Rugby with Michael Silke
BUCCANEERS host the Connacht Senior Cup final for the first time at Dubarry Park this Saturday, January 5. Galway Corinthians will be opponents for this early new year showdown which kicks off at 2pm.
Buccs last won the cup two seasons ago when they overcame Corinthians on a foggy night at Corinthian Park. Hence the midlanders have home advantage for a repeat of that decider, which was a tight enough encounter with the Pirates prevailing 17-10. It was even closer when the clubs met in this season’s Connacht Senior League at the same venue where Buccs edged the decision 28-25. With silverware on offer, the exchanges are likely to be contested with fervour and vigour in this first game of the new year.
BUCCANEERS PRESIDENT’S XV 53 EXILES SELECTION 10
The Buccaneers President’s XV retained the James Moran Exiles Perpetual Cup with consummate ease when they overwhelmed the Exiles Selection 53-10 at Dubarry Park on St. Stephen’s Day. Backboned by a quintet of Byrnes, the holders were on top from start to finish in this traditional festive fixture which was played in unseasonably benign weather.
The President’s men, with a numerical advantage, displayed little seasonal goodwill when scoring opportunities presented themselves as they raced into an early 19-0 lead with a brace of Ross Enraght-Moony tries sending them on their way. Man of the match Robert Reid notched the third try before Glen Costello opened the Exiles account. But Roan Wheatley-Byrne’s try gave the victors a healthy 24-5 halftime lead.
Gerard Fallon stretched the advantage with an early second half touchdown before Ross Enraght-Moony completed his hat-trick. Exiles captain Glen Costello grabbed his second try for the Exiles to leave his side trailing 34-10 with Fallon responded similarly for the winners. Darren Costello then scored the try of the match with Ruairi Byrne getting the final touchdown following an explosive burst by Sean Flynn.
Despite the one-sided nature of the scoreline, it was nevertheless an entertaining affair well officiated by referee Richie English. History was made in the game when five members of the Byrne clan played on the President’s team. Making his final on-field outing, evergreen Paul Byrne played alongside his sons Kalem and Roan and brothers Sean and Ruairi. After the match, the James Moran Exiles Perpetual Cup was presented to victorious young captain Kalem Wheatley-Byrne by Kayla Moran, granddaughter of the late James Moran whose memory the coveted trophy commemorates.
BUCCANEERS PRESIDENT’S XV:- K.Wheatley-Byrne (captain ), R.Wheatley-Byrne, P.Byrne, R.Byrne, S.Byrne, Ross Enraght-Moony, Robert Enraght-Moony, D.Costello, G.Fallon, S.Flynn, R.Reid and V.Kabongo.
EXILES SELECTION:- G.Costello (captain ), A.Hayman, K.Kiripati, K.Kiripati junior, B.Pears, E.Brady, D.Hickey, J.Murtagh, J.Naughton and I.Tuiauga.
Referee:- Richard English.
Buccaneers Girls, Youths and Minis teams have produced a 2019 calendar which can be purchased from underage coaches/managers or at The Bounty. Cost is only €10 per calendar.