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Holland The Hero Again For Cork Con

Holland The Hero Again For Cork Con

For the second week running, Johnny Holland landed a pressure kick in injury-time to guide Cork Constitution to a dramatic Division 1A victory.

This time around, Johnny Holland arrowed over a 40-metre penalty, six minutes into injury-time, to see them edge out Lansdowne 25-22 in an enthralling encounter on the Aviva Stadium’s back pitch.

Lansdowne looked to be on their way to a fourth straight league win when they led 22-8 heading into the final ten minutes, but late tries from Darragh Lyons and Scott Deasy sparked Cork Constitution’s late revival.

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Lansdowne had started the game brightly, and out-half Craig Ronaldson had an excellent opportunity to open the scoring with a close-in penalty after three minutes.

He was off target with his kick on this occasion though, and despite some good early pressure from the hosts, it was Cork Con who took the lead courtesy of a penalty from Holland after 14 minutes.

It was proving to be a tight affair for much of the opening period, but Lansdowne eventually cancelled out their opponent's advantage with a routine Ronaldson penalty in front of the posts on the half hour mark.

This was a major confidence booster for Mike Ruddock's charges, as the first try of the afternoon followed just three minutes later. The in-form Cian Aherne crossed over in the left corner following a fine move across the back-line.

Ronaldson was narrowly wide of the mark with his conversion, but he found his range once again at the end of the half, as a brace of penalties from Lansdowne's dynamic number 10 gave them a 14-3 cushion at the interval.

Lansdowne were starting to show the kind of form that had put them top of the Division 1A table and when Aherne broke free for his second five-pointer just three minutes after the restart, things were starting to look very ominous for the Corkmen.

A try by Niall O'Driscoll after 51 minutes did cut into the Lansdowne lead, but a fourth Ronaldson penalty gave the Dubliners what looked like an insurmountable lead.

The Temple Hill outfit had other ideas, however, as a converted try by full-back Lyons on the right wing meant that the margin was down to seven with just eight minutes left to play.

This was followed up almost immediately by a try from Munster ace Deasy after a terrific kick through by young number 10 Holland, who was on hand to add the extras.

Holland’s successful conversion brought Brian Walsh’s men level. Ronaldson had an opportunity to put Lansdowne back ahead on the stroke of 80 minutes, but he was unable to take his chance and it was left to the outstanding Holland to have the final say.

Referee: Mark Patton (IRFU)