Thursday 14 November 2019

Byrne gets nod as Terenure aim to return to winning ways

ENERGIA ALL-IRELAND LEAGUE

'Leaders Cork Con face Dublin University in a repeat of one of last season's semi-finals, which ended in a convincing 23-3 triumph for the Munster men.' (stock photo)
'Leaders Cork Con face Dublin University in a repeat of one of last season's semi-finals, which ended in a convincing 23-3 triumph for the Munster men.' (stock photo)

Terenure College and UCC's winning starts to the season both came to an end last week, so this is sure to be a keenly-contested encounter as second plays third in the Energia AIL Division 1A.

Terenure did the double over the Cork students last term, including a 39-29 bonus point success on home turf. For today's rematch, Matthew Byrne is promoted from the Terenure bench to replace Jake Swaine at full-back and Mark O'Neill and former Connacht half-back Conor McKeon will direct operations behind the scrum. The forward changes are Saba Meunargia, Stephen Caffrey and Niall Lalor.

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UCC head coach Brian Walsh is able to select talented Munster prospects Jack O'Sullivan and John Hodnett in the back row, with impressive Australian Rory Suttor switching to the second row. Eoin Monahan continues at out-half in James Taylor's injury-enforced absence.

Leaders Cork Con face Dublin University in a repeat of one of last season's semi-finals, which ended in a convincing 23-3 triumph for the Munster men. The defending champions have climbed to the top of the table with their latest win decided by a controversial penalty try during the final minutes against Terenure.

Cork's enviable knack of winning tight games will come under further pressure from an ever-ambitious Dublin University side that has hit form in recent weeks. Back-to-back victories over Garryowen and Lansdowne have Trinity on the rise again.

Their back-three is rejigged with Ronan Quinn returning on the left wing, while Micheal O'Kennedy is joined by the Leinster-capped Rowan Osborne at half-back. Ben Nel, Joseph McCarthy and Paddy Nulty are brought in up front.

There's a Dublin derby at Castle Avenue as UCD, who came from behind to draw with Young Munster last week, take a strong squad to Clontarf, which includes the Leinster Academy quartet of Gavin Mullin, Tommy O'Brien, Paddy Patterson and Charlie Ryan.

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