Young Blacks teams show signs of progress

in Rugby

After deservedly clinching the Connacht Junior 1A title, Connemara were entered into this year’s All Ireland Interprovincial Junior round robin, the winner of which secures a place in a playoff with the second from bottom All Ireland 2C team.

With All Ireland League Senior status on the line, there was plenty to play for. 

Drawn against the Ulster, Munster and Leinster champions, Instonians, Clonmel and Dundalk, Connemara had an arduous task but approached each game with typical exuberance.

Unfortunately, The Blacks lost all three games – 40-0 to both Clonmel and Instonians, and 48-28 to eventual round robin champions, Dundalk.

Whilst the defeats were heavy in nature, this young Blacks side exhibited enough qualities – technical, physical and mental – to suggest that their Connacht League success this season won’t be a once off.

With many players in their early to mid-20s, this could be the start of another prolonged era of success.

Coach Walsh to leave club

After two seasons of success with Connemara RFC, head-coach and Westport native Eddie Walsh has left his post with the Monastery Field club.

Appointed in the aftermath of the club’s relegation from the All Ireland Senior League, Walsh has successfully moulded a young team into a winning, cohesive unit. He also brought the club three trophies along the way – the Cawley Cup, The Connacht J1A League and the Connacht Plate. 

To correct a slide and reverse a downward trajectory in sport is a difficult task, but Walsh, a former Westport Bulls player, stabilised the team in the league in his first season before winning this past campaign’s league title. He will leave with the respect and best wishes of the players, fans and all connected with Connemara RFC.

Connemara Seconds Get Another Chance At Connacht 2B Cup Final Glory: Despite a spirited effort on Connacht’s Sportsground home pitch, the Connemara Seconds will have to replay their Connacht Junior2B League final against Corinthians, after a late fightback from the Galway City club saw the game end 11-11 after extra time. 

An early Conor Nee try and two Mark Staunton penalties saw the Blacks lead handsomely, but after a spate of penalties, Corinthians gradually fought their way back into the game and a late try near the end of ordinary time saw the game levelled. 

Extra time couldn’t separate the sides and now the fixture will be arranged for a yet to be certified date.