Wednesday 24 January 2018

Trinity pile on title woe for rivals

Dublin University 31
UCD 22

Trinity stunned UCD to regain the Colours and deprive their old rivals of the Division 2 title, a 100pc league record and a perfect send-off for retiring director of rugby John McClean.

Ballynahinch were the big winners, leapfrogging the students to claim the title after beating Old Wesley. Ballynahinch and Belfast Harlequins will join them in Division 1B next season, while Bective will play off with Bruff.

Already-promoted UCD started well with winger Terry Jones scoring after three minutes. Precise kicking from Colours debutant James O'Donoghue kept Trinity within a point, until a fluent move from the UCD backs yielded another Jones try on 19 minutes. However, Ian Hirst's try for Trinity helped them into a 16-15 half-time lead.

Trinity started the second half with aplomb, scoring a try through Pierce Byrne.

A superb solo try from Andy Cummiskey gave UCD some hope with ten minutes left, but Trinity extinguished that hope with a penalty try awarded on 75 minutes.

'Hinch beat Wesley 35-23 at Ballymacairn park to take full advantage, while Ballymena's 48-11 win over Terenure saw them comfortably up. Belfast Harlequins beat Malone 34-6 to ensure their promotion, while Bective beat Clonakilty 19-15. Old Crescent face a play-off with Banbridge to stay in the division.

There was a dramatic final day in Division 3 where City of Derry claimed the title from under the noses of Seapoint who slipped at Banbridge.

trinity -- J O'Donoghue; N Hanratty, C Wade (C Colclough 68), T McCoy, S Hanratty; D Joyce (P McCabe 71), M McLoughlin; I Hirst, T O'Mahony, J Gethings (S Bell 65), C MacDonnell, P Byrne, S La Valla, D Gallagher (A Mathews 54), J Iliff.

UCD -- M Twomey; T Jones, A Cummiskey, D McSharry, T Fletcher; J Thornton (N Earls 64), R Shanley; J A Lee, R Byrne, B Hall, B Cawley, M Flanagan, S Granell (D Doyle 58), D Kenny, K Croke (R Bent 67).

Ref -- S McDowell

Irish Independent

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