First XV v Cashel Away Match Report
Updated: Jan 17
AIL 2A Round 9
vs Cashel RFC
The travelling support arrived in Spafield to a bitterly cold afternoon. Originally scheduled to be played in December, this match was refixed due to a frozen pitch and brought us to the midway point in our season.
The wind was strong and swept diagonally across the pitch from corner flag to corner flag. Hats, scarfs, gloves, hoods and even the odd blanket were used to try to keep supporters warm. Some people went back to their cars to grab a second jacket.
A coach load of our Minis had travelled down earlier in the day to play against Cashel Minis.
They stayed on for the main match, giving the impression that we were playing at home as our support on the sidelines outnumbered the home support--at least that’s what we thought. The locals knew where the shelter was and were cute enough to be out of the wind, packed into a space at the side of the clubhouse wall.
We kicked off towards the car park end. It was clear to all that most of the game would be played on the opposite side of the pitch, such was the strength of the wind and some of our hardier supporters headed over to that side.
After 9 minutes, we were awarded a penalty, which Peter ‘Kicker’ Quirke did very well to slide between the posts to give us the lead.
0 : 3
Another penalty on 12 minutes just missed, as the wind speed increased.
It was evident that the match would be played in the forwards. Spreading the ball wide or kicking for position was not going to be possible.
The Cashel pack drove inside our 22 for the first time after twenty minutes and managed to push us back to score.
A great kick added the extras.
7 : 3
On the half hour mark, we had a scrum 5 metres from their line.
Matt Cosgrove made a break from the base of the scrum and was stopped inches from their line.
The ref. had seen an infringement and was playing advantage. He had a few words with the Cashel Captain.
We opted for another scrum from the resultant penalty and after two resets, we were awarded a Penalty Try, which would take us into the break with a narrow lead.
7 : 10
On fifty two minutes, Cashel kicked a penalty to tie the match.
10 : 10
On the hour mark, we were temporarily down to twelve men and Cashel took advantage of this to score a well worked Try, again using their pack to good effect for the push over. The conversion was good and they went into a seven point lead.
17 : 10
As so often this season, we remained calm and drove forward towards their line. Phase after phase saw us get inside their 22 with time almost up. Play continued for a full eleven minutes of added time as we managed to retain possession. Each time the ball went wide to our backs, they went straight back into the centre, being conscious that we’d need to score close to their posts to have any chance of the conversion, which would see us get the draw.
Matt Cosgrove was the man of the moment as he scored after some serious effort by our pack to get over the Cashel line.
A Cashel stalwart mentioned to us that there would be some very tired and sore bodies coming off the pitch after all the effort in attack and defence; a point all on the sideline agreed with.
Kicker Quirke was faced with a conversion attempt, half way between the posts and the sideline, on the left had side of the pitch.
As he lined up his kick, the wind appeared to get even stronger.
Quirkie worked out his angles and the kick went between the posts for a drawn game, which locals and visitors alike thought was a fair result on the day.
17 : 17
Next up is the return fixture against Cashel in Stradbrook on Saturday, January 14th
There are a few spots left for the Pre Match Lunch. For bookings, contact Conor Cleary.
The Carl Gross Menswear MOTM as voted by the panel was Joe Byrne.
For all your menswear needs visit Carl Gross online or at their store on Dawson Street.