Sunday 19 November 2017

Considine gets UL Bohs over the line

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Munster's Eimear Considine got the crucial second try as UL Bohemians were crowned Women's All-Ireland League champions for the first time since 2013, ending Old Belvedere's recent dominance of the competition with a 10-3 win at Donnybrook on Saturday.

It was UL's 12th league crown, adding to their 11 previous successes between 2001 and 2013, and a richly deserved triumph for Fiona Hayes and her team-mates who topped the table by 16 points.

It was an error-strewn encounter. Mike Storey's UL opened the scoring with a 16th-minute try from No 8 Chloe Pearse. After a powerful maul, Ireland Sevens international Claire Keohane, who featured prominently from scrum-half, fed Pearse on the blindside for a well-taken unconverted score.

Indeed, the table toppers' Ireland-capped players showed their class and experience: Hayes and her front-row colleagues Gill Bourke and Fiona Reidy impressed, as did wingers Considine and Liz Burke.

The second try came after a break in play for an injury to Belvedere's Jackie Shiels, entering the final quarter. UL moved the ball quickly from a scrum, across the back-line to Considine, who used her pace from the Sevens game to sprint clear and score in the corner.

The conversion was missed and Alex Denby's Belvedere side built for a strong finish, with centre Shiels firing over a penalty from in front of the posts to get them off the mark in the 68th minute.

With just four minutes left on the clock, Belvo blew a lineout opportunity when Nora Stapleton's attempted kick to the corner missed touch.

UL thumped it back downfield and seven points proved to be the winning margin for battle-hardened Bohs.

Irish Independent

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