- Result: Galwegians U21 6 - Garryowen 13
- Venue: Dooradoyle on Sat Nov 19th 2011
- Competition: SW Conference League
Galwegians garnered a bonus point away to the unbeaten Garryowen in Limerick on Saturday, but they will feel that this was one that got away.
The weather conditions were perfect although the pitch was a little soft, it had a superb surface and both sides tore into each other in the early exchanges.
The Wegians pack were dominant in the scrum as they shunted the home team backwards on numerous occassions but the lineout went a little awry, (note to management, bring a couple of towels to clean the ball next time). The home defence were containing the Wegians backs but the pressure was beginning to tell as the Sky Blues inched towards the line. However a piece of grand larceny by the home pack (I suppose the home side would regard it as a great turnover) on the goal line started a length of the field move which ended up with a cross kick being fielded by the Garryowen right wing who ran in to score to give the home side a 7-0 lead.
Wegians were then further knocked back when hooker Calum O'Connell was sin binned for leading with his forearm as he smashed his way through the home defense. Garryowen dominated the 10 minutes of the sin-bin but could only manage a 3 point penalty as Wegians showed huge commitment in keeping their line protected after a number of 5-metre scrums.
Within a mintue of going 10-0 down, and back to 15 men, Wegians almost scored after a solid scrum and some slick hands from the backs set Padraig Jennings away but a good covering tackle halted the move. However Garryowen came in off their feet as Wegians tried to get a quick recycle, leaving Darragh Leader to brush the post with a penalty to take Wegians back to within 7.
10-3 was the half time score, Wegians making a few too many handling errors to convert their forward dominance, although you have to give a lot of credit to a very well drilled Garryowen defense who forced a lot of the errors. Garryowen also were very quick on the break and looked dangerous every time they moved the ball.
The second half started with Wegians immediately on the attack and the pressure led to a couple of penalties, one of which was converted by Leader to get Wegians within 4 points.
A couple of silly mistakes led to Wegians giving away a kickable penalty which Garryowen converted to give them a 7 point lead. A blatant and late tackle by the Garryowen blind side on fullback Garry O'Brien earned him a deserved yellow card.
The remainder of the match was played between both 22's with Wegians keeping most of the pressure on but unable to break through an obdurate home team defense. A losing bonus point is little reward for a highly competitive and combative display but lessons will be learned as this talented young team continue to develop.