Enniscorthy Win Towns Cup


Provincial Towns Cup

Enniscorthy 9
Kilkenny 8

Enniscorthy Scorer: Ivan Poole 3 pens. Kilkenny Scorers: Dave O’Connor 1 try; Rory McInerney 1 pen.

In fitting fashion, Enniscorthy left it late on Sunday before securing their seventh Towns Cup title with a well struck Ivan Poole penalty at a packed and well prepared Beechpark, home of Cill Dara RFC, on Sunday.

Poole’s kick came in the 80th minute of the contest and edged his side one point in front, six minutes after Kilkenny Captain Dave O’Connor had got the touch down at the bottom of a pile of players following a brilliant lineout and maul from the Marble City side.

During the first half hour and with the wind at their backs, Kilkenny had controlled proceedings in terms of possession and territory but the scores didn’t follow and it was Enniscorthy who edged in front thanks to Poole’s neatly converted penalty.

Just before the half time mark however, Kilkenny responded with a Rory McInerney kick to leave it all tied up at three apiece after a first half that promised much but didn’t catch fire.

Clonmel into Final

Young Munster Clonmel

Munster Junior Cup Semi Final
Clonmel 25
Young Munster 22

The remarkable progress of Clonmel RFC is showing no signs of slowing down after their battling home display was enough to oust Young Munster and book them a place in the Junior Cup final next Sunday against Shannon at Thomond Park (Ko 2:30).

Denis Leamy’s south Tipperary side are the title holders and have already secured the Junior league and Junior clubs cup this season before finishing second in the Round Robin qualifiers with their only defeat at the hands of AIL bound Dundalk.

They were seemingly cruising to the final on Sunday when leading 22-3 but the Limerick men didn’t wilt and fought back bravely to within a score before a late penalty from Clonmel proved key in giving them just enough of a cushion.

We’ll have more on this and the big final against Shannon in the coming days.



Dundalk Promoted to AIL

DLSP Dundalk

Another year and another new Leinster club in the AIL. Dundalk maintained the remarkable run of success for clubs from the province on Saturday afternoon by defeating DLSP 22-10 in a promotion play off at Kirwan Park.

In front of a huge crowd of vocal and passionate supporters, the county Louth club became the fifth Leinster league champion in a row to secure a place in the Ulster Bank League after winning the provincial title.

Wanderers, Tullamore, Skerries, Boyne and Seapoint have all made the step up in recent years and while Suttonians and now DLSP, have slipped down in that time, the Leinster representation is remains at an all time high of 20.

Junior Inter Pro Wrap

leinster jr v munster jr

A superb second half fight back helped Munster to a 22-17 win over reigning champions Leinster in Cobh on Saturday.

The men in blue led 17-3 at half time after a rip roaring start to the defence of their title but the 2013 champions fought back at the Cork venue to secure a memorable win.

In Westport, Ulster also produced a strong second half showing to withstand a Connacht fightback to secure an opening day win, scoring three tries. That sets up a key showdown with Munster next weekend.

Pic: Action from Last season’s Munster v Leinster clash.


Munster 22, Leinster 17
Connacht 12, Ulster 20

The Table

1 No change Ulster 1 1 0 0 20 12 8 0 0 4
2 Up Munster 1 1 0 0 22 17 5 0 0 4
3 Down Leinster 1 0 0 1 17 22 -5 0 1 1
4 No change Connacht 1 0 0 1 12 20 -8 0 0 0

UBL Play off Saturday

CLontarf Terenure

UBL Division 1a Play offs

LANSDOWNE 23 YOUNG MUNSTER 19, Aviva Stadium main pitch (after extra-time)
Scorers: Lansdowne: Tries: Tom Daly, Tyrone Moran; Cons: Scott Deasy, Conor McKeon; Pens: Scott Deasy 2, Conor McKeon
Young Munster: Try: Diarmaid McCarthy; Con: Gearoid Lyons; Pens: Gearoid Lyons 3; Drop: Willie Staunton

HT: Lansdowne 13 Young Munster 6

Scorers: Terenure College: -
Clontarf: Pens: Matt D’Arcy 3

HT: Terenure College 0 Clontarf 0

- Lansdowne and Clontarf will meet in the Division 1A final on the Aviva Stadium’s main pitch on Saturday, May 9 (kick-off 1pm)

Connacht v Ulster Preview

junior interprovincial connacht v leinster

Junior Inter Provincial Series – Round 1

Connacht v Ulster, Westport RFC, Saturday 2:30.

