Madden Cup final preview

Tallaght Rugby club are in the final of the Madden Cup for the second time in three seasons.

They head to Malahide RFC for the final which is always hosted there after it was named for the late long-time club member John Madden. When Tallaght made the final two years ago, they lost by just two points to Coolmine in what was a cracking game. This time they will hope to get over the line and they take on a DLSP side who they’ve had plenty of battles with over the years. Tallaght have made the final with two hard fought wins over Guinness and Railway Union while DLSP have beaten AIB and Coolmine.

Tallaght coach Tom Leigh is looking forward to the final. “We have had another very positive start to the season and are top of our league having not hit top form this season as yet. The training been very positive with good numbers and we’ve benefitted from the introduction of our new backs coach Gary Brennan. His enthusiasm and knowledge is challenging the backs to improve their game and it is only a matter of time before it clicks.

“The big challenge this week is to produce a performance and play to our potential. If this happens we have a very good chance to upset the odds. The leadership within the team this year has been excellent and that is bringing their skills levels to a place they haven’t reached before. Again the support on the sideline has been incredible this year with all the club behind us and here’s hoping as always the wider community will support Tallaght RFC this weekend in Malahide.”

Madden Cup Final
Saturday 15th December 2018
Malahide RFC
Kick-off 1.00PM

Aaron Shanahan

Tallaght 17 Athy 12

Martina Fitzpatrick

Tallaght R.F.C. 17

Tries: Martina Fitzpatrick, Ellen Crotty, Roisin Doyle
Con: Aisling Pyke

Athy R.F.C. 12

Women’s League Division 4
Pitch 100, Firhouse

Tallaght took on sixth place Athy in Division 4 of the Women’s league looking for their second win of the season. They started well with a great move by the forwards that ended with Martina Fitzpatrick going over from close range. Aisling Pyke made the conversion and Tallaght led 7-0. But shortly after the kick off Athy broke through and scored a try but missed the conversion to leave the score at 7-5.

Then after some great teamwork between the forwards and backs centre Ellen Crotty broke through and made a great run from 35 yards out to score a excellent try to make it 12-5 to Tallaght. Within 10 mins Athy broke through again and this time they converted the try to make it 12 points each at halftime. Tallaght started the second half as they started the first and after some great pressure, Rosin Doyle broke through the Athy defence to score a great try to make it 17-12.

Athy tried to come back but due to the fantastic defence by Tallaght, Athy found it hard to make any ground. Tackle after tackle went in and Athy kept coming but Tallaght kept sending them back and the game finished 17-12 to the home team.

Tackle coach Adam Nolan was delighted with his team’s performance. “The pack led from the front with strong carries and big up defence. There was some big tackles by Megan Fogarty and Rosin Doyle and Ellen Crotty made several cover tackles to save our bacon. There was plenty of strong carries from the pack and also strong runs from Eileen Shanahan and Megan. I have to give a big mention to Martina Fitzpatrick who really set the tone early with some great carries and line breaks and an excellent try followed by a big effort at the rucks with a few turnovers. There was also a few typical bone-crunching tackles from Aisling Pyke and Vicky Cobbe also got through a lot of work. Overall I’m just delighted for the whole squad. We’ve had a few tough results but everyone worked hard to contribute towards the win and it’s great to go into the Christmas break on the back of a positive result.”

Woman of the match: Martina Fitzpatrick


15. Megan Fogarty
14. Angelika Gertz
13. Ellen Crotty
12. Eileen Shanahan
11. Therese Prendiville
10. Aisling Pyke
9. Shauna Power

1. Seana Greenhalgh
2. Karen Corrigan
3. Ciara Corcoran
4. Vicky Cobbe
5. Martina Fitzpatrick (Captain)
6. Roisin Doyle

16. Lisa Kennedy
17. Melissa Luttrell

Report: Mark Luttrell
Photo: Anne Kavanagh

Weekend fixtures 8th/9th December

Daryl Keogh

It’s not too far from Christmas but Tallaght RFC are still busy.

With Friday’s scheduled match for the men’s first team cancelled due to Navan withdrawing from the Metro Division, the focus is on Tallasalle’s game away to Swords in Division 11 on Saturday. With leaders Clontarf not playing, a win for Tallasalle will put them top of the table for the Christmas break and kick-off is 2PM at the ALSAA Sports Complex.

On Sunday the women’s team also have their final league game before the Christmas break. They are at home to Athy and kick-off on Pitch 100 in Firhouse is 1AM.

