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  Under 15 Leinster Cup Semi final

Kilkenny 22 Naas 5

On a glorious sunny day at Athy RFC Kilkenny Under 15s stormed into a Leinster final with a hard hitting, high tempo display of cup rugby at its best.

Kilkenny suffocated the ambitions of a confident Naas side with a relentless, well- disciplined defence that restricted their opponents to a single score over the 60 minutes. Again and again Kilkenny sent a big Naas pack into reverse in the scrums and hounded them in the line outs and rucks until the pressure told and four fine tries were scored.

Number 8 Matthew McWey had a hand in all four tries, bagging two himself, one at the end of each half. For the first, the Kilkenny captain finished off a series of punishing scrums by picking and driving over from 10 metres and for the second, he capitalised on good drives from open side Aiden McDonald and second row Tom Cuddihy to touch down by the left corner flag.

Not content with this contribution, McWey chased and won the ball from the second half kick off. Prop Eoin Clarkson drove it forward before Kilkenny’s two powerful, hard running second rows Cian Smith and Cuddihy surged ahead irresistibly with the latter diving over, again by the left corner. Out half Jake McDonald was very unlucky to see his conversion attempt come back off the post.

Ten minutes into the second half centre Kevin Mullen made a big tackle on half way and the ubiquitous McWey was there to rob the ball and break up the touchline. He kicked the ball over the try line and watched in delight as inside centre David Jordan won the race to touch the ball down. Jordan’s try was just reward for a tireless display of straight running and rock solid tackling. Mc Wey and No. 6 Noel Whelan – does he ever have a bad game?- may have felt that getting into double figures would see them at the top of the defensive chart, but a scarcely credible 15 tackles from Jordan comfortably won him that accolade.

On the final whistle Kilkenny’s squad members and big support celebrated a thrilling win that sees them look forward eagerly to their final in Donnybrook on Bank Holiday Monday, May 2nd.

Squad: Mark Carrigan, Ben Devlin, Eoin Clarkson, Tom Cuddihy, Cian Smith, Noel Whelan, Aiden McDonald, Matthew McWey, Ian Buckley, Jake McDonald, David Jordan, Kevin Mullen, Conor Delaney, Luke Rafter, Peter Hutchinson, Jason Hoyne, Shawn Fitzgerald, John Hanrick, Jim Moore, Shane O’Carroll, Sean Brennan, Lyndon Brannigan

Niall McDermott, 10th April, 2011