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Tim Mulcahy’s writes on another exciting day for Newcastle West fans

By Tim Mulcahy
Bank of Ireland Munster Junior Cup:
Abbeyfeale 15, Newcastle West 22
THE short trip back the road was what suited Newcastle West supporters on a very cold Sunday. My car was fully booked for departure at 12 noon but with a terrible forecast, my crew was depleted to just two by the time we left. It was a day for the dedicated junior rugby supporter.
This was our third time playing our neighbours this year and with the previous results standing at one all, the bragging rights for the off season were also up for grabs.
The Munster Junior Cup has a proud history and both teams contested this game as if it was the final. The visitors won the toss and decided to play against the hill but with the wind. The game was dominated by Abbeyfeale for the opening twenty minutes and the men in black had to do a lot of defending. The first score was a penalty from Sean Herlihy after the visitors made a rare visit to the opposition half. This seemed to give NCW momentum and it was not long before Damian Kelly crossed in the corner after great work by Eddie and Tali in the centre. A superb conversion followed from Herlihy.
The game swung back in favour to the home side and the carried to the line scoring a converted try from sustained pressure in the scrum. The score was 5-10 at half time but the worrying factor was that NCW now had two players in the sinbin and would start the second half with thirteen men.
Steady heads were required and it is a huge credit to the lads that they managed to keep the score board operator rredundant for those vital ten minutes.
Tommy Kelleher mad a welcome return and was introduced with twenty five minutes gone in the second half. If you ever wanted a man to steady the ship and steer you home, there is no better man.
A move from a lineout saw the backs carry and supported by the forward the edged there way towards the line, a reverse pass by the captain Sean Herlihy put Gerald Griffin away and he had to stretch all six foot plus of his body to get over the line. The conversion was missed and the score now was 5-15.
Abbeyfeale brought the score to 8-15 with a penalty on 70 minutes.
Sean Murphy playing from full back put in a man of the match performance and crowned his day with a superbly taken try late in the second half. This was converted by Herlihy. The home side got a converted try in the last action of the game
Squad; Shane Magner, Caolan Moloney, Declan Moloney, Gerald Griffin, Dave Foley, Keelan Headd, James Kelly, Donal O’Sullivan, Sean Herlihy, Michael Bourke, Ed Powell, Sean Murphy, , Damián Kelly,  Taliolega Tuaaua, Brian O’Sullivan, Jason Woulfe, Sean Neville, Sean Corbet, Tommy Kelleher, James Walsh.
Scores for Newcastle West: Tries, Sean Murphy, Gerald Griffin, Damián Kelly; penalty, two conversions Sean Herlihy.
Newcastle West will play Cork Constitution in the quarter final in Cullinagh on Sunday, 24th March at 2pm.

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