Tullamore 1st XV v Bruff match report

   18 Feb 2017

Tullamore RFC rue another defeat

On Saturday 18th of February Tullamore welcomed Bruff RFC to Spollanstown. Tullamore were undoubtedly favourites going in to this game but as we have witnessed thus far in this league, a win is not guaranteed until the final whistle. Last week Tullamore lost at the death away to Rainey Old Boys RFC and unfortunately Saturday's runout ended in a similar fashion. Tullamore started the game with a strong squad. However it was clear from the outset that Bruff were going to be no pushovers. Bruff's defence gave Tullamore no space and the opening half was a game of scrums between the two 22's. Some clever play by full back Karl Dunne gave Tullamore a penalty and their first opportunity to break the deadlock at 0-0. Karl stood up and slotted it over to give Tullamore the lead with 35 minutes played. Straight away Bruff returned to the Tullamore 22 where they managed to get a penalty of their own. Tullamore will look back on this one in dismay when the game is reviewed next week. With the penalty conceded in front of the posts, the Bruff kicker had little to do to leave the score 3-3 at half time. The second half started with great intensity from Tullamore lead by the very impressive Ger Molloy. Ger has been a key figure for Tullamore this season, making line breaks and spurring on his team with huge carries. Unfortunately on this occasion the ball was knocked on in contact and Bruff regained possession. Bruff showed no fear and ran at Tullamore spreading the ball at speed across the pitch to score their first try. The try was touched down in the corner resulting in a very difficult conversion kick that came up short. The score stood at 3-8 with 30 minutes to play. Tullamore responded quickly with a try of their own. The back line combining effortlessly for the first time to allow Connor Dunne to stride through under the posts. When given space and opportunity this back line are menacing and the speed at which the ball went through the hands for this try is evidence of this. Karl Dunne converted to put the score at 10-8 with 25 minutes to play. The next twenty minutes were played out in the middle of the pitch. A very physical and close encounter, the latter stages of the second half was filled with scrum after scrum. It was off a scrum Bruff found a gap, again sending the ball from right to left before again crashing over the Tullamore try line to lead the game 13-10 with only five minutes to go. Tullamore tried to rally again lead by captain Tom Gilligan and Colm Heffernan. Tullamore won a scrum in the Bruff 22 and the packed stand held their collective breath in the hopes that for once Tullamore could steal it at the death. It wasn't to be. Bruff pilled on the pressure at the ruck affording Tullamore no space to make any further progress toward the try line. Tullamore were penalised for not releasing and with the resulting penalty Bruff kicked the ball out to secure the win. This one will really hurt Tullamore. On a day when results elsewhere went in our favour, we couldn't get the job the done. It wasn't for lack of commitment and determination. Every player gave their best but unfortunately on the day it wasn't good enough. The lads will need to regroup now and learn from two difficult losses, both due to last gasp tries. The next outing will be away to Kanturk RFC on Saturday 4th of March. For updates follow us on Twitter @TullamoreRFC. The squad was as follows:

Karl Dunne

Connor Dunne

Tom Gilligan(cpt)

Dylan Kelso

Robert Tormey

Aidan Wynne

Aaron Deverell

Kevin Browne

Colm Heffernan

Leon Martin

Ivor Deverell

S Rigney

Ger Molloy

Cathal Feighery (V.C)

Darragh Lowry


Daniel Cronin

Matthew Murphy

Ciaran Ennis

Mike Tormey

Brian Gilligan

Mark Kennedy (cover)

Sean McCabe (cover)