Galwegians afforded unlikely shot at title

Galwegians took their twelfth victory of the season against Midleton, beating the Cork side 43-17. This keeps their slim chances of an AIL Division 2C title alive.

There was just one change to the team that defeated Clonmel, as Oisin McKey came in for Shane Mallon on the wing.

It was a lightning-fast start for the Blues as Rob Deacy scored one of the quickest tries in the AIL this season. Midleton were caught napping as Liam Angermann broke the line, and with both centres on each side, he passed it to Deacy who had a clear road ahead for the opening try. Tiarnan Neville’s conversion gave the visitors a seven-point lead.

Galwegians set the standard early on, and eight minutes in they scored their second of the afternoon. This time it was Ryan Smith after a trademark lineout maul: Smith’s seventh try of the season. A 14-point cushion emerged for Galwegians after Neville’s conversion.

Another lineout from close range gave Galwegians a chance to stretch their advantage. An opportunist offload from Cian Brady to Liam Angermann got them over the line. Angermann finished under the sticks to lead by 21 after Neville’s third conversion.

It was another sterling first-half performance from Galwegians who scored the crucial bonus point try with over half an hour played. It was once again the centres bringing the x-factor as Deacy got his second of the afternoon to make it 28-0. A Neville penalty before half-time made it 31-0, which gave them the best opportunity to take the fight to Clogher Valley.

Midleton got themselves on the board after the break as Johannes du Toit crossed for their first try of the afternoon. The Wegians’ defence gave out after a series of phases and du Toit got over. Conall Doyle converted the try to make it seven but the hosts had plenty of work to do.

Du Toit scored his second as Midleton began to finally settle into the game. Galwegians' lineout maul held them at the line, but du Toit once again found the gap to score his brace and close the gap. Doyle missed his second conversion to make it 31-12.

Galwegians were yet to score in the second half but Neville got them up and running with an extraordinary solo try for his first of the season. Chasing his own kick launched from his own half, he caught the ball and escaped the clutches of four Midleton players to break away towards the corner for one of the tries of the season.

Ten minutes from time, Oisin Halpin scored after another effective lineout maul. Stretched out on their line, Halpin found the gap in the Midleton defence and scored Galwegians’ sixth of the afternoon. Neville made 6/7 for the game with another conversion.

Midleton got the final score right at the end; Killian Lynch scoring the final try of the game. Du Toit once again made it happen for the hosts, playing it out to the left wing and finding Lynch. Lynch played the grubber kick and won the footrace against Sam Feely, touching down to make it 43-17.

Five points behind Clogher Valley with a -53 points difference, the Blues will have to pull off something miraculous against Tullamore this Saturday to win the title.

 

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