Towards a century at the heart of Connacht rugby

Firsts 15 – UL Bohs 27


Match Result

  • Result: Galwegians Firsts 15 - UL Bohemians 27
  • Venue: Crowley Park on Sat Oct 6th 2018
  • Competition: AIL Division 2A

Match Report

Galwegians lost their second game in this season’s AIL campaign and their first home fixture when they came up short against a victorious UL Bohs team at a sunny but breezy Crowley Park on Saturday.

The Blues started well, and playing with the aid of a stiff first-half breeze, they opened the scoring in the second minute when out-half Morgan Codyre struck a neat penalty near the 22. However the visitors soon got into their stride, and they began to dominate possession. They hit the front after 11 minutes when prop Joey Conway burrowed his way over from close in after a sustained period of pressure.

Wegians then used the wind to dominate territory but the visitors had the lions’ share of possession. The Blues came closest to scoring, with Adi Donovan almost through at one stage, only to lose the ball with the line at his mercy. However they eventually crossed for the opening try and regained the lead just before the half-hour mark, when Codyre cleverly switched the play to send winger Ewan Strang over in the right corner. The out-half then landed an excellent touchline conversion to give the Blues a five point cushion.

Unfortunately that was to prove one of Codyre’s last acts as the promising playmaker was soon carried off with a worrying looking injury. Bohs then regained the initiative and Wegians’ sub Brian Murphy was barely on the field when he was sin-binned for obstruction when defending his line. Although the initial lineout move was repelled by the Blues, the visitors levelled the game on the stroke of half-time when sub flanker Niall O’Shea dived over near the right corner from the base of a ruck.

Out-half Robbie Bourke missed the conversion, but he soon found his range within a minute of the restart when Wegians were penalised near their 22, putting the visitors back in front again. It got better for the Red Robins on 49 minutes when they scored a third try, this time full-back Joe Murray crossing under the posts after they opened up the Wegians defence. This gave them a commanding ten-point cushion with half an hour remaining, and with the wind at their backs.

Despite facing an uphill task, Wegians responded gamely and they started to make some inroads. However Codyre's absence was keenly felt as stand-in kicker, centre Dave Clarke missed three penalties for 'Wegians, including one that bounced back off a post.

Bohs survived a sin-bin period for centre Harry Fleming, and with turnovers continuing to prove costly for the Blues, the game was put out of their reach on 70 minutes. After stealing ball again in their own half, the students ran downfield and pierced the Wegians rearguard, resulting in Ireland Under-20 international back James McCarthy crossing to seal a bonus point try, which Bourke converted for good measure.

The Blues never gave up and Strang completed his brace out wide soon after in the 72nd minute. This brought them to within a score of a bonus, but try as they might, 'Wegians were unable to grab a late losing bonus point.

So for the second game running, the Blues emerged empty-handed from a game where it was well within their grasp to come away with points. However they will have to dust themselves down to prepare for their third AIL game which comes up this Saturday away to another student side Queens in Belfast.


Rory Gaffney; Ewan Strang, Adi Donovan, Dave Clarke, Daniel Faulkner; Morgan Codyre; Stephen Browne; Fiachra Finnegan, Christy Reilly, Ryan Lomas; Anthony Ryan (captain), Eoin Tarmey; Ronan Moore, Paul Hackett, Michael O’Donnell. Subs: Conor Kyne, Ciaran Gavin, Matthew Mullins, Brian Murphy, James Kennedy

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