Carlow reached the quarter-finals of the 2022 Provincial Towns Cup with a good away win against Navan on Sunday. The visitors won by 16 points to nil but it could have been more given their dominance for most of the game.
Carlow attacked from the off-putting pressure on the Navan try line. Navan conceded a penalty in the 4th minute which was slotted home by Carlow’s Richard Whyte.
Carlow continued to dominate possession and territory. Conor Treacy broke free and his charge up the field looked like try time but the Navan defence scrambled back to pull him down.
Three times in this half Carlow ignored kickable penalties but the mauls from the corner lineouts failed to make it over the try line. The Navan defence was being stretched but not pierced in this first half.
And in the 26th minute when Carlow was awarded another kickable penalty Richard Whyte tapped it over.
This six nil scoreline for the visitors at the interval continued unchanged for the first 17 minutes of the second period despite Carlow’s being parked around the home side’s 22-metre line.
For most of the time, the Oakpark side was playing intelligent cup rugby with full-back Richard Whyte time and again using the wind to keep the home side pinned back. But the home defence continued to frustrate the visitors.
Eventually, the deadlock was broken when Richard Whyte scored with a dropkick that went in off a post. At 9 nil this put the visitors more than a converted score in front.
Thirty minutes into the second half came the games only try. Again it was set up by the skill of Richard Whyte. Taking the ball on the short side of a ruck Whyte put through a grubber kick which forced the defence into touch in the corner.
From the lineout, Carlow mauled their way over the line with Conor Treacy getting the touchdown. Whyte added the tricky conversion.
This was really game over as Navan never looked like scoring a try and any penalties they were awarded were nearer the home rather the opposition posts.
Speaking after the visitor’s victory Carlow coach Corey Carty said that Navan’s lack of scoring potential was because of the Carlow defence. “Our defence today was outstanding. We didn’t let Navan play.”
Before the game, the Carlow management was apprehensive about facing the heavy Navan pack. Between Covid and injury Carlow was without 3 to 4 of their 1st choice front five.
However back row players Owen Edgehill and Conor Treacy were moved from the back of the scrum, Cian Clarke came from the seconds to anchor the scrum at tighthead. In the event, Carlow dominated the line outs and held their own in the scrums even when subs Evan Gordon and John Farrell came on.
If there was a Man of the Match going to be awarded it would have gone to Carlow’s number 15 Richard Whyte with Wes Shirley also a contender because of his line out catching and stealing.
The Edgehill cousins Owen and Rhys and John Murphy were strong and steadfast tacklers.
Richard Whyte, Sam Cullen, David McDermott, Dan Crotty, Caomhan Brennan Alan Owens, Jeff McDermott, Owen Edgehill, Conal Slater, Cian Clarke, Wes Shirley, Capt, Conor Treacy, Rhys Edgehill, Johnny Murphy., Paddy Mackey
Subs: Evan Gordon, John Farrell, Conor Moore, Isaac Daly. Johnny Crossley
Shane Walsh, Sean Walshe, William McAleese, Harry Hester, Mark Coen, Keelan Murphy, Cillian Farrell, Ronan Hannon, Gary Faulkner, Leigh Jackson, Ian Richard, Ciaran O Reilly, Ronan Meegan, Evan Gordon, Andrew Beggy.
Subs: David Brady, Eoin O Reilly, Jack Dickson, Charles Johnston, Gavan Brady
Kilkenny march on in Towns Cup
Kilkenny is into the next round of the Towns Cup after a 20-34 win over Edenderry at the weekend.
Kilkenny trailed at halftime by 20-17 but got a converted try at the start of the second half to take the lead 20-24.
The local lads crossed the whitewash again and converted to bring it to 20-31, and a penalty for Kilkenny then put the cherry on top.
Tullow exit the Towns Cup
The men in maroon and white lost narrowly to Dundalk in the Towns Cup at the weekend on a final score of 31-27.
Paul Canavan opened the scoring for Tullow with a penalty however Dundalk went over for a try to bring the game to 3-7.
Dundalk though had two players yellow carded in quick succession and Tullow took full advantage of the extra men with William (Hollow) O’Brien getting a try with Paul Canavan getting the extras to bring the game to 10-7 and that’s how it was at halftime.
Dundalk managed to draw themselves level after receiving a penalty however Paul Canavan was excellent with the boot again and kick a Tullow penalty to put them up 13-10.
Tullow took control then and Martin Cole crossed the white line with Canavan kicking the conversion to give them a 10 point margin.
William (Hollow) O’Brien got his second try of the day then and it was converted, giving Tullow a comfortable 27-10 lead.
However, Dundalk fought back and got over for the try and conversion to bring it back to a 10 point game, frustration got the better of Tullow then and they had a man yellow carded.
Like Tullow did in the first half, Dundalk made the most of it and got over the line for another try and conversion and that brought the game to 27-24.
Then, close to the end, Dundalk got over the line again and converted, leaving Tullow scratching their heads, exiting the Towns Cup after a 27-31 defeat.
Kilkenny 48 – 07 Swords
Kilkenny’s women had a big win at the weekend and finished their league campaign sitting top of the table.
They do however need some other results to go in their favour to secure the league title, but they’ve had an incredible season so far.
Tullow 24 – 24 Tullamore
Tullow wrapped up their Division 1 Leinster League campaign at the weekend with a draw with Tullamore.
They finish out the season in third position, cup rugby is next.