29 January 2024
It was a weekend of mixed fortunes.
It started out so brightly with a great win for the Men’s J1s against Wanderers 29-12 in the school on Friday night – Friday night lights, we could be onto something.
A superb win for the U20's against Seapoint on Sunday 26-15. Congrats to Mark McGinty and Paul Graham. A drawn game for the Women’s J1s against Barnhall 5-5.
But for anyone who missed it, 5 members of the Blackrock Women’s team had a magnificent win over Australia to secure the World Seven series in Perth – a huge congratulations to Beibhinn Parsons, Megan Burns, Emily Lane, Aoibheann Reilly and Alannah Fitzpatrick, a huge achievement of which you can be enormously proud.
So, where did we fall down? Unfortunately the Men’s 1st XV lost narrowly to a fast improving Garryowen side 17-20. Again this one came right down to the wire, and we had a chance in the dying seconds to launch another attack on their line, but they defended well and disrupted our ball. Was this cruel? Yes and no. We went down 17 nil and Garryowen were playing some really good rugby, it started to look ominous. But, as always with these guys, we found a way back into the game and started to play the way we can. Both sides were level on 17-17 with nothing left on the clock but Garryowen managed a penalty and nicked it.
I could be accused of being too ‘glass half full’ but we are still in a really strong position. Most sides will not recover from being 17 points down, particularly to a seasoned Garryowen team. Not only did we recover, but we did so in a fashion that makes me believe had we played from the start and found a way into the game earlier we’d be celebrating another great victory. But we didn’t and we aren’t!
'So Flavin, why the cause for optimism?' I hear you say. Well, apart from Mary's there are only 4 points separating the next 6 sides – one win makes a massive difference. We know we are capable of winning our next round of matches, and if we start well and then show the same doggedness and resilience to carry it through, I am confident we’ll pick up plenty of points over the remaining games.
7 sides are vying for the Top 4. Mary’s are home and dry – the battle is between the next 6 for 3 slots and we have no fear of any of these teams. However 6 into 3 does not go. I was never a maths genius (that statement doesn’t need any validation from Mr. McGinty!) but I do know that we’re in for one hell of a ride.
We did promise you entertainment – this is exactly what you get with these guys. This team play a brand of really exciting rugby, we just need to hone into the business end of the season and close out these games. They’re fully capable. Stick with it – it’s going to be a nerve tingling run in to the end of the season, and these guys have managed that situation twice before. I’m in.
Enjoy the 6 nations and see you all refreshed in Naas Feb 10th for another battle.
Keep the faith.
Blackrock College RFC
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