Try: Paul Cunningham
Pen: Morgan Farrell 3

Challenge Match
Iveagh Grounds

Tallaght RFC got off to a positive start this season with a hard-earned win over local rivals Guinness. The game was fairly scrappy and scoreless for the first 20 minutes but then Tallaght number eight Emil Wyrebiak exploded off a scrum ten metres into his own half. He went on an amazing run busting at least seven tackles as he brought the ball to within ten metres of the Guinness line. Guinness committed an offence at the breakdown and new Tallaght out-half Morgan Farrell punished them with a penalty for Tallaght to lead 3-0. Sadly Wyrebiak had to leave the field shortly after his explosive run, his ankle injury most likely caused by him not wearing proper rugby socks.

Unfortunately, straight from the kick off, Tallaght conceded a try as Farrell’s clearance kick was charged down for Guinness to run in a try. Guinness converted and tagged on a penalty to lead 10-3 at half time. New Tallaght coach Tom Leigh rallied his troops at half time and they emerged a more focused unit in the second half.

Despite playing into the wind, Tallaght’s pack started well in the second half with strong carrying from thirty-year-old Tony McManus. Club Stalwart Brian Tyrrell finally found his true position of second row, having a blinder disrupting the Guinness lineouts while also carrying strongly in his typically abrasive manner. After good phases of pick and drives, Tallaght won a penalty that they kicked to touch. They mauled the ball successfully over the line with skipper Paul Cunningham getting the final touchdown. Farrell’s conversion attempt was unlucky to hit off the post but Tallaght were back in the game at 10-8.

Tallaght’s backs now came into the game and each of Colm O’Reilly, Karl Seagrave and John Cowan all made positive runs. Eventually Tallaght were awarded a penalty ten metres inside the Guinness half. It was a difficult kick into the win but Farrell nailed it to give Tallaght a one point lead. Guinness attempted to hit back but Farrell pinned them back with an excellent tactical kick into the corner. Guinness transgressed again and Farrell sealed the win with another penalty to make it 14-10.

Guinness made a late drive at the line looking for a try to win the game but Tallaght’s defence was strong and they held out well.


Jim O’Connor