Match Report Munster J1 Division 3 – Abbeyfeale vs. Ballincollig RFC
The recent rain left their professionally drained pitch still a bit soggy and spongy. The persistent light rain didn’t contribute to the match either.
Straight from the start of the match Ballincollig played a very controlled and disciplined rugby. They went through their phases all the time only to be denied short of the line due to the miserable conditions.
A miscommunication lead to an interception by Abbeyfeale and the defense was only just able to deny the try scorer to score under the posts, the resulting conversion was unsuccessful about 15 minutes into play.
But Ballincollig recovered well from this set back straight from the restart. Again they kept possession and went through the phases, bringing them ever closer to the opponents try line. The hard work paid finally off when they outnumbered Abbeyfeale’s defense wide on the far side, seeing Rob Foolkes racing over the white-wash and Denis Galvin kicking a successful conversion.
Ballincollig were hungry for more and performed the same disciplined routine as before, leading to nearly the same move on the far side, but this time it was Kevin Lynch who carried the ball over the line just 7 minutes after the first try. However, this one remained unconverted.
Ballincollig dominated the home team entirely and again they camped at Abbeyfeale’s try line. This surge saw a missed attempt for a drop goal by Denis Galvin. But Abbeyfeale was literally incapable to get out of their own 22 and seeing the Ballincollig 1st XV coming ever closer again to their try line. Paul Daly made a break from 5 metres, but was held up with the ball. The resulting scrum 5 metres out gave him another attempt, but again he was held up over the line. The next attempt from the resulting scrum saw him finally shaking off the attempted tackle and he crashed over the line; the try remained unconverted.
In the final minutes of the first half Abbeyfeale got finally in reach of the Ballincollig try line. A miscommunication in the Ballincollig defense saw one of the Abbeyfeale player slipping through the defense and scoring under the posts, conversion kicked…Half-Time.
Abbeyfeale came back fighting in the second half, but it was the Ballincollig 1st XV who got the better of the opening minutes. A misjudged pass got lovely picked up by Podge Flynn, “dancing” around 3 defenders and racing over the try line, with Kevin Ryan kicking the conversion again.
Then the match turned and Abbeyfeale got the upper hand, keeping most of the possession. However, they were incapable to use their advantages out wide when they had Ballincollig outnumbered already. Ballincollig’s defense just worked superbly and all credit to each and every player constantly putting their bodies on the line and committing to every tackle that had to be made.
Denis Casey was superb in the line outs, stealing 2 of theirs, and a breaking run of some 50 metres before he got tackled and isolated.
Damian Attridge, Fergal Considine and Ian O’Malley (Capt.) were equally brilliant against a very strong front row of Abbeyfeale’s scrum.
And Paul Daly needs to be mentioned for the three times he launched a strong attack from short range against a heavy Abbeyfeale pack and determined defense.