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Newbridge RFC vs Mullingar RFC – MATCH REPORT:
This was a great game of rugby with great pressure moments from both sides. Mullingar, the unbeaten League leaders came out on top in the end, but Newbridge gave everything in a fantastic effort. Mullingar won scoring 3 tries with 2 converted and a penalty to Newbridge’s converted try and 3 penalties.
Prior to kick off a minute’s silence was held for the passing of Pat Dowling one of the great Newbridge supporters.
The forward exchanges were tough as the game swung from end to end. Newbridge scrum half Mark Delaney effort saw him driven into touch over the corner flag in the 7th minute at the Mullingar end. In the 10th minute Mullingar outhalf kicked them in front with a penalty from in front of the posts. Kevin Commane came on at scrumhalf for the injured Delaney in the 14th minute and played well throughout the match. The game swung from end to end of the pitch until the 36th minute when Mullingar scored a try off a very controversial decision by the referee. The Mullingar back was holding the ball on the ground with a Newbridge player standing over him when the referee awarded a penalty for Mullingar from which they scored a converted try in the 36th minute. A minute later Newbridge outhalf Ronan Skehan got on the scoring mark as he kicked a 40-metre penalty to leave it at 3 points to 10 at the break.
Newbridge started the second half with renewed vigour and following a lot of pressure their second row Pierce Dargan got over for a try which Skehan converted. Mark Doyle at wing forward was replaced by Scott Mc Mullan. The game continued at a great pace until Mullingar got over for a try in the 57th minute. After a late tackle on him Skehan kicked a penalty in the 61st minute. Now at 13 points to 15 it was all to play for. Centre Denis Clarke was replaced by Neil Hogan. In the closing stages Mullingar scored another converted try in the 76th minute. Never to give up Newbridge stormed back and in the 80th minute Skehan kicked another penalty to get the bonus point.
Best for Newbridge we were Graham Burns in the centre with his driving runs and the solid handling of Ronan Skehan at outhalf. In The forwards Ronan Mangan at No.8 brought drive and determination and Brendan Commane at prop put in a huge effort.
Referee: Karl McIntyre (Balbriggan)
Newbridge: Nicholas Harrington, Will Jennings, Brendan Commane, Pierce Dargan, Keith Moran, Mark Doyle, Jeff Dreaper (Capt), Ronan Mangan, Mark Delaney, Ronan Skehan, Stephen Cooke, Denis Clarke, Graham Burns, Billy Delaney, Donal Cashman. Subs: Cameron English, Ian O’Rahelly, Scott McMullan, Neil Hogan, Kevin Commane.
Newbridge are away to North Kildare in the Maws, Kilcock on Sunday 24th November at 2.30pm.