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Irish Rugby TV: Cork Con Under-20s Regain Fraser McMullen Cup

Irish Rugby TV: Cork Con Under-20s Regain Fraser McMullen Cup

The Fraser McMullen Cup has taken up residence at Temple Hill for the second time in three years after the Cork Constitution Under-20s overcame UCD 38-14 in last Sunday’s final in Portlaoise.

The first half was a tentative affair as both sides probed for openings. Cork Constitution, who lifted the trophy for the first time in 2014, were showing an advantage at scrum time, and controlled their own ball well at lineout.

The Leesiders took an early lead with a penalty from their Ireland Under-20 scrum half John Poland after just four minutes. UCD missed a penalty chance on 10 minutes, but took the lead with a 23rd minute try when Callum Lawson put full back Matthew Gilsenan in at the posts. Jack O’Donnell added the extras for 7-3.
Poland missed a penalty opportunity before Con scored a great try when second row Sean O’Leary went over in the corner after a storming run. Poland missed the difficult conversion, but the Munster side went in at half-time with an 8-7 advantage.

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Poland added a penalty on the hour mark, and the decisive score came 10 minutes later when the Leesiders’ scrum, which was by now dominating, forced a penalty try from a five-metre scrum. Poland’s conversion was a formality, and his side were 18-7 to the good. 

Jamie Murphy landed a penalty for 21-7 and when Con forced another 5 metre scrum, scrum half Poland scored an unconverted try for 26-7. UCD had a player sin-binned in the 70th minute and Murphy scored a try two minutes later, which Poland again converted for 33-7.
In the final minutes of a thoroughly enjoyable contest, Sam Kennedy for Constitution and UCD’s U-20 international flanker Will Connors scored tries, to close out the scoring and leave Constitution as champions on a 38-14 scoreline.
Greg Barrett and Gordon Black of the IRFU were on hand at the midlands venue to present the Fraser McMullen trophy and medals to Cork Con captain Rory Horgan and his team-mates.

CORK CONSTITUTION U-20: S Daly; S Gray, M Clune, R Horgan, J Murphy; E Lacey, J Poland; L Walsh, D Coughlan, G Roche, C Barry, S O’Leary, R Walsh, D Walsh, E Mintern.

Replacements: J Tierney, R Nyhan, D Fitzgerald, C Murphy, K Daly, J Ahern, C O’Brien.

UCD U-20: M Gilsenan; O O’Meara, C Lawson, J O’Donnell, A Doyle; C Mulcahy, D Reilly; T Costigan, T Foley, J Glynn, D Lavelle, D Coyle, A Delaney, J Brennan, G Barrett.

Replacements: K White, S McGivern, J Regan, T Treacy, J Binchy, J Guy, C Cregan.

Referee: Jonny Erskine (IRFU)