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Garryowen Succumb To Impressive Mary’s

Garryowen Succumb To Impressive Mary’s

A fast start from St. Mary’s College finished off Garryowen in their floodlit All-Ireland League tie at Templeville Road on Saturday night.

Former UCC full-back Gavin Dunne posted penalties in the second and sixth minutes to give St. Mary's College a firm foothold on a heavy pitch.

It got even better for St. Mary's when centre Stephen Grissing and Dunne combined to send Ireland Under-20 winger Darren Hudson away from the clutches of Conan Doyle and over for his fifth try of the Division 1A campaign.

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Dunne tagged on the conversion from the right to make it 13-0 in as many minutes.

Garryowen were kept outside the danger zone, out-half Declan Cusack coming up short from near halfway in what would have been some sort of booster.

Then, an expert take from Rhys Ruddock at the tail of the lineout forced the Light Blues into the concession of another penalty, ruthlessly dispatched by Dunne.

A mix-up in the Garryowen defence was then seized on by winger Paul Gillespie. The recycle came quickly enough for centre Mark Sexton to exploit the outside shoulder of Doyle for St. Mary's second five-pointer. Dunne's conversion stretched it out to 23-0 just past the half hour mark.

Referee Paul Haycock had to speak to Ruddock for an infringement at ruck time ahead of Cusack striking his second penalty from the left, approaching the break.

When Ruddock became involved with lock Mark Melbourne in a scuffle, he was shown the yellow card.

St. Mary's looked in trouble in the last phase of first half play until captain Paul Nash hammered Melbourne in a tackle for a 23-3 advantage at the interval.

Garryowen emerged re-energised. They moved the ball fluently against the 14 men. Cusack split the posts again in the 46th minute.

Whatever momentum they were getting was undone when number 8 David Sherry was sin-binned for slowing down ruck ball.

Dunne stroked home his third penalty and followed it with his fourth from a destructive scrum and number 8 Hugh Hogan's kick downfield.

A triple substitution from Garryowen added punch to their attack. They looked certain to score until Hudson broke their rhythm with a good old-fashioned hack downfield to relieve pressure.

The Dubliners stood firm for an ultimately comfortable win, their third on the trot in Division 1A. The victory also saw Nash collect the Shay Deering trophy afterwards, which the two clubs compete for whenever they meet.

Referee: Paul Haycock (IRFU)