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Three-Try ‘Nure Hit Back To Win

Three-Try ‘Nure Hit Back To Win

Terenure College overcame three sin-binnings and scored two early second half tries to swing this feisty Ulster Bank League Division 1B encounter in their favour.

Terenure recovered from a lacklustre first half display at Lakelands Park to win their 16th consecutive league game, while Corinthians drop to third place after Buccaneers' bonus point win over Blackrock College.

An early David Panter try gave the visitors a deserved lead as they took the game to the Dubliners with strong forward play and controlled set pieces.

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The Galway team though were unable to take advantage of Robbie Smyth's sin-binning and were punished when Mark O'Neill converted his own score to put the hosts 7-5 ahead at half-time.

And he was on hand to convert tries from his brother Kevin O'Neill and prop Gary Hamilton after the interval as 'Nure took control at 21-5.

Following Robert Duke's sin-binning, Corinthians captain Finn Gormley converted Donnchadh Phelan's try to give them hope of a comeback.

Despite Alex Dunlop becoming the third 'Nure player to go in the bin, the result – unlike Corinthians' hold on second spot – was all but assured.

Having wrapped up the league crown a week earlier, Terenure were looking to maintain their perfect record by extending their winning sequence to 16 matches.

Corinthians, meanwhile, were out to spoil the party and seeking to avenge a 57-10 drubbing by 'Nure back in November.

That day the newly-crowned champions notched up six tries as they ruthlessly dismantled the Galway side, who themselves had been undefeated up until that point.

Since then the Dublin club has brushed aside all challenges to claim the title, while Corinthians have experienced a recent dip in form with two defeats in their last three games.

This poor run has let Buccaneers in to challenge for second place and the Connacht outfit knew anything other than victory could allow the Athlone side to overtake them.

Kick-off was at the slightly later time of 4pm to accommodate the Fraser McMullen Cup quarter-final between the Terenure and Bruff Under-20 sides which 'Nure won 32-7.

In the senior game, it was determined visitors who made the better start and drew first blood when young full-back Panter dived over on the left in the sixth minute.

Although Gormley missed his conversion attempt, the Galway club continued to press 'Nure, who wore their changed black strip, deep inside their own half.

Corinthians pegged the home side back with their powerful forward play and tactical kicking game, which forced Terenure into making several uncharacteristic errors.

And on 22 minutes 'Nure's frustration boiled over when hooker Smyth was yellow card for infringing at the ruck. But despite being a man down, James Blaney's men kept the score at 5-0.

That resilience paid off in the 35th minute when out-half O'Neill dummied a pass to go inside and under the posts before converting his own try to put 'Nure ahead.

And within two minutes of the restart, the Dublin side crossed again through scrum half O'Neill off a breakdown. His brother Mark converted to increase the lead to 14-5.

The tide had now turned firmly in Terenure's favour and on 52 minutes loosehead Hamilton powered over off a lineout ball to give his team a 16-point lead.

The visitors struck back after Duke's sin-binning on the hour mark when number 8 Phelan drove over from a rolling maul. The extras from Gormley made it 21-12.

Dunlop became 'Nure's third player to go in the bin on 76 minutes. But even with 14 men, O'Neill missed a penalty kick at goal in the game's final action.

Referee: Gary Conway (IRFU)