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Gorey Girls Crowned National X7s Champions For Second Year In A Row

Gorey Girls Crowned National X7s Champions For Second Year In A Row

The Under-18 Girls national X7s finals took place last week at Donnybrook. Four teams from each province qualified for the finals through a series of regional blitzes. It was a real festival of rugby with Gorey Community School taking the spoils for the second year on the trot.

Now in its third year, this tournament is the premier showcase for girls rugby at schools level. Ireland Sevens internationals Chloe Blackmore and Louise Galvin were on hand at Donnybrook to present the trophies to the winning teams.

The skill-sets of the players has been growing year on year. A number of players have represented their schools on at least two occasions and even gone on to play for Ireland.
With 24 pool matches running over the morning, every school played three pool matches before the highest and second-placed highest qualified for the play-offs in the Cup and Plate.
It was an all-Leinster affair in the first semi-final with defending champions Gorey Community School, captained by Natasja Behan, taking on Tullow Community School. The cup holders proved the stronger and booked their place in the final with a determined display.

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In the other cup semi final, Presentation Convent Thurles saw off a strong challenge from Westport’s Sacred Heart School as the game went to extra-time.

In the Plate semi-finals, Sacred Heart Tullamore, led by Megan Burns who played for the Ireland Under-18 Girls Sevens team recently, emerged victorious over Ard Scoil Ballinasloe, while St. Kevin’s, Dunlavin and Enniskillen went toe to toe with Enniskillen booking their final place.
The rain had firmly set in at this stage of the day and so both finals were played with a very slippery ball.
The Plate was won by a strong Sacred Heart Tullamore outfit, who won the inaugural tournament two years ago.

The Cup final was a fiercely competitive match with neither Presentation Thurles nor Gorey Community School giving an inch. Presentation Thurles had brought a number of supporters with them and they cheered loudly for their team from the stand.  

The game went to extra-time with Gorey Community School coming good to retain their prized national title. A delighted team brought the cup back to the school for the second year in a row.