50 metres for Wesley. Quick ruck ball meant Tom Larke could throw a long pass to Nathan Randles on the wing for Wesley to score their 6th of the day, this time Ian Cassidy added the extras.
With 3 tries scored in 10 minutes by the home side, Buccaneers got the opportunity to gather some momentum in the next quarter of the half when Cian McCann got over the line from a pass down the blindside to make it 42-12. Again, Buccs attacked the Wesley line and this time Charlie Ward scored from close range to narrow the score line to 42-17. And with that, the final whistle blew – a comprehensive performance from the home side who now climb towards play-off spots.
A short away trip to Blackrock RFC next week is set to be a game of most importance for both sides in the battle for promotion.
Scorers: Tries: Reuben Pim, Sam Burns, Cathal Kelly, Alex Molloy, Fergus Jemphrey, Nathan Randles; Cons: Eoin Monahan 5, Ian Cassidy
Team: Tom Larke; Nathan Randles, Alex Molloy, Fergus Jemphrey, Sam Burns; Eoin Monahan, Ben Stephens; Harry Noonan, Howard Noonan, Cronan Gleeson, Reuben Pim (capt), Shane Cawley, Cathal Kelly, Josh Pim, Will Fay. Replacements: Dan O’Connor, Sam Kenny, Liam O’Neill, Brian Short, Ian Cassidy, Eoin Murphy.