Former Irish international Denis Leamy is lending coaching experience to the Tipp college and is upbeat after the side’s recent 16-14 win over PBC in Cork. However, he knows St Munchin’s won’t be overawed despite being a side in transition. “We rarely get much change from St Munchin’s, and we certainly didn’t last year when they scored a convincing win. The year before we had to rely on a last minute score to get the better of them. They will do what they always do, play a direct game and I am sure they will be well organised under coach Niall McDermott.”
Yet, Leamy is happy with the way Rockwell have trained under head coach Mark Butler since defeating Presentation College in the first round. The fact that they had to fight hard for victory will, he believes, stand to them.
Rockwell were well in control for most of that game but allowed Pres back into the game and ultimately had to fight hard for victory.
“We’re looking at that game in a positive light. We did a lot of good things and obviously we need to work on other aspects of our game given they way the match finished. We had a try disallowed and that would probably have made things easier, but you must give credit to Pres for the way they made us work for the win.”
St Munchin’s coach Eric Nelligan believes his side will have it all to do, but believes they should have advanced to this stage as winners — and a different draw with home advantage — after unluckily losing to Ard Scoil Ris. “They kicked two late penalties to beat us after we came back from a half time deficit to lead 15-13. Overall, we will do well to beat Rockwell. Nine oftomorrow’s starting team will be underage again next year and 15 of the 23 will be eligible. We have a decent pack that we would hope can match Rockwell, but the back division are quite inexperienced.”
Surprisingly beaten by Crescent in the last round, CBC paid for it by having to travel to Limerick to take on Ard Soil Ris, a match fixed for Dooradoyle today at 3.30pm. Christians’ coach Neil Lucey expects a much better performance from his charges.
“Let nobody take anything away from Crescent, they deserved their win (10-0), they coped with the conditions much better than we did and they took their chances well.”
Neutrals would have been surprised at the defeat of the favourites, but Lucey was impressed by Crescent’s determination. “You can never guarantee anything. Look at Leinster where red hot favourites St Michaels were beaten out of the tournament at the weekend. We’re still in the competition and we have a chance to make up for what was a disappointing display. The boys have responded well in training and they know where they have to improve.”