Dolphin to face Cork Con in last four
Rugby:Cork Constitution and Dolphin will meet again in the second semi-final of the AIB League next Saturday after facing one another in their final Division 1A outing at Temple Hill. Cork Con’s 23-13 victory secured top spot in the table.
For Dolphin supporters there was an anxious wait to see if they had held on to third spot. They did so by the skin of their teeth, with Shannon narrowly failing to beat Garryowen.
Unquestionably, Cork Con will be fancied to repeat their victory in next Saturday’s semi-final but much may depend on just who, among the two sides Munster contracted players, is available.
For the moment though, Con would seem to be in the better position, particularly as they have home advantage. They had Saturday’s game effectively sewn up when 20-3 ahead at half-time with tries from Cronan Healy, Scott Deasy and Duncan Williams.
Dolphin did make a much better fist of it in the second half when they had the advantage of the wind but they never looked like catching their rivals.
Elsewhere, Shannon’s season finished on a hugely disappointing note when they lost 9-8 to Garryowen at Coonagh. Frustratingly, they had a chance to snatch victory but Mossy Lawlor’s conversion of Paddy Butler’s try drifted wide.
The remaining game saw Blackrock College confirm their Division 1A status by trouncing UL Bohemians 36-15 at Stradbrook. Once again, the highly rated Andrew Conway was one of their try scorers, with Kyle Tonnetti contributing two.
In Division 1B, Old Belvedere make sure of top spot and a place in the league semi-finals by demolishing a weakened UCC outfit 48-3 at the Mardyke. Superly led by Andy Dunne at out-half, they scored seven tries to put them in a good frame of mind for next Saturday’s tilt at St Mary’s.
Buccaneers avoided relegation by accounting for second placed Young Munster 18-8 at Dubarry Park. As did Dungannon following their 24-15 home success over Galwegians.
So, Ballymena and Ballynahinch go down. The two sides where in opposition at Ballymacarn Park yesterday where last season’s AIB Cup winners Ballynahinch proved successful 35-20. Sadly, however, it was not enough to stop them going into Division Two.