The Munster Schools Senior Rugby Cup Final was played in very testing conditions in Thomond Park on St Patrick’s Day. The game started with early PBC pressure and the tackling from Glenstal was ferocious. Jack O Mahony threatened PBC with good running lines and Mark Fleming made some great carries. PBC scored a penalty after 14 mins but Ben Healy levelled proceedings with an excellent penalty kick. PBC then scored a well worked try on 19 minutes and continued to dominate territory and possession. Glenstal were unlucky to lose possession in a number of line outs. Luke Fitzgerald made some great carries and Jamie Mawhinney made a ferocious tackle which represented an excellent defence from Glenstal. Tim Molony made an excellent catch on the right win which nearly bore fruit. At half time the score was 8-3 to PBC.
The support from Glenstal was massive,
aided by a great turnout of Old Boys continued to roar their team on throughout the match. PBC missed a penalty 12 mins into the second half but they continued to dominate territory and possession spending a lot of time in Glenstal’s half. Glenstal continued to tackle bravely and Ben Healy made some excellent kicks to relieve the pressure. Andrew Hogan, Declan Floyd, Henry Downing and Mark Walsh all came on to play their part. Conor Booth made an excellent line break late in the half but it was snuffed out by PBC. They then scored a late penalty to make the final score 11-3.
In the end PBC were deserving winners but Glenstal really made them work for it. Glenstal showed that they are comfortable at this level and the future is bright with many of the squad eligible to play next year.
As Fr William Fennelly said at the post match function this Glenstal team has brought so much joy to the wider Glenstal community and they should be very proud of their efforts. The loss is no consolation to the players but they will learn from it and become better players and men as a result. It was fantastic the number of Glenstal supporters who made the effort to be at the match and the squad appreciated it. A huge debt of gratitude is owed to the Glenstal Head Coach Sean Skehan and his coaching staff namely Tom Hayes, Nick Miller, and Lee Nicholas for their excellent work with the squad. A special word of thanks to the Team Captain Rory Clarke who led his players so valiantly and served as an excellent example to all the school. Bring on the 2017/8 season!!