Seapoint 2011s exchange Passathon loot for tries galore against spirited Clondalkin and St Brigid’s teams
By Jaime McKeown
After a veritable who’s who of storms resulting in soggy-bottomed pitches and subsequent calendar havoc, Seapoint 2011s get the show firmly back on the road following squad reshuffle and weather kerfuffle
Sunday 06 March 2022 @ Fortress Kilbogget
February may be the shortest month but it certainly felt like the longest given the damaging impact of recent storms. But with daffodils beginning to outnumber Covid cases, a metaphorical winter gave way to a meteorological spring (and ensuing debates as to whether early March really can be called “spring” or not).
The Seapoint 2011s certainly had a spring in their step as they took to the hallowed turf of Kilbogget on a breezy but sunny Sunday morn to welcome the somewhat depleted squads of Clondalkin and St Brigid’s. But if the visitors lacked in numbers, they made up for it in spirit, and, with the willing (mostly!) support of some temporary loans from the recently reshuffled Seapoint squads, there were to be no walkovers.
Such eager students of the game, the Seapoint 2011s had been paying close attention to the highs and lows of the Six Nations, fine tuning their game plan and training ground moves.
And here’s how it played out (with apologies should any player have been overlooked in the ensuing madness!)…
Two wins from three, both of which where Seapoint came from behind, made for a fair return on an occasionally scrappy morning but one with some great rugby all the same.
Losing James K and Alessandro to the other squads before the first ball was kicked was an early setback for Team Blue, followed by quite a bit of squad juggling. Added to the fact this was the first time this particular squad had played together made it somewhat challenging to quickly establish a rhythm or pattern of play and allow the boys to settle into the games.
However, the players eventually found their stride, grinding out a win at the death in the first game and running away with the result in the second half of the second game to show what they had in the locker.
The first match ended with a last-minute try-winning team effort finished off beautifully by Amaury to crash over in the corner for the win. Luke D’Arcy and Luca continued their fine vein of form with mazy runs and solid tackles. James C moved the ball well from scrums and restarts and caught everyone off guard with a quick tap penalty in the second match (but thankfully not the all seeing eye(s) of Ref Gary to ensure the try stood!).
The two Oscars Bergin and Carron tackled manfully and Oscar Carron made a great turnover at the breakdown to relieve pressure against a big team of Clondalkin lads, punctuated with another fine display of alertness to pile on the pressure in defence, force the errors and capitalise on available ball to score a great opportunistic try as just reward.
The McLoughlin brothers played some of their best rugby so far and were involved with every play of the game as was Tom D who must have clocked the most meters run in support of any games he has played in – well done Tom.
Mohammed made another couple of his trademark herculean breaks with no less than four players hanging out of him before he was finally felled or just squeezed into touch. Lastly Sam Byrne continued his fine form in both defence and attack, always making the hard yards.
Great solidarity and spirit showed to support the other teams in their hour of need with the loaning out of our players (which possibly cost us the third game but hey-ho!).
A great performance all round. Some fine team work and handling skills displayed in all three matches and some standouts for the day included:
James Martin – had one of his best games on both defence and attack with some barnstorming runs when he got the ball in hand.
Oscar Urell – brilliant in attack and very vocal in getting the lads organised in their defensive line.
Malcolm Shannon – putting in some hard hits and driving the opposition back with his tackles.
Alfonso – showed plenty of gas down the wing, mirroring that of Simon Geoghan’s from years past.
Eoghan – made plenty of runs and some fine jackaling and counter-rucking to disrupt the opposition.
Tom Q – made some lovely runs, great tackles and nice switch moves with Dexter.
The standout performance for the Blacks went to Dexter with some fantastic runs and epic tackles, picking up the opposition players and driving them yards with his powerful hits.
Great performance all round by the boys, showed real strength and worked well as a team. Game 1 very strong, game 2 very hard fought, game 3 brilliant display of everything that they’ve been practicing over the past few months (despite the fatigue setting in).
A few stand-outs from the highlights reel as follows:
Alexander – great hands to take a wide pass in his own defensive zone, turned on Hulk Mode and ploughed through all incoming tackles and carried all the way into opposition defensive zone…. did the same again a couple of times…fantastic carry performance and he loved it.
Julian – multi-tasking excellence and popped up everywhere… line outs, rucks, looping passes, off-loads and Hulk Mode carries too, showing real skill with the ball in hand as well as raw strength.
Rory M – best rucking performance we’ve seen in a while – in the 2nd game he switched it up to 5th gear and must have cleaned out several rucks for perfectly timed turnovers in addition to his now well known bulldozer carries.
Paddy – continuous work rate all around the pitch with ferocious tackles and some sensational off-loads with one set of 4 phases with himself and Rory off-loading in 1-2 style to each other to create a try for a supporting team mate (rumours of a video abound so if you have it, come forward and share the YouTube royalties!).
Dylan O – great to see him back on the pitch and causing concerns for Van der Flier… tackles, carries and tries galore.
Harry – showed beautiful catch/pass skills every time he got on the ball, setting up at least two tries for his team mates.
Sean – showed his trade mark speed in attack but also in a fantastic defensive performance – chasing down every line break for some great try saving tackles.
Given the extreme effort and a few injuries pre- and post-match, it was decided to pass on the passathon this time as the lads had already several kilometres clocked after the three games. But goodie bags and sausages helped get the recovery process underway so congrats to all fundraisers and especially the helpers/volunteers/coerced parents to make it a success overall!
Training Wednesday and Sunday and please keep an eye on the WhatsApp feed and website for upcoming fixture details.
And finally, as they’re getting older and (we trust!) wiser, we encourage the boys to take more personal responsibility for their gear – gumshields, water bottles, bags, tying own laces, removing watches/FitBits before training etc. – but if you can please ensure their full name is written clearly on each item where possible that will help identify it if accidentally left behind or mixed-up – an indelible marker is statistically cheaper to buy than a new training top…
Well done all once again!