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AIB League – Cork Con Take Over The Leadership

AIB League – Cork Con Take Over The Leadership

16/03/02.There were wins for Cork Constitution, Garryowen, Clontarf, St Mary’s & UCD while Shannon and Buccaneers ended up all square in Thomond Park

Drama aplenty in the AIB League with leaders Shannon coming from behind to draw 11-11 with Buccaneers at Thomond Park, Garryowen coming from behind to win 32-13 in Eaton Park and Mark McHugh landing an injury time conversion to snatch victory from DLSP in a quite extraordinary afternoon in Templeville Road.

Elsewhere Cork Constitution won 39-8 against Terenure in Temple Hill
and Co Carlow scored five second half tries in Belfield to gain a valuable bonus point talthough losing 41-33 to UCD.

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A combination of pack power and the artistry of Ronan O’Gara proved too much for Terenure in Cork. The home pack, in which Mick O’Driscoll was simply immense, dominated throughout and O’Gara pinned Terenure back time and again with perfect line kicking. Con led 14-8 at the break, their opening try coming from Derek Dillon while Anthony Horgan added a brace in the second half.

Shannon gave up
top spot when they could only manage a draw with Buccaneers in Limerick. They trailed 11-8 at half time and then needed a Tommy Cregan penalty to share the spoils. For the second consecutive week Cregan scored all his side’s points.

Clontarf gave Young Munster the expected hammering, winning 37-10, Clem Casey and Finbar Hogan scoring the Munster tries in the closing stages. Two Ollie Wichester tries in the opening half and a third from James Downey gave Clontarf an 18 point half time lead and they added two more in the second half to gain a bonus point.

Ballymena led Garryowen 10-3 at the break in Eaton Park but then had no answer to Garryowen’s second half power play. The visitors had tries from Pat Humphreys, Peter Malone and Billy Treacy and deep in injury time they secured an invaluable bonus point when substitute Shane Leahy crashed over.In Belfield, Co Carlow looked dead and buried when they trailed by 22 points. They then went on to score five second half tries and still ended up losing 41-33. The turning point for them came with the introduction of veteran Leonard Peavoy who came on in the second half to totally boss the game and almost turn things in Carlow’s favour.

Galwegiand ended Blackrock’s slim semi-final hopes with a 40-18 win in Galway and Lansdowne lost 23-17 at home to Dungannon.

In Division Two, Old Crescent came out on top in the Limerick derby beating UL Bohemians 18-3 but Barnhall were unable to take advantage when they went down 10-3 to Midleton in Towns Park.

Greystones maintained their march to Division Two with a 68-3 win over Richmond in Dr Hickey Park. Dublin University won 24-19 in Bangor and Old Wesley won 20-12 in Banbridge.