In the youths there is training for Bisto’s ladies Friday at 6.30 at St Marys. On Sunday the Under 11’s are away to Terenure meeting at 9.15am. There is training for the other Mini’s at Firhouse Community College at 10am and the older youths from 10.30AM.

Please make your best effort to get out and support all our teams.

Megan Fogarty

Tallaght 1st 8 Bective Rangers 3

Tony McManus

Tallaght 1sts 8

Try: Andrew Rudd
Con: Adam Nolan

Bective Rangers 3

Metro League Division 7
Tymon Park

Tallaght took on Bective in Division 7 of the Metro League in their final league game before the Christmas break. They took the lead after two minutes when skipper Adam Nolan scored a penalty kick. Tallaght were increasingly on the wrong side of an erratic refereeing display however and conceded a lot of penalties. After missing with their first shot on goal, Bective tied things up with a successful penalty kick.

Tallaght looked to have scored the first try of the match when Aaron Shanahan collected a kick from Dave Clarke and ran in near the posts but he was ruled to have knocked the ball on when touching down. Shortly afterwards Tallaght won the ball back and scrum-half Andy Rudd spotted a gap and showed good strength to get over for a try to make it 8-3. Though there was fifty minutes left to play at that stage that was the last act of scoring in a dire, error-ridden game.

The wet, greasy conditions and the strange refereeing combined for a frustrating spectacle where both teams huffed and puffed before the inevitable knock on came. In terms of positives Tallaght’s defensive lineout was very good with Daniel Pomares and Colin Morrison causing havoc on the Bective throw. Their defence was also decent but to have any chance in the Madden Cup final in two weeks time, Tallaght will need to rediscover their attacking threat out wide.  Worrying their ability to score points out wide has mostly deserted them this season and their average points scored per game has plummeted when compared to last year.

Tallaght coach Tom Leigh was just happy to get the win in the difficult conditions. “It was a wet day which made handling very difficult. But we got the win which puts us back on top of the table. We know we need to work on a lot of things to be in good shape for the Madden Cup final in a fortnight. In terms of individuals Gav McKeon stepped up to start at late notice and had a strong match in the centre. Daniel Pomares and Colin Morrison both went well in the lineout but my man of of match was Tony McManus who moved from prop to play hooker for the first time in a few years because of injuries to Ken McGovern and Sean Hanlon. His throwing in was near perfect and he also put in a great shift around the park and was unlucky not to score a try in the corner when the ref ruled he was held up.”

Man of the match: Tony McManus

Tallaght RFC

15. Daryl Keogh
14. Aaron Shanahan
13. Gavin McKeon
12. Padhraig Jones
11. Karl Segrave
10. David Clarke
9. Andrew Rudd

1. Alan Sower
2. Tony McManus
3. Andy Caswell
4. Mark Keogh
5. Colin Morrison
6. Daniel Pomares
7. Jack Russell
8. Adam Nolan (Captain)

Substitute Positions

16. Simon Gaskell
17. Sean Judd
18. Kevin Quinn
19. Ciaran Keane
20. Simon Collie

Report: Jim O’Connor
Photos: Anne Kavanagh

Weekend fixtures 1st/2nd December

It’s another busy weekend of action for Tallaght RFC.

On Saturday the Tallaght men’s first team are at home to Bective in the Metro League Division 7. Tallaght are looking to bounce back from their first defeat of the season and kick-off is 2PM in Tymon Park.

On Sunday the women’s team travel to Portlaoise in Division 4 of the women’s league. Kick-off is at 1PM in Togher.

In the youths there is training for Bisto’s ladies Friday at 6.30PM at St Marys. On Sunday the under 8’s are away to Westmanstowm for a blitz, meeting in Westmanstown at 9.15am. There is training for the other Mini’s and Under 11’s at Firhouse Community College at 10am and the older youths from 10.30AM.

Please make your best effort to get out and support all our teams.

Clontarf 5 Tallaght/DLSP 0

Clontarf 5

Tallaght/DLSP 0

Metro League Division 11

The Tallaght/DLSP combined team also known as “Tallasalle” played Clontarf in first versus second battle in Division 11 of the Metro League. A scrappy first half finished scoreless but Tallasalle defended well under pressure. 

In the second half Tallasalle found themselves under constant pressure and eventually Clontarf scored the only try of the match for a 5-0 win. 

Longford 26 Tallaght 0

Roisin Doyle

Longford R.F.C. 26

Tallaght R.F.C. 0

Women’s League Division 4
Terenure Road North

Tallaght’s women’s team took on Longford in Division 4 of the women’s league. Longford scored two tries in each half and converted three of them for a 26-0 win.

