Tag Archives: UBL

AIL 2B: Sligo fail to Rainey

Sligo RFC 17 – Rainey Old Boys RFC 27
Sligo slumped to their fifth loss of the 18/19 All Ireland League Division 2B campaign with a disappointing 10point defeat to Magherafelt outfit Rainey Old Boys at Strandhill on Saturday. The northern visitors lorded the possession stakes and outscored the locals by three tries to two as Sligo struggled to retain possession for any meaningful period throughout the encounter.
Despite the heavy midweek rain, Hamilton park was in excellent condition, with little or no breeze when the teams took to the field, and it was Sligo that were first to put the scorekeeper to work with a Jack Keegan penalty after 10 minutes. Continue reading

AIL 2B: Sligo fall short against Wanderers

Sligo RFC 20 – Wanderers FC 28

Sligo hosted Wanderers FC in their second home All Ireland League match of the season, but despite scoring four try’s to the visitors three, had to settle for a single match point as the Landsdowne road based outfit held an eight point lead at the final whistle.

Mark Butler stops Wanderers’ in their tracks

Despite the incessant heavy Strandhill rain on Saturday morning the pitch was in excellent condition as the teams crossed the whitewash. Sligo kicked off playing towards the airport end but it was Wanderers who took the initiative and made an early attack on the Sligo line. Sligo’s defence prevented the line from being breached and a strong scrum earned a relieving penalty.

Shane O Hehir waits to pounce as Mata Fifita puts in a big tackle

Wanderers continued to press and eventually opened their account with a Peter Brougham penalty with fifteen minutes on the clock.

Sligo responded immediately. From the restart the Wanderers clearance was collected by Sligo’s Callum Goddard. The Full back counter attacked into midfield before linking up with Philip Carter. Carter was held on the ten metre line and Sligo quickly recycled. Scrum half Brendan Cunningham moved the ball infield to Mark Butler who timed his pass perfectly to put Kuba Wojtkowicz through the gap. The rampaging prop burst through the defence and used all of his considerable power to make it all the way to the line for Sligo’s opening score.

Jason Havea on the attack

It was Wanderers turn to react, and a sustained period of pressure on the Sligo line resulted in centre Rob O’Byrne crashing over to reclaim the lead. Brougham converted and Wanderers were up by five.

Again Sligo hit back when good work from Sean Mullin and Mata Fifita gave position in the visitors 22. Shane Boyle made a strong carry followed up by further good play from Shane O’Hehir and Wojtkowicz. The play continued right and Butlers long pass to Goddard allowed the full back the space to feed Carter who squeezed over in the corner to level the scores.

Right on the stroke of half time the visitors regained the lead. A penalty on half way was kicked to the corner. Wanderers used their pick and drive to work the ball close to the line and a switch move in midfield caused enough hesitation to allow Martin O’Neill the space to crash over at the posts. Brougham converted and the blue side went into the interval with a seven point lead.

Sligo’s Kuba Wojtkowicz keeps Wanderers at bay

Ten minutes into the second half the visitors pushed the lead out to ten points with another well struck Brougham penalty before moving further ahead with try out wide from winger Martin Bosch.

Sligo hit back with an excellently taken score when a sweeping backline move following a scrum on the left gave Goddard the chance to use his pace to race in to the right hand corner.

Wanderers closed out their account with another Brougham penalty with five minutes remaining before Ryan Feehily earned a try bonus point for Sligo with an excellent finish in the right corner.

Scrum half Brendan Cunningham makes a dart for the try line

Sligo now sit in sixth place in the division 2B table and next up is a trip to the capital to lock horns with second placed Greystones RFC. The match kicks off at 2.30 at Dr Hickey Park next Saturday.

Sligo: Calum Goddard, Sean Mullin, Ryan Feehily, Mata Fifita, Philip Carter, Mark Butler, Brendan Cunningham, Kuba Wojtkowicz, Shane O’Hehir, Tom Gormely, Jason Havea, Ciaran Cassidy, Shane Boyle, Matt Davey, Ross Hickey, Conor Mitchell, Ross O’Boyle, Rob Holian, Matthew Cosgrove, Enda Gavin

AIL 2B: Sligo fall short in Barnhall

MU Barnhall RFC 25 – Sligo RFC 17

Sligo travelled to Kildare last Saturday for their third All Ireland League match of the season to take on table toppers MU Barnhall. The home outfit were sitting pretty on top of the Division 2B table with maximum points from the first two rounds, but Sligo had shown their mettle with a bonus point win over a fancied Dungannon outfit the previous week and were well up for the task of challenging the league leaders.

