PBC Cork 19
St Munchin’s 5
Presentation Brothers College Cork advanced, as predicted, to the Clayton Hotels Munster Schools Junior Cup semi-finals with a deserved victory over St Munchin’s College at Musgrave Park yesterday.
However, although they won with a bit to spare, this was never an easy passage against an injury-ravaged Limerick outfit and Pres will need to step up a gear when they face old rivals CBC at the penultimate stage.
Unlike the start of last week’s ill-fated and abandoned tie when Pres raced into a first-minute lead and threatened to run riot, St Munchin’s started well, admittedly aided by a breeze, and their pack quickly secured possession and territory.
Pres spent the opening 20 minutes in defensive mode, although they never looked like conceding to a visiting side without three of last week’s starting line-up.
However, the St Munchin’s effort intensified as the half wore on and Pres had to hold out in the face of furious rolling maul assaults off the back of line-outs.
However, the game changed dramatically in the third minute of first-half injury-time. Pres mounted their first attack in 31 minutes, with last week’s try-scorer Conor Morey sent away by towering centre Michael Hand before being hauled down in his side’s first incursion into the Munchin’s ’22.
From there, Hand found a gap in the middle of the field to race through for an excellent try that Alex Walsh converted - a 7-0 half-time lead, which truly flattered Pres.
Pres went on to build on that success. Scrum-half Joe O’Leary got in for a second try nine minutes into the second half and Walsh again converted to double the lead.
To their credit, St Munchin’s did their best to crank their game up another level; they simply never gave up and, once again, relied on the pack to build through the phases. Unfortunately, they ran up against a mean Pres defence that even survived a yellow card for skipper Richie Foley for a high tackle.
The Limerick outfit did deserve to get something from this game and it came in the 57th minute from substitute Conor O’Shaughnessy who displayed pace and power to get over in the corner for an unconverted try.
Pres went right back on the offensive and winger Jeff Holden was stopped short. But even though Pres conceded the lineout they immediately hit back when Foley pounced on a loose ball to grab the third try.
D French, C Morey, M Hand, D O’Sullivan, J Holden, A Walsh, J O’Leary, D McSweeney, B Kingston, C Morris, J Kelleher, M Giltinan, M O’Leary, R Foley (captain), A Kendellan.
D Devlin, M Hayes, T Gough, D O’Halloran, J Forde, J Keohane, D Hurley, C Doyle, T Buckley, T O’Sullivan.
K McInerney; J Campbell, J Keane, D Long, J Butler; J Ryan, D O’Callaghan; N Walsh, S Airney, N McNamara; C Duggan, G Kirwan, L Neilan, E O’Brien, C Nesbitt (captain).
J Clohessy, S Mason, C Finn, D Bermingham, S Nestor, D Slattery, C O’Brien-Comerford, K Kuch, C O’Shaughnessy, M Lawlor.
P Sheehan (M.A.R).
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