Navan U19s Celebrate a Victorious Double!
Darcy Cup Final Navan RFC U19s 25 - 13 Wexford
Saturday 12 April at Athy RFC
Navan U19s triumphed over Wexford last Saturday to add to their silverware collection. The Leinster Champions had little opportunity to savour their All Ireland League victory over Munster’s Bruff last week as the Darcy Cup Final was scheduled to be played just six days later. The Meath men put in a resolute performance in Athy against Wexford to complete the double.
Navan started slowly, somewhat sluggish, still recovering from the demanding game a week ago. The high winds made the lineouts a lottery and the opening phases were quite scrappy. Wexford opened the scoring in the 7th minute when their out half dropped a goal following some patient phase play. Graham Garland put Navan back on terms with a penalty in the 12th minute and as the half wore on the Navan forwards began to assert at ruck and maul with some good ball carrying from Shane Faulkner and Colm Carpenter. A series of forward drives with Daire Meegan and Colm Carpenter prominent saw a quick ball released to Evan Burke who burst over the line close to the posts. Graham Garland added the conversion in the 30th minuite to give Navan a 10-3 lead. Navan pressed home their advantage at the end of the first half when Garland tagged on another penalty in the 32nd minute after Wexford illegally tried to stop a Navan maul. It was 13-3 to Navan at half time.
In the second half the forwards started where they left off and once again they worked the ball up deep into Wexford territory but Navan lost control of the ball at a ruck and after some fine interplay and off-loading rugby Wexford worked the ball down the pitch and got over in the corner. Wexford had their tails up at this stage and then spent the next 15 minutes camped on the Navan 22 making a number of surges at the Navan line. Finally they got the score that their pressure deserved when they won line-out ball straight off the top which was moved quickly and after a few missed tackles they were in scoring close to the posts. Navan received a let off when the relatively easy conversion was missed to leave the scores tied at 13 all on the 58 min mark.
Navan regrouped and the pack led by Ciaran Stafford, Ronan Scott and Harry Keane asserted pressure driving Navan deep into the Wexford half with a series of controlled drives. Navan moved the ball wide from the Wexford 22 and winger Tyron Pretorius got over in the corner in the 64th minute to give Navan an 18-13 advantage. There were to be no nervous moments on this occasion as there were last week in the All Ireland Final where Navan were holding on at the death, instead Navan finished with aplomb after good line breaks from Harry Hester and Colm Carpenter put Navan into Wexford territory again. Andrew Beggy was put into space down the blind side and although he had plenty to do he rode the tackles and got over the line. Garland converted to leave the final score with Navan victors at 25-13.
Daire Meegan was awarded Man of the Match with an outstanding display of tackling. There is one game left for this fine team as they still have to contest the North East League Final, date to be confirmed.
Team: 15. Mark O'Meara, 14. Andrew Beggy, 13. Harry Hester (C), 12. Evan Burke, 11. Tyron Pretorius, 10. Graham Garland, 9. Cillian Farrell, 8. Colm Carpenter, 7. Donal Ryan, 6. Harry Keane, 5. Ronan Scott, 4. Paul Richard, 3. Shane Faulkner, 2. Daire Meegan, 1. Ciaran Stafford.
Navan U13s 0 - 7 Gorey McGowan Cup Semi Final
Saturday 5th May at Clane RFC
Navan U13's Donnybrook dreams were extinguished in heartbreaking fashion last Saturday after coming up just short against Gorey iin the McGowan Cup Semi Final. On a bright morning with a fair sod, these evenly matched teams met at Clane RFC with the winners set to play in Donnybrook in the Leinster Clubs Cup Final Day on the May Bank Holiday weekend. With a win apiece against each other in the League both teams expected a tough match and so it proved with only a intercept try between the sides at the finish.
In the opening skirmishes Gorey tried to move the ball wide but both Navan wingers Jack Roche and Jaeic Timmons made super tackles on the halfway and it looked like it was going to take something special to open up either defence.
In the tenth minute Navan were awarded a penalty fifteen metres inside the Gorey half. A fine Ian Bermingham kick brought the ball deep inside the Gorey twenty two where Navan won their own lineout through Gary Faulkner and drove at the Gorey line. After a number of drives to test the Gorey defence were repelled, Navan were moving the ball wide when the Gorey centre intercepted the ball and ran the length of the field to score under the posts.
The Meath side rallied and had further chances in the first half but had to rely on a fine tackle from Full Back Mark Coen when the Gorey Centre broke the line from deep to avoid going further in arrears before Half Time.
The second half followed a similar pattern to the first with Navan winning plenty of ball from scrum and lineout but the Gorey defence proved resolute in defending the powerful running of Ronan Garvey and Jack Hilliard. A super break by Sam O'Brien through the heart of the Gorey team was unrewarded as the support runners couldn't secure possession at the breakdown. Gorey played percentage rugby in a bid to close out the game and their outhalf and centre kicked possession back over the Navan heads and invited the Balreask Old outfit to come from deep. An injury to the influential centre Ian Bermingham resulted in a changed back line and some good running by Cian McBride brought Navan into the Gorey half on a few occasions in the closing minutes but unable to unlock the defence. Full time Navan 0 - 7 Gorey.
The team have still a final to fight for when they play Boyne U13s in the North East League Semi-Final.
Navan: Jack Castles, Neil Moloney, Gary Faulkner, Ronan Garvey, Evan MacNamara, Evan Meegan, Sam O'Brien, Jack Hilliard, Connal Bird, Tom Gavigan, Jaiec Timmons, Adan Garvey, Ian Bermingham, Mark Coen.
Subs: Adam Treanor for Jack Castles, Cian McBride for Ian Bermingham, Michael Kennedy for Evan MacNamara.