Castlebar 30 Gort 5
Report from John Mulligan: Castlebar are going strong in division one of the Connacht junior league after a solid display against Gort on Sunday in Cloondeash. Castlebar opened the scoring with two penalties from Paul Coady before Gort came back and scored a try on the intercept. Castlebar had to raise their game and quash the memory of last years defeat. That they did in some style with some excellent rugby and Enda Murphy got them back on track with an excellent try off the rolling maul. Gort could not answer and Castlebar came back with two tries from Darren Claussen, the first coming from a true team effort leaving the centre a simple from the 22. The second coming from good interplay leaving Claussen a run from half way. Paul Coady was adding the points from the conversions. But the best and the bonus point was yet to come when Castlebar scored their fourth try. Paul Coady fed Robbie Cusack who in turn passed to Darren Claussen; Claussen then was involved in excellent exchange play with Mike Campbell and Tadgh Kirby before taking the pass back and feeding Alex Goor who ran in from the 22. It was a sweet score and one badly needed to keep the pressure on Westport and Monivea at the top of the table with a game in hand at this early stage.
Castlebar: Alan Gavin, Paddy Durcan, Kevin Cox, Alex Goor, Paul Heverin, Ger Prendegast, Enda Murphy, Mike Campbell, Christy Cusack, Robbie Cusack, Tadgh Kirby, Darren Claussen, Paddy Flannelly, Mike Power, Paul Coady.
Subs Used: Simon O’Malley, Ben Cockrell, and Matt Connolly.
Next Sunday Castlebar travel to Sligo in a game that will be important in the long term. Sligo have proved a bogey side of late but this time are starting to show potential and will be fired up for this one. Kick off in Sligo is at 3pm and if you can get out to Sligo on Sunday to roar the lads on, then do so.
Training is at the usual times.
Castlebar ladies have resumed training for the new season. This, as always is a great chance to get out and play some rugby with several challenges arranged for the new season. But the training has to be put in before those games so everyone is asked to come out to the rugby club on Saturday evening’s at half six. There will be more on forthcoming games over the next couple of weeks so watch this space!!
Under 11 and 12 News:
On Saturday last the under 11’s and 12’s travelled to Tuam to play the local side. As Tuam had only 12 players in total between both their squads and Castlebar had twenty players between both their squads it was decided to divide Castlebar into two teams combining a mixture of under 11’s and 12’s and for both to play Tuam.
The first game got off to a lively start with Tuam opting time and again to use their bigger pack to break through the Castlebar defence. They managed to threaten the Castlebar line early on but some great tackling by both forwards and backs kept them at bay. The Castlebar pack, made up of Eric and Alan Gavin, Aidan Gleason (Capt), Matthew Staunton and newcomer James Nash gradually got the upper hand and began to provide Matthew Rogan and his backs, Gary Ralph, William Keaney, Michael Maughan and Conor O’Shea with some good ball to run at the Tuam backs. Conor O’ Shea scored Castlebar’s first try when he picked up a loose ball in his own half and ran through several tackles to touch down. The second half started with Tuam trying desperately for the equaliser and again using their big forwards to run at Castlebar but to no avail, the Castlebar lads’ tackles stopped them time and again. A Castlebar counter attack from deep in their own half saw Conor O’Shea again run in a fine try to finish of the game.
The second game saw the Tuam team return better organised and concentrating on their strengths, their very big pack. The Castlebar lads were well prepared also and their recycling of the ball after tackles caused Tuam problems. After some good work by Richard McGreal (Capt), Paul Sweeney, Michael Flynn, Niall McCormack and Conor Fallon, Mark Durcan put Paul Rowland over for what seemed to the Castlebar lads to be a good try but the referee for some reason disallowed it. Despite some great pressure they failed to breach the Tuam line and then just before half time they conceded a breakaway try to Tuam. In the second half the Castlebar backs were constantly in action as Tuam got the upper hand. Despite the best efforts of Oisin O’Malley, Shane Maloney and Bernard Kennedy Tuam managed to score two more tries to win the game.
To finish off their morning the two Castlebar teams played each other in a very open keenly fought contest with Aidan Gleason’s team coming out on top.
The Castlebar squad will have gained a wealth off experience from these games and the coaches were delighted to see how well the players on both teams played and the sportsmanship they displayed. It was also great to see how well those players competing in their first game played.
Underage Registration day.
Next Saturday the club holds its registration day at the clubhouse. Everyone is welcome to come along and get involved in what is one of the highlights of the year with fun and games, a bouncy castle and loads of refreshments for all who come along. Players are asked to bring the registration fee of 30 euros and their birth cert. If a player does not have a birth cert to hand, a signed letter stating their date of birth from their parents is sufficient. Every player who registers receives a sponsored Castlebar RFC mini rugby jersey to wear with pride and keep dry during the wet days. The day is sponsored by Casey’s Ford Castlebar.
Under 18 News
Sligo 43 Castlebar 26
This league tie last season proved to be far too big a hurdle for Castlebar last year, losing the game by 86 points to seven. It was a lesson in the basics of rugby. This time it would be fair to say that with a bit more luck and a lot more team focus from Castlebar the result could have been different. Playing against a team that has talent in every line then Castlebar can be proud of the competitive outing.
There were a huge amount of big games on the day but the performance of three players in particular points to the prospect of an outstanding season. Padraic Healy, Danny Cunningham and Aidan Garvey all played above and beyond their ages. Healy is a naturally gifted out half that seams to have an abundance of time; he is quick, brave, and strong and has an appreciation of the game that will create space for those outside him. He scored two tries on the day from open play from ball won for him by a hard working pack. Danny Cunningham played at full back, he is big, athletic and pulled off the tackle of the season to inspire those around him to stage a comeback that yielded fourteen points in seven minutes.
Aidan Garvey looks to be cementing himself firmly in the front row. He carries the ball well and is constantly looking to carry the ball. Castlebar started the game in fine fashion with a lot of determined play coming from both forwards and backs. The problem with the play was that it lacked team cohesion. Nevertheless, the team went ahead with a fine try from an excellent piece of play from Ronan Conway, he is fast and skill full and probably deserved another try for his efforts.
The prospects for this team look good as there are twenty-four good players seeking fifteen places. The league itself starts properly with the visit of Westport to Castlebar on the weekend of the seventh of November
Castlebar: M Moran, I McDonagh, A Garvey, C Rogan, R Moran, D Staunton, P O’Malley, P Healy, N Byrne (Capt), M Gill, R Conway, D Cunningham, C Flynn, S Cunnane, M O’Neill, R Irwin, T Murphy, J Derrig.
Membership will be due shortly, members will be notified.
Note: all news must be given to club PRO John Mulligan on the Sunday evening/Monday morning if possible for inclusion. He can be contacted on email@example.com