Props cut loose as Monkstown back with bang
The commentator's curse. How often have you heard a commentator on TV praise someone only for the player to muck up the next play?
Well that's how I felt after last week's piece in which I lauded the creation and success of the All-Ireland Junior Cup, only for three clubs to then concede walkovers in last Saturday's first round.
Three of the four Leinster clubs advanced to the next round, with Clondalkin the only opening day casualty when they came unstuck in Bangor, going under 23-10 to last season's beaten finalists.
Enniscorthy were one of the recipients of the walkovers when Dromore from Co Down turned up at Ross Road with only 14 players and conceded the tie, although a friendly fixture did ensue.
Monkstown enjoyed a successful return to the national tournament they last participated in way back in 2006 as the beat Muskerry from Co Cork 41-16 at home in Sydney Parade.
The Dublin 4 outfit bagged six tries in cruising to victory with centre Bill Duggan, full-back Mick Twomey and loose-head prop Aaron O'Callaghan getting each a try in the opening half as the hosts led 19-9 at the break.
There was no let up from the home side on the resumption as tighthead prop Cian Carroll, replacement prop forward Hugh O'Donnell and out-half Pete Condon all dotted down, while winger Joe D'Arcy chipped in with 11 points from the boot.
Ashbourne travelled to Westport and made their tournament debut a winning one as they beat their hosts 29-9.
Playing into a strong breeze in the first half the Meath visitors led 15-9 at the interval thanks to tries from flanker Mark Rooney and centre Sean Kent.
Having established control of the tie Ashbourne embellished the win with a second-half touchdown from No 8 Simon Deevy as well as being awarded a penalty try.
The draw for the second round was made on Wednesday and is as follows with games to be played on Saturday, November 21:
Instonians v St Senan's
Enniscorthy v Ashbourne
Bangor v Monkstown
Clonmel v Clogher Valley
Meanwhile, the Leinster League resumes tomorrow with action in Division 1A, and leaders Enniscorthy travel to Gordon Park in Kingswood to play third-placed Clondalkin where they have endured torrid tests over the past two seasons.
On both occasions the Wexford side eked out narrow wins at one the toughest venues in the province at which to get a result, and tomorrow's battle promises to be equally close.
Newcomers Gorey are the surprise early season second-placed team and they will fancy their chances of consolidating that success when bottom side Suttonians are the visitors to their Clonattin home.
Fourth-placed De La Salle Palmerston welcome Monkstown to Kirwan Park with both sides level on points and craving the win that will keep one or the other in touch with the title contenders.
In the final game Ashbourne host Kilkenny in a repeat of the 2014 Bank of Ireland Provincial Towns Cup final that the home side won after extra-time.
This time around, though, both teams will be intent on victory to propel them out of the relegation zone.