Ark­low suf­fer nar­row de­feat against Long­ford

Bray People - - Sport -

Ark­low 8, Long­ford 9: This, the first game of the Le­in­ster League started off at a fast pace with both sides try­ing to gain ground through their re­spec­tive packs.

Long­ford were fist to score af­ter ten min­utes with a well struck penalty. Ark­low equalised quickly with a penalty in front of the post.

Both packs were giv­ing of their best and the play moved quickly be­tween the Ark­low 22 and Long­ford’s 22. Ark­low made a se­ries of at­tacks up field, which ended with a line out about 15 me­tres from the Long­ford try line.

A good clean catch from this line out and some good maul­ing among the for­wards re­sulted in Ark­low’s Barry O’Neill scor­ing in the cor­ner. The ex­tra two points were missed but the an­gle was very dif­fi­cult for con­ver­sion.

Ark­low were now start­ing to ap­ply pres­sure with Long­ford oc­ca­sion­ally lift­ing the siege and Long­ford were un­lucky not to score due to a top class tackle by Johnny But­ter­worth.

Long­ford had a player dis­missed for ten min­utes for per­sis­tent fowl­ing. Ark­low de­fended well for the re­main­der of the first-half. As the half ended the game would be­long to the team that seized the op­por­tu­nity.

Af­ter just five min­utes Long­ford had an­other man sent off. Long­ford were now re­duced to 13 play­ers to Ark­low’s 15 and Ark­low did not take ad­van­tage of their nu­mer­i­cal su­pe­ri­or­ity.

This should have been the sig­nal for Ark­low to get them­selves down into Long­ford’s 22. Most of the game was now be­ing played in the cen­tre of the field un­til Ark­low had a player sin binned for ten min­utes.

The ref­eree at this time seemed in­tent on mak­ing up for his ear­lier send­ing off and was giv­ing Long­ford a suc­ces­sion of penal­ties for Ark­low in­dis­cre­tions.

One penalty was from the cen­tre of the field and the Long­ford kicker con­verted from a very good kick.

The Long­ford team now saw them­selves in with a chance of winning this match and ap­plied pres­sure at ev­ery point of the game and were awarded an­other penalty which was duly con­verted.

By now Ark­low were in try­ing to force the game but Long­ford were good at slow­ing down the game and fight­ing for ev­ery bit of pos­ses­sion.

Ark­low forced their way up the pitch for one last bat­tle and were awarded a dif­fi­cult penalty and this was to be the fi­nal play of the game so the con­ver­sion had to be suc­cess­ful but alas Ark­low’s kicker was just slightly off.

This ended the game, a game Ark­low could have won but should take some hope from pe­ri­ods of this game where Ark­low played very well. This is a long league and hope­fully there will be bet­ter days for Ark­low.

Team: from A. Plun­kett, J Louth (C), E. Clancy, B. O Neill, K. Kir­win, B. Di­a­per, P. Crotty, I. Hart, M V Es­beck, M Ka­vanagh, D. Ka­vanagh, R. Mur­phy, J. But­ter­worth, C. Hughes, R. Mc Cor­mack, K Mc Carthy. M Doyle, S Vig­ors, L. Plun­kett.

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