Tullamore RFC 32 – Sligo RFC 17
Following their Bateman Cup heroics last weekend Sligo were brought back down to earth with a bang by a hungry Tullamore outfit in the refixed Ulster Bank League fixture at Spollanstown on Saturday. The midlanders outscored Sligo by 6 try’s to 2 to claim the bonus point victory and send Sligo home empty handed.
With underfoot conditions proving challenging but little or no breeze evident, Sligo kicked off playing towards the clubhouse end. Tullamore had the better of the early exchanges but a missed Karl Dunne penalty after 5 minutes meant no reward was earned for the early dominance.
Tullamore stuck to their task and with 15 minutes gone picked up the opening score following some good continuity play from a scrum on the Sligo 10 metre line. Dunne was wide with the conversion.
Sligo were stirred into a response and hit back within 5 minutes. A penalty awarded on the halfway line was expertly dispatched to the corner by outhalf Mark Butler. Shane O’Hehir found Matthew Cosgrove in the lineout and the pack drove over the line with captain Shane Boyle on hand to touch down. Jack Keegan added a well struck conversion to put Sligo into the lead.
The lead was short lived however and Tullamore hit back with their second try following a turnover from a Sligo scrum.
Sligo again tried to respond but an error in a Sligo attack saw the ball spill loose and Tullamore centre Brian Geraghty reacted quickest , hacked the Boyle forward and won the race to the touch down. Dunne’s conversion set the halftime score to 17-7 in favour of the hosts.
Unfortunately for Sligo the pattern continued after the interval with the locals capitalising on a Sligo error to pick up the bonus point try.
Sligo gamely tried to respond but Tullamore were managing the greasy conditions more efficiently and picked off two more tries from Sligo errors before Sligo’s Mark Rooney grabbed a consolation score for his side at the death.
Sligo will look to put this blip behind them and get back to winning ways as they host Seapoint RFC next Saturday. The match kicks off at 2.30 at Hamilton Park.
Sligo : Jack Keegan, Calum Goddard, Mark Rooney, Mike Wells, Philip Carter, Mark Butler, Garry O’Hehir, Mark Keegan, Shane O’Hehir, Conor Mitchell, James Wilson, Ciaran Cassidy, Shane Boyle (Capt), Manu Parkin, Matthew Cosgrove. Reps Shane Mc Guinness, Ross O’Boyle, David Heath, Niall Gray, Sean Mullen.