It’s been a while since the last U20’s Touchline Report and so to bring all up to date it can be initially reported that the squad continues to make positive advancements in the JP3 League.
We have to go back to Sunday 8th December, where at home, Coolmine 20’s played close league rivals UCD. The game was barely 1 minute old before the 20’s lost a very key player to a Red Card. Fortunately for the player and squad this was overturned by the Leinster Branch. However, the 20’s had to play the rest of the game with 14 players making it a very tight and competitive game but with the contentment of coming out on top with a close victory of 13 to 8.
This game was followed up by a fixture against Nass, also close league rivals and proved their worth in a tough encounter. Coolmine got the breaks and pulled away winners by 36 to 17.
The next fixture was away to a big and strong Malahide team and in windy conditions both sides struggled with continuity. Malahide made the best of their forwards with strong carries held the lead at half time. Coolmine responded early in the second half picked up two try’s but Malahide remained in battle with try’s of their own. Only in the latter stages did the 20’s create breathing space. Both sides could not really be happy with the quality of their play even with a final score of Malahide 35 to Coolmine 53.
Last weekend the U20’s went down to Ashbourne where again both sides had to play in atrocious conditions of wind and rain. Coolmine played against the wind in the first half and this required a lot of carries to make the ‘hard yards’. Ashbourne also with a big and strong side responded with their own driving. It took a massive defensive effort from the 20’s to keep them out in the first half. However, following some good 20’s driving into the opposition half an opportunity arose and a break appeared
with Coolmine getting on the board with a try. The windy conditions made any conversion attempt virtually impossible. The score remained the same up to half time. On resumption of the second half Ashbourne came out blazing with the 20’s having to defend their line doggedly over a ten minute period. With the use of the wind the 20’s eventually relieved some of the pressure and through a break got the second try … this one was actually converted. Ashbourne came again but the 20’s defence held firm.
Coolmine forwards through a combination of scrums, lineouts and drives we able to secure two further tries and close out the game with a win of 22 - 0. On the final whistle everyone player, frozen, just ran for the showers! The brave spectators only had the luxury of their cars.
Today (23rd Feb)12 Noon, the 20’s host Seapoint in a fixture that the opposition have been long seeking to play. It is expected to be a real cracker but hopefully the 20’s can get a positive result. The JP3 League is getting to close to completion and with DLSP leading at the top of the league all Coolmine can do is to keep working hard in training and in the games.
This U20’s squad is a really a fine group of lads and while enjoying themselves have played some really good rugby and developed a strong bond. Even though its early the squad would really like you to come along and offer your support and also for the enjoyment at their fixtures!