Clontarf pegged back by Cork Con
LAST SEASON’S runners-up Clontarf have every reason to feel frustrated following their opening 22-20 defeat to Cork Constitution in Division 1A of the Ulster Bank League at Temple Hill.
Clontarf seemed to have the match in the bag when leading 17-3 early in the second half. They had tries from Cathal O’Flynn and Dermot O’Meara with Richie Lane landing both conversions and a penalty.
Cork Con, their line-out and scrum misfiring, were in all sorts of trouble. But somehow they managed to dig out a dramatic victory with a try from fullback Darragh Lyons, converted by Jerry Hurley, seven minutes into injury time.
Earlier, Cork Con had got themselves back into contention with tries from James Ryan and a superb effort from Hurley after a move which started near their own line. Hurley landed one of the conversions to make it 17-15.
A further penalty from Lane then gave Clontarf some breathing space before Cork Con launched their late attack which gave them a remarkable victory.
In Division 1B, the two student sides made great starts with UCD trouncing Belfast Harlequins 48-20 and Dublin University accounting for Blackrock College 29-11 at College Park.
Both picked up bonus points. UCD crossed for seven tries with wing Sam Coghlan-Murray and flanker Danny Kenny getting two apiece.
Dublin University managed four in defeating Blackrock College, Jack Dilger, Ariel Robles, Pierce Dargan and David Joyce going over. It was an impressive effort from last season’s runaway Division Two B champions.
The other promoted side Malone also made an impressive start to their campaign by trouncing Dungannon 36-13 at home. They scored four tries through Glen Moore, Alan O’Connor, Neil Alcorn and Chris Leatham, while Ulster outhalf Niall O’Connor contributed 16 points with the boot.
Elsewhere, Bruff recorded a useful 25-5 home victory over Ballymena, Brendan Deady and Garry Leonard getting their tries. The final game saw Ballynahinch honour former player Nevin Spence’s memory with a fine 27-17 away victory over Buccaneers with Aaron Ferris, Aaron Cairns and Chris Napier getting tries.