•Few rugby games end scoreless, and when they do it suggests a dull and boring encounter. Yet the weekend’s u-20 league clash between Corinthians and Garryowen was far from sterile, and given the extreme weather conditions, the standard of play was remarkable.
Corinthians played into the elements, and yet dominated possession and territory for most of the half played. There were some outstanding performances, particularly in the pack, where the front five of Fiachra Tierney, Karl Egan, Mattie Flynn, and Eoin Costello where well led by captain James Robinson.
In difficult conditions they dominated a much bigger Garryowen pack, putting them on the hind foot in the scrums and disrupting their line outs. The back row of Johnny Kearney who covered a lot of ground, Shane Casey, who put in some serious hits, and Liam Carpenter, who made some good ground from the base of the scrum, also dictatede the pace in the first half. At scrumhalf Einda Fahy disrupted Garryowen consistently at the base of the scrum.
Despite this, Corinthians failed to capitalise with Dave Clarke narrowly missing two kicks at goal.
Unfortunately the second half did not deliver along expected lines with Garryowen coming out for the second half much more determined. Their back row of Darragh Kavanagh, Robert Meyer, and JP Cooney was impressive and dominated Corinthians at the breakdown.
Corinthians continued to win good possession, but were guilty of missing scoring chances from the placed ball, and with five minutes remaining they were denied a score.
Corinthians now play Young Munster in Limerick on Saturday.
Corinthians: L Keegan, A O'Connell, F Gormley, D Clarke, E Cooney, E Flynn, E Fahy, L Carpenter, J Kearney, S Casey, E Costello, M Flynn, J Robinson, K Egan, F Tierney. Subs: M Mc Grath, D Ott, D Higgins, P Walsh, Kevin Russell.
•Corinthian's u14’s travelled to Ballinasloe for their eagerly awaited first league encounter of the season, and came away with a comfortable 35 - 15 victory.
The Cloonacauneen outfit settled into the game quickly, and the first score of the game came from some good forward play after only five minutes when winger Darragh Moylan found Jamie Kelly who finished off for the first of six tries. Ruadhain O'Bearra added the extras and also the second try, set up by scrumhalf Kevin Finneran.
Ballinasloe did enjoy a purple patch, but were unable to break the Corinthian defence, thanks in particular to man of the match Chris Cahill. Instead ten minutes before the break Corinthians added a third from Darragh Moylan, while Ballinasloe responded for their first score, reducing the deficit to 5 - 17.
Once again Ballinasloe attacked the Corinthian line, but failed to make it count, and it was the visitors who, after some energy sapping defending, scored the fourth try when Marty Barrett crossed.
However within two minutes Ballinasloe punished the visitors with a try, and playing with renewed vigour, they did add to their tally. However Corinthians finished with a flourish, adding two well worked tries from winger Conor Casserley.
•Connacht results: Junior League Division 1A: OLBC 3 Westport 18; Corinthians 0 Monivea 13; Sligo 14 Corrib 0. Junior League Division 1B: UCG 34,Gort 0; Portumna 14 Dunmore 10;Junior League Division 2 North Section: Ballina 31 Corrib 7. Junior League Division 2 South Section: Corinthians 31 Loughrea 6; Monivea 12 West Offaly Lions 10.
•Connacht flanker Johnny O'Connor, has been named the Connacht Aer Arann Player of the Month for October. Aer Arann marketing manager Annette McGarry presented the 28-years-old with his award at the Sportsground recently, which consisted of two return flights to any of Aer Arann's destinations. O'Connor, who is now in his second stint with the province,played in all of Connacht's matches in October and is considered to be one of the province's most consistant performers. He played a key rol in Connacht's victories over both Leinster and Dax, and scored a try away to the French side in the European Challenge Cup.