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Keeshan Inspires Dolphin To Encouraging Win

Keeshan Inspires Dolphin To Encouraging Win

Out-half and captain Barry Keeshan delivered a fine kicking display as he slotted 22 points to help Dolphin to an excellent win over Blackrock College at Stradbrook.

The Cork side, coached by Welshman Steve Ford, made a huge turnaround from their 35-0 defeat to Young Munster three weeks ago and delivered a clever display in this one-sided Ulster Bank League encounter.

Tries from winger Cian Bohane (10 minutes) and centre Danny Barnes (75) sealed an important victory for Dolphin, which moves them off the bottom of the table after Garryowen's victory over Shannon had pushed them down to eighth.

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Barry Keeshan and his team-mates hit the front after Blackrock full-back Niall Morris was sin-binned for slowing the ball down at the ruck. The resulting penalty gave the visitors an early 3-0 lead.

Seven minutes later, Bohane took advantage of some slack 'Rock passing to intercept the ball in his own half and with no covering full-back in sight, the winger was able to touch down under the posts.

The Dolphin back-line continued to ask questions of Blackrock. Try scorer Bohane initiated a quick move, involving fellow winger Paul Hurley and centres Eric Moloney and Danny Barnes, however the final pass was knocked on.

In the closing ten minutes of the first half, things suddenly started to click for the home side. A nice move between out-half Darragh Fitzpatrick and lock Michael Carroll almost paved the way for a try, but Carroll's final pass was snapped up by a Dolphin player.

'Rock centre Rob Keogh managed to slot two penalties before half-time, bringing the scoreline to 13-9 and adding some much-needed momentum to the hosts' play.

Yet, Dolphin came out the smarter side in the second half with Keeshan kicking a fine drop goal and two penalties to put further distance between the teams.

Dolphin capitalised on numerous 'Rock errors at the breakdown and with a patient build-up to their play, they were thoroughly deserving of their lead.

The home side seemed to drop their heads coming into the final quarter and their sluggish defence allowed centre Barnes to blitz the line, dot down and seal the away win.

In the last minute, 'Rock moved the ball out the back-line and winger David Rowan found space to score a consolation try in the corner. Keogh added the conversion to leave it at 32-16.

The result got Dolphin back to winning ways after two tough defeats and ensured that they gained ground on Blackrock in the bottom half of the table.

Referee: Michael Black (IRFU)