PBC turn table on Bandon to book Munster final place
Two second-half tries give Cork city school upper hand at Musgrave Park
PBC players celebrate after Jack O’Sullivan scored his side’s second try against Bandon Grammar in the Munster Schools Senior Cup semi-final at Musgrave Park. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho.
MUNSTER SCHOOLS SENIOR CUP SEMI-FINAL
The Cork city school eventually ended Bandon’s brave resistance with a try from number eight and captain Jack O’Sullivan in the closing play, 16 minutes into second-half stoppage-time. Sean French converted.
Rank outsiders Bandon, who were appearing in their first semi-final, competed magnificently all through and led 3-0 for a long period until the west Cork side were hit by injuries.
Play was held up for a quarter-of-an-hour and the delay clearly impacted on the Bandon side, whose momentum was interrupted, allowing hot favourites Pres finally become an attacking force.
And it took a moment of inspiration from powerful centre French to break Bandon’s defiance in the 50th minute. His brilliantly executed kick and chase in a tight space led to a try in the left corner for a 5-3 lead.
Pres, though, couldn’t relax, especially, when Bandon outhalf Evan Palmer tried his luck from a long-distance penalty nine minutes into injury-time only for his kick to fall short.
Bandon enjoyed wind advantage from the start and received an early boost with a Hudson penalty from in front of the posts after just three minutes.
The weather changed dramatically as sleet showers turned the ball into the proverbial bar of soap and the floodlights had to be turned on amid the gloom.
Bandon dominated territory with scrumhalf Jack Crowley’s propping kicks keeping Pres on the back foot, forcing them to concede penalties, as the outsiders led 3-0 at the interval.
Pres were still struggling on the resumption until French and O’Sullivan struck for the crucial scores.
PBC: J Wren; P Buckley, S French, J Broderick, T Fitzgerald; P Sylvester, G Bradley; C Burke, B Scannell, B O’Connor; A McAuliffe, M McCarthy; C Fitzgerald, J O’Sullivan (capt), C Fitzgerald. Replacements: L Bruce for Bradley 49 mins, E Burns for McAuliffe 68 mins
BANDON GRAMMAR SCHOOL: S Hudson; V Lovell, B Gur, E Greene, J Donnelly; E Palmer, J Crowley; J French, T Coomey, A Deane; C Scully, J Bradfield; B Hayes, R Stokes, C Deane (capt). Replacements: S Minihane for Hudson injured 45 mins, H Hall for Greene injured 47 mins, N Beamish for Hayes 54 mins, M Archer for Bradfield 56 mins
Referee: R O’Sullivan (Munster).