Newbridge College too strong for Kilkenny in Leinster Schools Cup quarter-final

Pair of tries by prop Bill Bohan in first six minutes provide platform for victory

Newbridge College 29 Kilkenny College 12

A pair of tries by prop Billy Bohan in the first six minutes provided the platform for Newbridge to make the Leinster Schools Senior Cup quarter-final at Energia Park on Tuesday afternoon.

The Kildare school has grown a reputation for all-out attacking rugby under the stewardship of Johne Murphy.

They were out of the blocks in Olympian-sprint fashion, tighthead Bohan hammering home tries in the second and sixth minutes, Paddy Taylor converting both of them.


It was exactly what Kilkenny would have been keen to guard against, taking those blows to the chin to scrap their way into the game as Stephen Smyth provided leadership.

Smart kicking by halfbacks Tadhg Brophy and Paddy Martin kept Kilkenny pinned down.

Suddenly, Newbridge’s indiscipline became a factor in Kilkenny moving forward, their close-quarter attack stopped just short of the line.

The problem was Kilkenny couldn’t sustain any pressure, venturing upfield only to be sent backwards by the boot of Newbridge outhalf Paddy Martin.

Wing Adam Larkin-Smithers was denied a try by a foot-in-touch before captain Shane Treacy’s offload cleared the way for Larkin-Smithers to claim the third try for 19-0 at the break.

There was definitely a lift in intensity as Kilkenny’s forwards counter-rucked for a penalty which Naughton sent to the corner and his collection of a long lineout almost did the trick.

The carrying came more effectively from Patrick Bramley, Watchorn and Smyth and the tempo was high enough for Jack Campion to ask questions.

The footballing skills of Treacy came to the fore in firing a tumbling kick inside the 22 where Newbridge only left once flanker Ronan McGroary powered to the whitewash in the 52nd minute.

At last, Kilkenny were able to turn their muscular forward work into points when establishing their driving game for Watchorn to blast over for Naughton to convert.

As bodies tired, the gaps began to open up more easily, allowing centre Taylor to hit the afterburners for a breakaway try in the 62nd minute.

The game was long gone at this stage. However, Kilkenny pressed the action, working an overlap for Michael Adewuyi to make the left corner.

Scorers: Newbridge – B Bohan 2 tries; P Taylor try, 2 cons; A Larkin-Smithers, R McGroary try each. Kilkenny – A Watchorn, M Adewuyi try each; S Naughton con.

Newbridge College: T Lawlor; R Allen (A Carroll 60), C Mangan, P Taylor, A Larkin Smithers; P Martin (C Manifold 62), T Brophy (D Connolly 62); J R. Walsh (C O’Loughlin 52), M Masterson (J Montgomery 60), B Bohan (S O’Loughlin 62), S Davitt, S Treacy (Capt, R Byrne 62)), J Sheedy (J Dennis 52), R McGroary, R Munnelly.

Kilkenny College: D Benn (M Passberger 46); J Tully (J Kelly 53), G O’ Rourke, I Fenton (M Adewuyi 64), D Symes; S Naughton, J Campion; T Smith (S Bailey 64), D Hendy (L Kemp 64), A Watchorn, H Peavoy (G Wakeham 52), J O’ Sullivan (I Caldbeck 64), P Bramley (R Powell 52), G Atkinson, S Smyth (Capt).

Referee: P Haycock, Leinster Branch.