Club rugby: Clontarf avenge October defeat to Constitution
Galwegians get shock defeat over Garryowen; Old Belvedere in 26-15 win over Lansdowne
With leaders UCD losing at Terenure the previous night, Clontarf succeeded in closing the gap at the summit to a single point, avenging their October defeat to Con.
Two penalties from out-half Joey Carbery after two and six minutes set them on their way, and Brown’s 22nd-minute converted try came from cleanly-won lineout possession and neat hands across the back-line.
Playing into a strong wind, Darragh Lyons’s penalty on the half-hour mark opened Con’s account as they trailed 13-3 at the interval. Two more penalties from the experienced number 10 had the Leesiders even closer just six minutes into the second half.
However, some crisp interplay between backs and forwards created the opening for Brown’s 64th-minute score, and Con could only respond with a Lyons penalty two minutes from the end.
Meanwhile, Galwegians caused one of the shocks of the day as they defeated play-off chasers Garryowen 30-17 at Crowley Park. The third-from-bottom westerners won for the first time in five outings, with lively left winger John Cleary helping himself to a brace of tries.
Old Belvedere put a run of four straight defeats behind them with an excellent 26-15 win over Lansdowne on the Aviva Stadium’s back pitch, Leinster’s Steve Crosbie converting his own try and kicking four penalties.
Young Munster dug deep to see off Ballynahinch’s challenge on a 7-6 scoreline in Greenfields.
Third-placed Munsters have opened up a nine-point lead on Garryowen, who currently hold the fourth and final play-off place, and David Corkery’s side sit just three points off top spot.
Barry Keeshan coolly converted Kevin Allen’s injury-time try as Dolphin denied bottom side Belfast Harlequins right at the death, edging to a 23-22 triumph at Irish Independent Park.
Number 8 Tom Ryan and winger Tim Maupin scored two tries each as Dublin University ran out comfortable 43-17 winners over Old Wesley.
A terrific break and try from outhalf Sean Kearns was the final score of Mary’s 19-16 win at home to Buccaneers, as the Dubliners made it 10 victories in a row. Kearns continues to top the scoring charts with a very impressive 140 points scored after 14 rounds.