Kealy puts on kicking show in Dr. Hickey
Corinthians sent packing
GREYSTONES CORINTHIANS 33 7
ANDREW KEALY served up a place kicking masterclass at Dr Hickey Park last Saturday to steer Greystones to a deserved 33–7 points win over visitors Galway Corinthians in the second round of the All Ireland League.
Playing a captain’s role, Kealy converted a total of four penalties and three conversions including an audacious 60 meter strike from well within his own half to punish Corinthians’ indiscretions in a first half played with a strong wind behind a dominant Greystones side.
The tone was set straight from the opening play when Corinthians were penalised for playing the ball in an offside position allowing Kealy an easy opening conversion from outside the 22. By the ten-minute mark two further penalties had extended the lead to nine points as Kealy struck twice more from distance to ram home the message that with the wind advantage any penalty concession will be punished.
Well on top in all facets of play, Greystones dominated the ball using the conditions to keep the visitors on the back foot throughout the opening passages of play. Only last gasp defending and the occasional handling error kept the scoreline to single figures until the 25th minute when Ian Cullinane crashed over for the opening try of the afternoon.
With Corinthians under defensive pressure Greystones opted for a series of scrums when awarded a succession of penalties that might well have resulted in a yellow card. This says a lot about ‘Stones this season as the addition of Joel Penders and Viktor Zelenka to the front row has added real steel to the Greystones pack and they had the Corinthians scrum under serious pressure all afternoon. Back row Cullinane picked from the back of the scrum for the decisive break to drive over close to the posts.
The lead was further extended straight from the restart when Greystones gathered on their 22 with Robin O’Sullivan breaking the line before quick ball was fed to Paudie Geoghegan on the left wing at full pace. There was no stopping the flying winger as he outpaced the scrambling defence kicking ahead and winning the foot race to touch down. Kealy converted both tries before sticking the knife into Corinthians with his audacious long range penalty.
With 35 minutes played Corinthians were penalised inside the Greystones half and having been punished for each transgression inside their own half could have been forgiven for thinking they were not going to be watching another ball sail through the posts but Kealy gave the referee the signal and the touch judges took up position behind the posts as he teed up the ball close to his 10 meter line. Taking a short run up he struck the ball cleanly and the sizeable support were never in doubt as it cleared the bar with distance to spare.
With half time looming Corinthians mounted their only real attack inside the Greystones 22 and a momentary lapse in the home defence allowed their centre slip through for a soft try in the last play of the half.
Playing into the wind in the second half Greystones sought to contain Corinthians who failed to add anything further to their first half try. Instead it was Greystones who continued to take the game to the visitors and added a third try when Mikey Doyle weaved through the Corinthians defence to touch down on 52 minutes. The irrepressible Kealy added the conversion to bring his total haul to 18 points for the afternoon.
With just under 20 minutes still to play Greystones thoughts turned to securing the bonus point try but if anything were guilty of trying too hard on an afternoon when the strong wind made ball handling difficult.
The breakthrough almost came in the final minutes when Killian Marmion pounced on a loose ball, fly hacking it down field supported by Geoghegan and Ferdia Kenny. While Geoghegan gathered and crossed the line the referee pulled play back after adjudging Geoghegan was ahead of the play when the ball was kicked ahead.
Head coach Kevin Lewis was nevertheless very pleased with his sides performance and with an opening return of two wins from two. Greystones are back in Dr Hickey Park again next Saturday when they host Rainey Old Boys and celebrate the 30th anniversary of the opening of their fine stand.
Greystones: Josh Glynn, Paudie Geoghegan, Andrew Lynch, Andrew Kealy, Nick Quirke, Killian Marmion, Andrew Kealy, Rob O’Sullivan, Ian Cullinane, John Campbell, Chris Symmonds, Eoin Marmion, Conor Pearse, Joel Penders, Viktor Zelenka
Replacements: Ferdia Kenny, Jay Curran, Mikey Doyle, Barry Traenor, Michael Douglas
Andrew Kealy launches a penalty towards the Corinthians posts.
Robin O’Sullivan drives at the Corinthians line.