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Bruff Stay Up To Complete Ulster Bank League Line-Up For 2018/19

Bruff Stay Up To Complete Ulster Bank League Line-Up For 2018/19

Bandon’s brave bid for promotion to the Ulster Bank League fell just short today as replacement Michael Carroll’s 79th-minute try secured a thrilling 24-17 play-off win for Bruff.

ULSTER BANK LEAGUE DIVISION 2C PROMOTION/RELEGATION PLAY-OFF: Saturday, May 5

BRUFF 24 BANDON 17, Kilballyowen Park
Scorers: Bruff: Tries: David O’Grady, Cillian Rea, Michael Carroll; Cons: Tony Cahill 2, David O’Grady; Pen: Tony Cahill
Bandon: Tries: Christian Mulcahy, Gearoid Crowley, Kerry Desmond; Con: Kerry Desmond

HT: Bruff 14 Bandon 7

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Bruff held onto their Division 2C place for next season in determined fashion at Kilballyowen Park, making it 15 successive years as a senior club. Initially promoted in 2004, Bruff have competed across several divisions but finished second-from-bottom in the bottom tier this term, winning seven of their 18 games.

That left Eoin Cahill’s men scrapping for their All-Ireland League lives, requiring a victory at home to buoyant Bandon in order to stay up. The west Cork outfit travelled in confident mood, having finished second in the All-Ireland Provincial League Championship following wins over Ashbourne and Instonians, and more than played their part in a play-off match of huge intensity.

Winger Christian Mulcahy’s 16th-minute try, which came from their first serious attack and a break by Kiwi flanker Conall Bromwich, shot Bandon ahead but they ended the first half 14-7 down and with second row Enda Phelan in the sin-bin.

Evergreen centre Tony Cahill converted tries from David O’Grady, who profited from a break by Liam Treacy, and Cillian Rea to give the hosts a seven-point buffer. Rea managed to barge over after some fine approach work by O’Grady, Cahill and Michael Cooke.

Despite falling further behind through a Cahill penalty, Bandon redoubled their efforts and twice scored out wide through Gearoid Crowley (64 minutes) and former Cork Constitution centre Kerry Desmond (72). Both tries were unconverted, meaning the sides were level at 17 points apiece entering the final minutes.

Extra-time looked increasingly likely in Frenchman Regis Sonnes’ final game in charge of Bandon, but tenacious Bruff had other ideas. Following winger Tracey’s run up close to the Bandon line and several drives by the pack, Michael Carroll crashed over for the decisive try, converted by O’Grady, to keep the number of Limerick club in the league at seven.

BRUFF: Graham Whelan; Brian Fanning, Jack O’Grady, Tony Cahill, Liam Treacy; David O’Grady, Cian Clifford; David Horan, John Clery, Keith Laffan, Sean Hartigan, Neilus Keogh, Cillian Rea, Odhran Ring, Danny Keogh.

Replacements: Paddy Clery, Michael Carroll, Michael Cooke, Brendan Deady, Brian Cahill.

BANDON: Olan Crowley, Christian Mulcahy, Billy Crowley, Kerry Desmond, Gearoid Crowley; Rhys Harrold, Santiago Gonzalez; Michael Murphy, Scott Kingston, Timothy Crowley, Cian Buttimer, Enda Phelan, Conall Bromwich, Ryan Hayes, Tom Ferguson.

Replacements: Aidan Slattery, Mark Phelan, Kieran Phelan, Gearoid O’Leary, Jerry Crowley.

ULSTER BANK LEAGUE – DIVISIONAL RUNDOWN:

DIVISION 1A:

Final Table

All-Ireland League champions: Lansdowne or Cork Constitution (Final, Aviva Stadium, 3pm, Sunday, May 6)

Division 1A promotion/relegation play-off winners: UCC (promoted)

Relegated: Buccaneers (automatic), St. Mary’s College (via play-offs)

Ten Division 1A clubs for next season: Lansdowne, Cork Constitution, Terenure College, Garryowen, Clontarf, Young Munster, UCD, Dublin University, Shannon, UCC

DIVISION 1B:

Final Table

Division 1B champions/Promoted: Shannon

Division 1B promotion/relegation play-off winners: City of Armagh (promoted)

Relegated: Dolphin (automatic), UL Bohemians (via play-offs)

Ten Division 1B clubs for next season: St. Mary’s College, Buccaneers, Banbridge, Ballynahinch, Old Belvedere, Naas, Ballymena, Old Wesley, Malone, City of Armagh

DIVISION 2A:

Final Table

Division 2A champions/Promoted: Malone

Division 2A promotion/relegation play-off winners: Navan (promoted)

Relegated: Corinthians (automatic), Greystones (via play-offs)

Ten Division 2A clubs for next season: Dolphin, UL Bohemians, Nenagh Ormond, Highfield, Cashel, Queen’s University, Blackrock College, Galwegians, Old Crescent, Navan

DIVISION 2B:

Final Table

Division 2B champions/Promoted: Old Crescent

Division 2B promotion/relegation play-off winners: Belfast Harlequins

Relegated: City of Derry (automatic)

Ten Division 2B clubs for next season: Corinthians, Greystones, Rainey Old Boys, MU Barnhall, Wanderers, Sunday’s Well, Skerries, Dungannon, Sligo, Belfast Harlequins

DIVISION 2C:

Final Table

Division 2C champions/Promoted: Sligo

All-Ireland Provincial League champions/Promoted: Ballina

Division 2C promotion/relegation play-off winners: Bruff

Relegated: Bective Rangers (automatic)

Ten Division 2C clubs for next season: City of Derry, Omagh, Thomond, Malahide, Midleton, Seapoint, Bangor, Tullamore, Ballina, Bruff

ALL-IRELAND PROVINCIAL LEAGUE CHAMPIONSHIP ROUND ROBIN SERIES:

Final Table

All-Ireland Provincial League champions/Promoted: Ballina

Runners-up: Bandon (lost Division 2C promotion/relegation play-off to Bruff)