AIL round-up: Cork Con’s French presses Ireland Under-20s claims
Lansdowne bounce back against Young Munster, Dublin University beat Terenure
Lansdowne’s David O’Connor is tackled by Young Munster’s Conor Mitchell. Photograph: Oisin Keniry/Inpho
Sean French pressed his claims to feature for the Ireland Under-20s against France in his native Cork on Friday with a two-try contribution in Cork Constitution’s 15-7 All-Ireland League win over Garryowen.
Fresh from training with the Ireland U-20s against Joe Schmidt’s men in Belfast, French slotted in on the right wing for Cork Con at Dooradoyle and scored a try in each half as they retained their eight-point lead at the top of Division 1A. Aidan Moynihan and Peadar Collins swapped earlier tries with Garryowen losing ground in the play-off race.
Second-placed Lansdowne matched Con in bouncing back to winning ways with a tense 25-24 victory at home to relegation-threatened Young Munster. The Cookies came away with two bonus points, but Scott Deasy’s 73rd-minute penalty proved decisive for the defending champions, who had tries from Ian Prendiville (two) and Peter Sullivan (his ninth of the campaign).
Replacement outhalf James Fennelly also landed a crucial late penalty for semi-final-chasing Dublin University who pipped Terenure College 10-7, while wingers Michael Clune and Matt Bowen scored the only tries in UCC’s 15-3 defeat of Shannon. The Cork students, who travel to bottom side Terenure next Saturday, have moved three points clear of second-from-bottom Munsters.
Leinster Academy scrum half Paddy Patterson’s first half brace was overshadowed by Clontarf’s trio of second half tries as they beat UCD 26-17 at Belfield. Matt D’Arcy slid over in the left corner, then broke through midfield to set up Michael Courtney to score on the opposite right flank, and lock Cormac Daly bagged the bonus point from a quickly-taken penalty.
Meanwhile, Old Wesley have opened up a four-point lead at the top of Division 1B after overcoming Banbridge 22-0. Paul Harte scored the first of their three tries, fastening onto a brilliantly-threaded kick through from Alan Gaughan. Ulster’s Johnny McPhillips kicked two penalties and converted Zack McCall’s try in Ballynahinch’s 13-5 comeback win over Naas.
City of Armagh won 27-15 in their Ulster derby clash with Ballymena, aided by number 8 Neil Faloon’s fourth try in five games. Winger Mark Balaski scored the only try in Buccaneers’ 11-6 triumph at Malone, and his Connacht Academy colleague Conor Dean did all the scoring - including a slick fifth-minute try - in St. Mary’s 10-7 success against Old Belvedere.