Coach Adam Nolan was disappointed for his team. “At moments we played some good rugby but overall we just couldn’t put enough phases together to really be a threat. But we did get some new players some gametime which is a positive.”

Woman of the match: Roisin Doyle


15. Megan Fogarty
14. Shauna Power
13. Ellen Crotty
12. Aisling Pyke
11. Gemma Segrave
10. Cíara McLoughlin (Captain)
9. Eileen Shanahan

1. Lorraine McManus
2. Lisa Kennedy
3. Karen Corrigan
4. Seana Greenhalgh
5. Lisa Connors
6. Vicky Cobbe
7. Martina Fitzpatrick
8. Roisin Doyle


16. Lisa O’Connell
17. Ciara Corcoran
18. Therese Prendeville

Report: Jim O’Connor
Photos: Anne Kavanagh

AIB 22 Tallaght 1st 21

Padhraig Jones shows off his war wounds

AIB 22

Tallaght 1sts 21

Try: Adam Nolan 2, Karl Segrave
Con: Rob Hudson, Shane Guerrine 2

Metro League Division 7
DCU Sports Campus

Tallaght took on AIB in Division 7 of the Metro League looking to maintain their place at the top of the table. After a delay of kick-off for twenty five minutes because the referee couldn’t find the ground, Tallaght played into the wind in the first half. The Tallaght pack was dominant but they couldn’t turn it into points as two kicks at goal drifted wide into the breeze. Tallaght were carrying powerfully through Ken McGovern, Jack Russell and Alan Moore but they suffered a blow when they lost their prop Andy Grace early to a back injury.

AIB had little enough ball but when they did they showed how dangerous they could be with both their centres showing good footwork and footballing skills. Against the run of play the AIB openside flanker showed a serious turn of pace as he broke through some weak tackles and sped away for a fine try which was converted for a 7-0 lead. Tallaght fought back and the forwards were producing good ball in great field positions but some poor decisions and handling from the backs let AIB off the hook. Finally just before half-time skipper Adam Nolan took command and scored a try from a tap penalty and Rob Hudson converted to make it 7 points all at half-time.

Tallaght started the second half strongly and looked to have scored an excellent try after David Clarke put Hudson away and he beat his man to score in the corner. Incredibly the referee, who had been well behind the play, decided the Tallaght fullback had been in touch even though Hudson was at least a yard clear of the sideline. AIB couldn’t believe their luck and from the lineout they cleared the ball and the returning kick back from Tallaght went straight into the hands of their openside flanker and once again he showed his speed to scorch away for his second try of the match. AIB converted to make it 14-7 and so it was a fourteen point turnaround on the back of a truly terrible call from the referee.

Things got worse for Tallaght as they lost Padhraig Jones for fifteen minutes to a bad head cut and he was soon joined on the sideline by Alan Moore who hurt his calf and Rob Hudson who broke a finger. AIB took advantage with a superb team try featuring several offloads to take a 19-7 lead. With AIB now playing the fast-paced game that suited their strengths Tallaght looked to be in trouble but their defence, led by David Clarke and the relentless Mark Keogh held them out. Then skipper Adam Nolan took the game to AIB again running a smart, direct line and then exchanging passes with Tony McManus before scoring a fine try in the corner.

Out-half Shane Guerrine, who was making his Tallaght debut, stepped up to take over kicking duties from the injured Hudson and he nailed a beauty of a touchline conversion to make it 19-14. AIB won a penalty from the restart though and converted it to take a eight point lead into the last ten minutes of the game. But Tallaght kept coming and replacement winger Karl “Moonbeam” Segrave scored a fine try in the corner and once again Guerrine scored an excellent conversion to make it a one point game at 22-21. Tallaght had three minutes left to find a winning score but they ill-advisedly tried to run the ball out of their own twenty two instead of kicking for territory and they turned the ball over and conceded a couple of penalties. In the end AIB were happy just to kick the ball out to seal the win.

Tallaght coach Tom Leigh was disappointed with the result but proud of his team’s commitment. “They’re a good team and the league looks to be a very tight race between us, them and Clontarf. Clonarf beat AIB, we beat Clontarf and now they’ve beaten us so we can see how competitive it’s going to be. But when we went 19-5 down, they looked full of running and it could have turned into a bad beating. But led by our excellent captain Adam Nolan we got it back to within a point at the end. This earned us a losing bonus point that keeps us ahead of AIB and level with Clontarf on points at the top of the table.”

