Loss puts Boyne on brink

Mid Louth Independent - - SPORT -

BOYNE face a mas­sive job to se­cure their Le­in­ster League topflight sta­tus in the com­ing weeks after slump­ing to their eighth de­feat from 10 games at Sham­rock Lodge last Satur­day.

Op­po­nents Kilkenny started the day sec­ond from bot­tom of Divi­sion 1A, hence this looked like a piv­otal clash for both teams, but de­spite their best ef­forts the Drogheda men were well beaten and find them­selves eight points adrift, with just four rounds re­main­ing.

Dun­dalk now oc­cupy the rel­e­ga­tion play-off po­si­tion and Boyne must fo­cus on re­duc­ing that big deficit over the next three games be­fore the two Louth clubs meet on the fi­nal day of the sea­son at Mill Road.

The first of those games is back at Sham­rock Lodge this com­ing Satur­day when Wick­low are the vis­i­tors (kick-off 2.30pm) and some se­ri­ous work will have to be done on the train­ing ground to rec­tify de­fen­sive weak­nesses which saw them con­cede seven tries last week­end.

Boyne were left with a moun­tain to climb from an early stage as Kilkenny got over for two touch­downs through ‘Pud­din’ Dempsey

Boyne Kilkenny 21 47

and Liam Caddy, with the lat­ter con­vert­ing both for a 14-0 lead after only seven min­utes.

To their credit, the Drogheda side hit back strongly with two tries from Rory Hen­nessy and Adam Brodi­gan in the space of five min­utes, both con­verted by cap­tain Karl Keogh, to draw level on the half-hour mark.

How­ever, the mo­men­tum shifted firmly back in Kilkenny’s favour com­ing up to half-time as they were awarded a penalty try be­fore adding their bonus-point score through Garry Dunne - 26-14 to the vis­i­tors at the break.

The next score would be cru­cial and Gary Downey’s men were on a hid­ing to noth­ing once they con­ceded an­other seven-pointer in the 50th minute, with the try scored by Joe Manuel in the cor­ner after gath­er­ing a cross­field kick.

Kilkenny fol­lowed up with two fur­ther touch­downs - in­clud­ing an­other penalty try which re­sulted from their dom­i­nant set-piece - to in­crease their ad­van­tage to 47-14.

Boyne did put a slightly bet­ter look on the score­board with their third try, scored by Kevin McCleery and also con­verted by Keogh, but it came too late for them to chase an­other score which would have earned them a los­ing bonus point.

And with the league’s top three teams pro­vid­ing the op­po­si­tion over the next three games, even to fin­ish sec­ond from bot­tom - which might be enough to se­cure a rel­e­ga­tion play-off - would rep­re­sent a tremen­dous achieve­ment for the Drogheda side as things stand.

There was bet­ter news for Boyne 2nds, how­ever. Last year’s cham­pi­ons in that grade are cur­rently last in the Le­in­ster 2nds League Divi­sion 1A, but they boosted their chances of sur­vival when over­com­ing sec­ond-bot­tom Kilkenny 20-12 de­spite start­ing the game with only 13 play­ers.

Boyne 2nds’ only other vic­tory this sea­son was also against Kilkenny and just two points now sep­a­rate the clubs with four games re­main­ing, while six­th­placed Wick­low are now also within touch­ing dis­tance for the Drogheda side.

A Boyne for­ward tries to set up ruck ball after be­ing brought to ground.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Ireland

© PressReader. All rights reserved.