Munster Junior League Division 1 V Bandon 29th Sept 2019   02/10/2019

Munster Junior League Division 1

Clonakilty 21 – Bandon 17

Clonakilty’s first XV roared back into the J1 league last Sunday with a fantastic win over old rivals Bandon.

After the rain of Saturday, the skies cleared to create near perfect conditions for Sunday’s encounter. The game kicked off with Clonakilty going straight for attack imposing pressure on the Bandon line out forcing the turn over and getting the ball  into the Bandon 22’ within the first 10 minutes. Clonakilty worked hard and pushed on and nearly in for a try but played smart when they were awarded a penalty they took it to the post to get their first 3 points on the board from the boot of Mark Purcell. The Clon men continued their dominance for the next 10 mins as they worked their way back into a scoring position. Then from some fantastic passing through the line Graham Murray passed out to Peter Shallow who bound over the line for Clonakilty’s first try. The conversion followed from Purcell putting Clonakilty 10 points ahead. Bandon worked well to make up for their errors and created problems for the Clonakilty defence with some fantastic runs into space. Clon defence held out as long as they could but eventually Bandon ran under the posts for their 1st score of the day and with the conversion reduced the deficit to 10-7. The battle continued with great play from both sides neither giving an inch. Bandon were unlucky to miss a penalty kick to draw the game but Clon made sure that they kept pushing on before the break. Soon after Clonakilty were rewarded a second penalty which Purcell slot over with ease. Just before the half time whistle, Bandon launched a huge assault on the Clonakilty line which put our defences to the test. Clonakilty persevered and kept Bandon out of the danger zone but gave away a penalty giving Bandon the opportunity to bring it within 3 and were successful this time. A high intensity first half that left it all very close at the break.

Half-time Score – Clonakilty 13: Bandon 10

Clonakilty started the first half well setting the game up to try and build from their good start. But when Bandon intercepted a pass and took off catching Clonakilty defences off guard leading to their 2nd try and conversion stealing the lead 13-17. But the Clon men showed true strength and character and made up for their error with a massive performance for the rest of the half. The team held strong in defence, taking their opportunities when they came with some fantastic play from captain Donal McSweeney, Graham Murray and Aaron Hayes to name but a few. Clon pushed Bandon defences to the max and when Victor Lovell took the ball and went on run  for the Bandon line there was no stopping him swooping over and in for a try. The game continued on for another nail-biting 15 mins with the crowd on edge with every tackle and pass. The Clon men were heroic in defence with Mike O’Hea completing immense work at the breakdown. With a mere 5 minutes to go Clonakilty were awarded another penalty which Purcell safely slotted between the posts extending Clonakilty’s lead to 4 points. Both sides never gave up till the bitter end and to Bandon’s credit they worked hard in attack to try and break through the strong wall of defence the Clon men built up. As Bandon knocked the ball on within inches of the Clonakilty line the crowd erupted as Clon sent the ball out to finish the game 21-17.

It was a fantastic performance from Clonakilty who showed passion and determination throughout from each and every player. They sent a message of intent that they were back in the Junior 1 league and were here to stay!

Next week the team are off to Tipperary where they take on Clanwilliam with kick off at 2.30pm.

All Photos Courtesy of Dave Sheehan at

1 Shane Magner, 2 Hugh O’neill, 3 Ruslan Dorogan, 4 Donal McSweeney, 5 Michael O’Hea, 6 Courtney Canning , 7 Colin Deane, 8 Olan Deane, 9 Alex O’Mahony, 10 Graham Murray, 11 Victor Lovell, 12 Mark Purcell, 13 Shane Scannell, 14 Peter Shallow, 15 Aaron Hayes, 16 Cathal O’Regan, 17 Jack Ryan, 18 Dorin Botan, 19 Shane Deasy, 20 Robert Howick, 21 Jacob Lehane


Donal Mac Sweeney Club Captain 2018/19

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