Wick­low U-16s are tops in lo­cal derby

Bray People - - Sport -

Wick­low U-16s 21, Rath­drum U-16s 10: Wick­low trav­elled to Rath­drum on Satur­day for the lo­cal derby and ended up win­ners 21 points to 10 in a very hard­fought con­test in the South East Win­ter League.

Rath­drum were to­tally up for this game and scored and con­verted a great try in the open­ing minute. Both teams fought for ev­ery ball with Rath­drum way faster to the ball on the deck.

Wick­low at­tacked from ev­ery an­gle but the Rath­drum de­fence was equal to ev­ery test. Rath­drum put to­gether some great at­tacks and but for some great tackling by Kevin Wylie would have broke the Wick­low line on two more oc­ca­sions. Wick­low were kick­ing some ball they should have run, and fail­ing to release the ball in time to release the free man.

Rath­drum were putting ball be­hind the Wick­low de­fence which gave Kevin Wylie the op­por­tu­nity to run, each time mak­ing good ground. Judd Byrne and Will O’Reilly tack­led ev­ery­thing that moved.

Daniel Man­nian led his team from the front. The front five of An­drew Boyce, Ja­son Byrne, Neill Dick­en­son, Vin­cent Glee­son and Kil­lian Her­aughty had the Rath­drum scrum un­der se­vere pres­sure.

The back­line was work­ing the ball from wing to wing where Ryan Don­nelly and An­drew Han­lon were mak­ing good breaks.

Stephen Nother and An­drew Con­way were at­tack­ing and de­fend­ing well. Ben Porter and Mark Hig­gins were link­ing well.

Rath­drum were awarded a penalty 20 min­utes into the game and stretched their lead to ten points. Try as they might Wick­low could not break down the Rath­drum de­fence.

Fif­teen min­utes into the sec­ond-half Shane Car­roll re­placed Vin­cent Glee­son. He put in some huge hits around the fringe of the rucks which seemed to un­set­tle the Rath­drum for­wards.

Two plays later Wick­low were awarded a penalty near the half way line. Ben Porter found a good touch on the Rath­drum 22. Daniel Man­nian plucked the ball out of the sky and set up the rolling maul. Wick­low drove Rath­drum over the line for Ja­son Byrne to score.

Ben Porter con­verted. Wick­low grew and grew in con­fi­dence and seven min­utes later took the lead when Ja­son Byrne drove over fol­low­ing some great at­tack­ing play by the backs. Ben Porter again con­verted.

Daniel O’Brien and Shane Byrne re­placed Will O’Reilly and An­drew Boyce. Wick­low pow­ered on to the end and with the last move of the game Kevin Wylie left three de­fend­ers for dead and was stopped inches from the line. Ben Porter was first up in sup­port and un­der pres­sure passed to Judd Byrne who scored un­der the posts. Ben Porter again con­verted.

Both teams are to be com­pli­mented for a great game. Rath­drum face Eden­derry in the Le­in­ster fi­nal of their league and we wish them well. Wick­low showed great char­ac­ter in this game and never gave up, over­com­ing all ob­sta­cles. They have a lot more rugby to play this sea­son.

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