“We came back at them despite losing important players like Andy Grace, Rob Hudson and Alan Moore to injury. Padhraig Jones got a bad cut but got patched up and went back out there and Ken McGovern and Mark Keogh picked up knocks during the game but played through the pain so I’ve got to pay tribute to the team’s character.”

“We got on the wrong side of a few refereeing calls but if we’re honest, we played well in certain areas but still aren’t performing as well as we can, especially in attack. We need to work harder on getting good ball to our explosive runners out wide. We know we’re capable of doing that as we’ve done it before, so we just need to work harder in training to get our skills back to that level. We’ve two league games against Bective and Navan and then a cup final against DLSP before the Christmas break. If we win all three games, we are going to be in great shape for the second half of the season.”

Man of the match: Adam Nolan

Tallaght RFC

15. Rob Hudson
14. Aaron Shanahan
13. David Clarke
12. Padhraig Jones
11. Ciaran Keane
10. Shane Guerrine
9. Andrew Rudd

1. Tony McManus
2. Ken McGovern
3. Andrew Grace
4. Mark Keogh
5. Alan Moore
6. Jack Russell
7. Alan Sower
8. Adam Nolan (Captain)

Substitute Positions

16. Andy Caswell
17. Karl Segrave
18. Daryl Keogh
19. Kevin Quinn
20. Simon Collie

Report: Jim O’Connor
Photos: Jim O’Connor

Weekend fixtures 24th-25th November

Ken McGovern

All of Tallaght’s teams are back in action this weekend.

It’s first versus second as the Tallaght/DLSP combined team ‘Tallasalle’ are away to Clontarf in Castle Avenue in the Metro League Division 11. Please note the early kick-off time of 1PM.

Later that afternoon, the Tallaght men’s first team are at away to AIB in the Metro League Division 7. Tallaght are hoping to maintain their place at the top of the table but AIB are in third place with four wins from five and will be tough opponents. Kick-off is at the slightly earlier than normal time of 2PM in the DCU Sports Campus.

For anyone planning to travel over for the game the DCU Sports Campus is situated outside the DCU University grounds and is different from the DCU Sports Complex. So use ‘DCU Sports Campus’ on your navigation devices to avoid a lot of heartache and when you arrive at the venue the rugby pitches are down the very far end of the grounds.

On Sunday the women’s team travel to Longford in Division 4 of the women’s league. Tallaght will be looking to do the double after beating Longford earlier in the season and kick-off is at 12.45 in CPL Park.

In the youths there is training for Bisto’s ladies Fridat at 6.30 at St Marys. This training is for all girls 12+ and is open to all new players. Contact Audrey 085 7349255 for more info.

Training for Mini’s and Under 11’s at Firhouse Community College 10am. Under 9’s travel to Greystones for 9am. KO 9.30 for Blitz. Older Youths travel to Coolmine RFC for 12.45 – kick off 1.45

Please make your best effort to get out and support all our teams.

Audrey Fulham – Becoming a Referee

Audrey Fulham took up rugby for the first time just under three years ago. While she enjoyed playing and still trains and plays occasionally for the Tallaght women’s team, this season she has focused on refereeing. We asked Audrey to explain how she got into refereeing and how she’s enjoying it so far.

“I’m not sure what exactly prompted me to take an interest in refereeing but I watch an awful lot of rugby and especially Super Rugby in the summer. I think it was both Tallaght coaches Tom Leigh and Mark Keogh who mentioned refereeing to me so I did the all female referee workshop in January 2018 and enjoyed that. I didn’t start reffing until the tag season began and I enjoyed that a whole lot.”

“I quickly realised I had a good aptitude for it and I was put up to do the Lansdowne tag cup final. I was invited to ref at the all Ireland tag and I reffed the War Child final and the Friday night annual Blitz final. Then I began refereeing 15 a side rugby and I’m enjoying it even more. I started off reffing boys underage matches at schools and clubs and a few women’s Division 3 games. Last Sunday was my trial match which was a boys under-18s match and my assessor was very pleased with my reffing and has put me forward to join the ARLB! I’m absolutely loving it and definitely want to progress further up the divisions and I know from last Sunday what I need to work on to do that!”

While everyone at Tallaght rugby is sad to see less of Audrey as a player, we are all hugely supportive and proud of her efforts to develop as a referee. Referees are massively important to the game as there’s no match without them. They’re also hugely important for the profile of the club within the branch. On a personal level it’s also a great way to get fit and stay involved in the game after playing. So if you’re interested in refereeing get in contact with Tallaght Rugby Club through our contacts page and we can talk about your options.