There were plenty of thrills and spills up and down the country on Saturday as the third round of the AIB Cup gripped supporters and confirmed that the trophy might just stay in Munster for another year.
AIB CUP – THIRD ROUND: Saturday, January 10
BECTIVE RANGERS 9 GARRYOWEN 15, Donnybrook
Scorers: Bective Rangers: Pens: Cathal Connolly 3
Garryowen: Tries: Michael Sherry, Paul Neville; Con: Conor Kilroy; Pen: Conor Kilroy
Garryowen, beaten quarter-finalists last year, held out for a deserved third round victory over Bective at Donnybrook in the AIB Cup on Saturday afternoon.
First half tries from Michael Sherry and captain Paul Neville propelled the Limerick outfit to a 12-6 interval lead.
Cathal Connolly kept Bective in touch from penalty kicks, and although playing against a strong wind in the second half, Connolly made it three from three with Bective’s only score after the break.
However, a 77th minute Conor Kilroy penalty kick cemented Garryowen’s quarter-final status.
Click here to listen to an interview with Garryowen’s try-scoring captain Paul Neville.
YOUNG MUNSTER 27 UCD 26, Tom Clifford Park
Scorers: Young Munster: Tries: Stephen Carey, Derek Corcoran, Brendan Guilfoyle; Cons: Mark Connolly 3; Pens: Mark Connolly 2
UCD: Tries: Mark Flanagan, Cian Ahern, Simon Gillespie; Con: Fergus McFadden; Pens: Fergus McFadden 3
Three converted tries steered Young Munster into the AIB Cup quarter-finals for the first time in their history at Tom Clifford Park.
The Cookies clung on to a one-point lead for the final quarter, showing great spirit to beat their Division One rivals.
Three penalties from Leinster’s Fergus McFadden saw UCD nip into a 16-13 lead late on in the first half.
The sides swapped four tries in the second half and crucially Mark Connolly converted Munsters’ touchdowns from captain Derek Corcoran and Brendan Guilfoyle.
BUCCANEERS 31 UL BOHEMIANS 13, Dubarry Park
Scorers: Buccaneers: Tries: Sean Carey 2, Kieran O’Gorman, Daniel Riordan, Simon Rolleston; Cons: Alan Gaughan 3
UL Bohemians: Try: Tommy O’Donnell; Con: Aidan McNulty; Pens: Aidan McNulty 2
Buccaneers booked their place in the last-eight of the AIB Cup by avenging a recent league defeat to UL Bohemians at Dubarry Park.
Buccs led 14-13 at half-time thanks to converted tries from Sean Carey and Kieran O’Gorman, with Tommy O’Donnell (try) and Aidan McNulty (conversion and two penalties) keeping Bohs in range.
But the introductions of Connacht players Conor O’Loughlin and Daniel Riordan made a significant difference for the home side, who raced clear thanks to tries from Carey, Riordan and Simon Rolleston.
BRUFF 10 CORK CONSTITUTION 22, Kilballyowen Park
Scorers: Bruff: Try: Alan Bourke; Con: Brian Cahill; Pen: Brian Cahill
Cork Constitution: Tries: Richie Lane 2, Andrew O’Brien; Cons: Richie Lane 2; Pen: Richie Lane
Two late tries from Richie Lane and replacement Andrew O’Brien helped Cork Constitution seal their place in the AIB Cup quarter-finals at Kilballyowen Park.
Playing with the wind, the newly-crowned Munster Senior Cup champions established an 8-0 half-time lead with right winger Lane kicking a penalty and scoring a 34th minute try.
Bruff hit the front with Alan Bourke helping himself to a try and Brian Cahill kicking five points, but those two breakaway tries ended the Division Two side’s hopes of an upset.