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O’Brien Hat-Trick Spurs Clontarf On To Victory

O’Brien Hat-Trick Spurs Clontarf On To Victory

Clontarf ended a run of three straight AIB League defeats as a hat-trick of tries from Niall O’Brien helped propel them past Galwegians at Crowley Park on Saturday afternoon.

AIB LEAGUE: DIVISION ONE: Saturday, February 22

GALWEGIANS 13 CLONTARF 25, Crowley Park

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Scorers: Galwegians: Try: John Cleary; Con: Cormac O’Beirne; Pens: Robert O’Beirn 2
Clontarf: Tries: Niall O’Brien 3; Cons: Daragh O’Shea 2; Pens: Daragh O’Shea 2

Niall O’Brien, the former Connacht winger, was in impressive form as the north Dubliners got their bid to reach the Division One semi-finals back on track.

Galwegians failed to make use of a first half wind advantage as they trailed by 7-6 at half-time.

Eamonn Molloy’s side, who lost to Ballynahinch in the AIB Cup last weekend, went 3-0 up thanks to a Robert O’Beirn penalty.

But the full-back missed his second shot at the posts and Clontarf hit the front midway through the half.

Breaking out of their half, Andy Wood’s men showed good patience and ball-handling ability before O’Brien was freed up for a run-in under the posts.

Team captain Daragh O’Shea converted and ‘Wegians used the wind to good effect in the closing stages of the half to set up O’Beirn’s second successful penalty.

Two more O’Shea penalties and an intercept try from O’Brien (after 60 minutes) saw ‘Tarf assert themselves on the scoreboard.

They did lose prop Adrian Clarke to the sin-bin for taking a player out but they soaked up anything the hosts could through at them before a neat, reverse pass put O’Brien over for his third score on 80 minutes.

O’Shea converted and ‘Wegians blasted back in injury-time through winger John Cleary, who showed off his enviable pace to round six would-be tacklers on the way to scoring a mesmeric try. Cormac O’Beirne converted it but time was up.