Saturday 1 October 2016

Waterpark set sights on another double

Published 11/03/2016 | 02:30

Waterpark’s triumphant U-16s
Waterpark’s triumphant U-16s
The club’s O’Donoghue brothers David, Nick and Jack

The Bank of Ireland Munster U-18 and U-16 Clubs Cup competitions are reaching a climax with Waterpark set to defend their U-16 title against Bandon on St Patrick's Day along with the U-18 finalists at Thomond Park Stadium.

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Waterpark's U-16s will be competing for a three in a row title.

"The more the competition went on the stronger the team has evolved," said club youth officer David Dawson

"The final is going to be a very tough match. That said, it's a great opportunity for Waterpark and the lads are relishing the opportunity of playing in Thomond Park."

The Waterford club will also feature in this weekend's U-18 semi final against neighbours Dungarvan with the winner set to face Bruff, who last weekend overcame Dolphin to book their place in the final.

"We've met Dungarvan on numerous occasions at various age grade levels and the two sides have always been very evenly contested with just one score separating them," added Dawson.

Waterpark last won the underage double, when it was graded U-17 and U-19, in 2010/11 - when current Munster back-row Jack O'Donoghue captained the U-17 side.

O'Donoghue was this week named on Joe Schmidt's Ireland squad to face Italy and Dawson said the club are very proud.

"When Waterpark did the double that year with Jack on the U-17s, his brother David was on the U-19s. His younger brother Nick is on our U-18s and will be playing a big part at the weekend," he said.

"We are very proud of Jack having witnessed his progression and development.

"As chairman of the youths section in Waterpark, I think the real story has been the success of the youth competition format which was introduced this season. Great credit must go to Munster rugby secretary Joe Murphy for driving through the change and to Ralph O'Leary, competitions secretary for organising the committee which has revitalised youth rugby across the province."

"All clubs have benefited by the number of matches that they have played and I suppose the end result hopefully will be that we continue to improve and produce players like Jack O'Donoghue for Munster and Ireland."

Meanwhile, Kanturk defeated Douglas-Carrigaline 20-19 last weekend to qualify for the semi final of the BOI Munster U-18 Bowl competition. They host Waterford City tomorrow as they look to secure a place in the final.

An impressive 50-7 win for Ballincollig over Fermoy secured a semi-final place for the Cork side. They travel to Listowel this weekend with the winners securing the second place in the final.

Muskerry reached the final of the BOI Munster U-16 Bowl following a 13-12 win over Thurles. They will face the winners of Kilfeacle & District or Thomond in the final.

The two BOI Munster U-18 Plate semi-finals took place last weekend. Old Christians booked their spot in the decider by defeating Killarney/Castleisland 32-10 while Tralee overcame Young Munster 17-14.

Clonakilty and Bantry Bay battled it out to secure a place in the final of the BOI Munster U-16 Plate. Clonakilty defeated their neighbours 21-14 and will meet the winners of the second semi-final between Kinsale and Richmond-St Marys-Shannon.

Irish Independent

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