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Under 20s fail to give us a lift


England's Harry Sloan is tackled by Stephen Gardiner of Ireland during the U20 Six Nations match at Franklin's Gardens

England's Harry Sloan is tackled by Stephen Gardiner of Ireland during the U20 Six Nations match at Franklin's Gardens

Getty Images

England's Harry Sloan is tackled by Stephen Gardiner of Ireland during the U20 Six Nations match at Franklin's Gardens

RUGBY: There was little hope of a gloomy day for Irish rugby ending on a positive note in Northampton and to compound matters Mike Ruddock's under 20s, in contention after a disastrous start, ended up with a 33-9 scoreline against England that does little justice to their efforts.

Ireland found themselves 13-0 in arrears after a disastrous opening eight minutes before they hauled themselves back into contention. Ross Byrne landed three penalties and full-back David Busby was pulled back as he was about to take possession a few metres from the line.

Ireland, down 16-9 at the break, again took control after the restart but even 14 phases of possession inside the English 22 couldn't yield a score.

Adam Byrne had a TMO decision go against him in the left corner and then England broke for Howard Packman to wrap it up before they ran in two late tries to complete a miserable day for Irish rugby.

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BOXING: Defending lightweight champion Sean McComb ousted one of the biggest threats to his crown when beating Declan Geraghty, the 2013 bantamweight champion, on a unanimous decision to advance to the semi-finals of the National Elite Championships at the National Stadium, Dublin.

Geraghty started brightly and detonated two big rights, but McComb got his timing right from the end of the first frame onwards.

Meanwhile, ex-European and EU Elite champions David Oliver Joyce and Ray Moylette both progressed to the last four on unanimous decisions over Joe Fitzpatrick and Sean Montgomery respectively.

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RUGBY: Rob Guerin was the hero at Stradbrook when his 71st-minute try secured a dramatic 19-18 victory for Shannon over Blackrock College in a re-fixed Ulster Bank League Division 1B tie. Rock opened the scoring after six minutes with a try from Jann-Simon Byrne. The visitors responded with a well-worked five-pointer from Tadhg Leader.

Shannon reduced the deficit to a minimum courtesy of a powerful drive over the line in stoppage-time by Butler, and snatched victory with the subsequent Leader conversion.

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GAELIC GAMES: Ronan Lynch helped himself to six points as Ardscoil Rís captured a third Munster Colleges' Dr Harty Cup SH title in five seasons with a facile 2-13 to 0-4 victory over Scoil na Tríonóide Naofa (Doon) in yesterday's decider.

The winners led by 0-4 to 0-2 at half-time but they produced a storming second half, capped by goals from Colin Crehan and Ian Galvin.

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Cavan's Nevin O'Donnell led by example as Cavan Institute claimed the Higher Education Corn na Mac Leinn SF title with a 1-8 to 0-5 victory over NWRC at Queen's University yesterday. A 25th minute goal from man-of-the-match Andrew Rossiter proved to be the crucial score.

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St Patrick's, Drumcondra claimed their fifth Higher Education Trench Cup SF title following a 2-16 to 2-8 win over Letterkenny IT in Belfast.

Goals from Dublin's Ciaran Kilkenny and Roscommon's Diarmuid Murtagh helped St Pat's to a 2-7 to 1-4 interval lead, with Sligo's Brian Egan netting the Letterkenny goal.

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Robbie Donnelly hit 1-9 as the St Kieran's College, Kilkenny outclassed Colaiste Eoin (Dublin) 2-14 to 0-7 in a wind-dominated Leinster Colleges' SHC Corn Ui Dhuill semi-final in Fenagh, Carlow.

Kieran's had first use of the elements and benefited from a sixth-minute goal from centre-forward Sean Morrissey. With Donnelly's accuracy punishing the Dublin side the Kilkenny college led 1-10 to 0-2 at half time.

Colaiste Eoin were unable to make any headway into the lead in the second half, with Donnelly's goal just minutes into the new half putting Kieran's out of sight to set up an all-Kilkenny final between St Kieran's and Kilkenny CBS, winners of the second semi-final over Good Counsel, New Ross.

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BASKETBALL: Ahead of their big title showdown next weekend, Killester and Demons both won on their travels in last night's Premier League. Demons, who play Vincents this afternoon in Greendale (4.0) were 102-80 winners away to Templeogue, while Robbie Clarke led the scoring for Killester in their 84-62 win over Moycullen.

Neptune's Jermaine Kamara made a welcome return from injury but it wasn't enough to avoid a second consecutive defeat for the Leesiders as they slipped up at home to Marian on a 83-87 scoreline.

Last night's other game saw Vincent's, who are challenging UL Eagles for the remaining Champions League spot, defeat Dublin Inter 74-53 in a game that saw assistant coach, Mike Trimmer record a rare three-point shot.

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TENNIS: Louk Sorensen recorded a brace of victories in the outdoor hardcourt Challenger event in Guangzhou, beating Hei Yin Andrew Li on 6-2 7-5 in the qualifying opening round before following up with a 6-2 6-2 success against Zhuo Zhang. Sorensen next faces Ruan Roelofse, with a place in the main draw at stake.

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HOCKEY: UCD snatched victory over holders Railway Union in the dying minutes in the Irish Senior Cup semi-final. Railway led twice through Kate Loyd and Sinead Dooley, which Anna O'Flanagan cancelled out each time to leave it 2-2 at the break.

With two minutes remaining Nikki Evans pounced on a rebound from a penalty corner to score the winner.

Pembroke Wanderers and Lurgan failed by a distance to reach those heights in their semi-final which extended to an extra-time silver goal period before Pembroke won 3-1 on penalty strokes.

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