The squad of 26 men in green will look to tackle the powerful Ulster side gunning for victory in this years competition. The northerners have fallen agonisingly short of securing the title for two years on the bounce now.

At the helm for Connacht are two Mayo men with JP Walsh and Mickey Murphy calling the shots this year. Ballina man Murphy will also play while Westport’s Walsh is a former player with the squad and had had a great year at the helm of his home club.

The glorious breakthrough in 2011 and 2012 that saw Connacht secure back to back grand slam titles seems like a distant memory right now after Connacht’s struggles at this level in the last two years but despite the fact that the province’s clubs have struggled to compete in national cup competitions this year, there is a lot of hope surrounding this squad.

Munster v Leinster Preview

leinster jr v munster jr

Junior Inter Provincial Series – Round 1

Munster v Leinster, in Cobh at 2:30 Saturday

The 2013 champions host the 2014 champions in Cobh on Saturday in what promises to be a pulsating and unpredictable tussle.

Each year, this fixture comes up first and in some ways it is a shame that there isn’t a rotation of the order as both sides are often missing some key players from clubs involved in Round Robin Qualifiers (Dundalk this year) or Cups competitions (Clonmel, Enniscorthy and Kilkenny this year).

Yet the sheer spread of talent in the two provinces at Junior level means that there are always some supremely talented players to step in from a wide range of clubs. Dungarvan, Thurles and Castleisland are among the clubs from outside the top flight represented on Munster.

DLSP v Dundalk Preview


Ulster Bank League Round Robin Play Offs

DLSP v Dundalk, Kirwan Park

Brace yourselves folks, this one is likely to carry with it a roller-coaster of emotions on Saturday afternoon and some tense rugby to boot.

It is hard not to feel a little sympathy towards De La Salle Palmerston and their current predicament.

This isn’t the story of a club that has been holding back the inevitable for far too long, nor is it a case of a side that took risks to reach the highest level only to fall short. Quite simply, this is one bad three or four year cycle, probably their first in AIL history and it has come at the worst possible time.

Consider this, from 1995 up until 2012, DLSP finished in a range of league positions between 11th and 28th overall in Ulster Bank AIL rugby. Then, four seasons ago, they slid back a little to 31 and within a year to 38, by last season they were in the bottom Division and finishing 48th, just five places off the bottom.

PODCAST: Enniscorthy RFC Special

Dundalk v Enniscorthy Towns Cup

The second of our Towns Cup Final Special podcasts features Enniscorthy RFC as the club prepares for Sunday’s big final at Cill Dara RFC where they will take on Kilkenny.

The slaneysiders have had very strong season finishing second in the Leinster league and beating Dundalk in the semi finals of this competition.

On Saturday evening last, their second xv captured the Towns Seconds Cup in Carlow by beating Tullow in dramatic fashion.

After the game host Rob Murphy and regular pundit Dave Mahon met with members of the club, squad and management team to discuss all things Enniscorthy rugby.

In part one, we hear from club president Jim MacAuley, committee member Charlie Kavanagh and senior squad management team member Liam Walsh.

In part two, player coach Decalan O’Brien joins the pod along with his assistant coach Damien McCabe and players James Doyle and Killian Lett.

PODCAST: Kilkenny RFC Special

Kilkenny Champions

KnockOn.ie went on the road this week to catch up with some of the people behind the teams involved in the 90th Provincial Towns Cup Final in Leinster.

On Saturday we visited the Left Bank bar in Kilkenny city to meet with members of Kilkenny RFC who are back in the final for a second successive season.

Players, management and volunteers in the background all joined host Rob Murphy and podcast regular Dave Mahon to talk about their club, the season that has just gone and what this Towns Cup final appearance means to them.

We hear from Head Coach Steve Ashmore, club Captain Dave O’Connor, first team player Ray Pembrooke, team manager Packie Hennerby, PRO Padraig Tracey and club President Gary Brickell.

Caption: The Kilkenny team pictured after their win over Longford in February that secured the Division 1b league title. Pic: Sokilkenny.ie

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