Belvedere win penalty battle

 

THE expectations for yesterday's Leinster Schools Senior Cup tie at Donnybrook were high. Belvedere College, twice winners of the Junior Cup this decade, had six members on the Leinster senior panel and had much to offer this game, with a potentially explosive three quarter line and a very talented forward line.

Sadly, nerves set in, in a game that never really got going. Referee Sean Buggy was also far too heavily disposed to use of the whistle.

Castleknock deserve credit for resisting Belvedere's progress, thanks to a committed display from the pack, who won a majority of the recycled possession in a game where the two out halves impressed with some fine touchline kicking.

It was who drew Anthony Briody slotted his 14th minute penalty between the posts.

An obstruction on a Belvedere player, then saw full back, Donald Martin level proceedings after 20 minutes, and further penalties, one each side of half time, saw Belvedere race into a 9-3 lead.

By then Belvedere were clearly in control in the line outs, with Fergal Meegan taking some clean ball. But their sheer determination kept Castleknock in contention.

But they were left to rue a missed attempt on goal from Briody, and this spurred on the Belvedere pack, led on by flanker Ciaran Leyden and captain John Logan, to brush aside Castleknock's brave struggle. Martin added two more scores, one bang on full time.

A sterner test awaits Belvedere in the next round, when they come up against the winners of tomorrow game between St Mary's and St Michael's.