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Fox brothers dig Skerries out of a hole

The brothers Fox -- Eoghan and Sean -- struck for three tries between them as Skerries Community College recovered from a 10-5 half-time deficit to beat Sandford Park 17-15 in a nailbiting first-round clash at Ashbourne yesterday, writes Des Berry.

Sandford gave as good as they got. Their half-time lead was the result of a try from flanker Lee Deighton and the kicking of full-back Rob Foley.

Eoghan Fox scored a brace of tries before Sean added a decisive third; Sandford centre Elliott Finn-Phillips cut the deficit to two points late on, but the conversion was missed.

CBC Monkstown blasted from the blocks to score two tries by centres James Kearns and Sam Hanley, both converted by fly-half Mark Rogers, in the first seven minutes. That built the platform for their 25-12 win over a somewhat unlucky High School at Kilternan yesterday.

The losers brought it back to 14-12 only to be denied a strong claim for a try near half-time when their scrum-half Conn Loane seemed to win the race to the ball. The referee thought otherwise.

From there, Rogers took CBC clear with a try and two penalties in the second half, rubbing salt into an open wound as they ran the clock down to progress to a quarter-final shot at Catholic University School (CUS).

Certainly, CUS will be no one's fodder this year. Two early tries from wing Colm Driver and No 8 Ryan Sheedy -- they both crossed the line twice -- gave CUS the confidence to topple St Andrew's College 37-0 at Railway Union.

Presentation Bray took advantage of their superior pace out wide as Harry Barrett -- who went over twice -- and Cormac O'Donoghue struck for tries. They built up a lead which their stonewall defence stubbornly protected in a 19-13 win over Newpark Comprehensive at Ballycorus.

Irish Independent