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Student Sides Prepare For Colours Clash

Student Sides Prepare For Colours Clash

The 58th Colours match between UCD and Dublin University takes place at Donnybrook this Thursday evening (kick-off 6.30pm). As well as Colours bragging rights, there are AIB League Division 2 points on the line.

The first Colours match took place back in 1952 at Lansdowne Road and, despite the advent of professionalism in rugby, this annual battle is still as keenly fought and as important as it was back in the 1950s.

UCD have had 33 victories, while Dublin University (Trinity College) have secured  20 wins to date with four matches drawn.

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Indeed, Trinity won their second Colours in three years when the sides met last season at Donnybrook. An injury-time conversion from winger Chris Jebb saw them take a dramatic 20-18 victory.

For the players it remains one of the highlights of their rugby year. The fact that the match is also an AIB League Division 2 fixture this year is an additional incentive.

The Colours match has traditionally been an opportunity for both teams to display their running and ball-handling skills and this year should be no exception and a feast of attractive rugby should be enjoyed by all.

The Dublin city-based University has nine new Colours in their squad, including five in the starting line-up. Trinity will be captained by flanker Johnny Iliff.

Both University outfits ply their trade in the AIB League Division 2. Trinity are currently in sixth place on 28 points, with UCD in tenth on 24 points.

Significantly, if UCD win their game in hand they will go level with Trinity with three games to go, which just goes to show how tight the margins are going to be in this year’s historic match-up.

UCD: Michael Twomey (St. Michael’s College); Terry Jones (Terenure College), Andy Cummiskey (St. Michael’s College), Eoghan Conran (CBS Naas), Tom Fletcher (Clongowes Wood College SJ); Niall Earls (De La Salle Wicklow), Rob Shanley (St. Michael’s College); John A Lee (Terenure College), Conor Geoghegan (St. Michael’s College), Brian Hall (MSJ Roscrea), Ciaran Ruddock (Bishopston CS), Brian Cawley (Blackrock College), Shane Grannel (CBC Monkstown), Kevin Croke (CPC Kilcullen), Matt Nagle (Glenstal Abbey) (capt).

Replacements (from): Conor Mitchell (Belvedere College SJ), Risteard Byrne (Terenure College), Arthur Houlihan (Clongowes Wood College SJ), Rory Allwright (Sandford Park), Peter Du Toit (King’s Hospital), Richie Bent (St. Mary’s College).

DUBLIN UNIVERSITY: Andy Wallace (Terenure College); Neil Hanratty (Gonzaga College SJ), Conor Colclough (Belvedere College SJ), Conor Mills (Newpark CS), Colin Murphy (Belvedere College SJ); Dave Joyce (CC Roscrea), Mick McLoughlin (Clongowes Wood College SJ); Tristan Goodbody (CUS), Mark Murdock (CBS Monkstown), James Gethings (Gonzaga College), Scott LaValla (Budd Bay HS, Olympia, WA, USA), Pierce Byrne (CC Roscrea), Alan Mathews (Kilkenny College), Johnny Iliff (St. Colman’s College, Newry) (capt), Brian Coyle (Clongowes Wood College SJ)

Replacements (from): Craig Telford (King’s Hospital), Paddy McCabe (Belvedere College SJ), Max Waters (St. Andrew’s College), Dominic Gallagher (Rathmore GS Dunmurry), Tim McCoy (Belvedere College SJ), Richard Brady (Foyle and Londonderry), Dermot O’Riordan (Castleknock College).

Referee: Kevin Beggs (IRFU)