Storm Callum may have abated but the match day conditions proved tricky with a heavy drizzle making handling difficult for both sides despite an excellent track underfoot. Sligo opened well and dominated the early exchanges. The first opportunity for points came with a penalty award in front of the Barnhall posts but Sligo turned down the kick and opted for the scrum. The locals dug in and forced the penalty and the chance to open the scoring was lost.

The home team made the most of the reprieve and worked their way up the park and with virtually their first foray into Sligo territory, a sustained period of pick and drives resulted in Barnhall’s opening try. Continue reading

AIL 2B: Sligo earn five from Dungannon

Sligo RFC 33 – Dungannon RFC 25

Sligo picked up their first win of the 2018/19 All Ireland League campaign with a bonus point victory over a strong Dungannon outfit at Hamilton park on Saturday. Sligo scored five trys to the visitors three, securing the all important try bonus point and sending their visitors home with nothing to show for their effort.

Playing towards the airport end Sligo kicked off and an excellent challenge from Phillip Carter secured early possession for the hosts. Sligo looked to move the ball through the phases with Rob Holian and Jason Havea carrying well in the opening exchanges. But despite Sligo having the lions share of possession early on it was the visitors that struck first when a sweeping backline move culminated in a touchdown in the left corner.

The conversion drifted wide but Dungannon increased their advantage with a penalty from the Sligo 22 with ten minutes on the clock.

Sligo knuckled down and worked their way back into the game. Shane O’Hehir was successfully hitting the target at the lineout, Matt Davey was a menace in open play and the returning Mata Fifita was lording the midfield battle.

Sligo opened their account with fifteen minutes gone. A well worked move opened up the Dungannon defence and Ryan Feehily finished under the posts. Niall Gray converted and Sligo were within a point.

Sligo continued to press and took the lead with twenty-five minutes gone. Mark Butler expertly placed a penalty into the left corner. The forwards took over drove for the line with Shane Boyle on hand to touch down. Gray struck an excellent conversion and Sligo were ahead by six.

Sligo moved further ahead five minutes later. An excellent backline left to right movement gave Calum Goddard the chance to use his blistering pace to scorch the defence and race to the line for Sligo’s third of the day and move the score to 19-8.

With five minutes left in the half Dungannon struck back with a converted try on the right from a powerful driving maul to move within four of Sligo. The visitors had their tails up and looked to take the lead before the interval. A penalty award positioned play five yards from the Sligo line. A series of scrums ensued with the powerful Dungannon scrum putting huge pressure on the Sligo eight. The home scrum stood firm however, and forced the concession of a penalty and Sligo went into the break in front.

The northerners purple patch continued after the break with a try out wide with eight minutes played, earning a one point lead,but Sligo hit back immediately when Feehily intercepted a long pass in the 22 and raced in under the posts. Gray converted and Sligo were up by six and the try bonus point was secured.

With fifteen minutes remaining Sligo hit again. A penalty on the 10 metre line was dispatched to the corner and a well worked lineout move allowed powerhouse prop Kuba Wojtkowicz the chance to drive over the defence and touch down left of the posts. Grays conversion pushed Sligo’s total to thirty three and importantly a two score lead with ten left on the clock.

The visitors rallied for one last effort and were rewarded with a late score out wide but it proved to be just a consolation score as the missed conversion was the last act of an excellent game of rugby football.

Next for Sligo is trip eastwards to take on table toppers NUIM Barnhall. The Sligo confidence will be high but a huge effort will be required to earn success at Parsonstown. The match kicks off at 2.30 on Saturday.

Sligo Niall Gray, Calum Goddard, Ryan Feehily (co-captain), Mata Fifita, Philip Carter, Mark Butler, Brendan Cunningham, Kuba Wojtkowicz, Shane O’Hehir, Thomas Gormely, Jason Havea, Rob Holian, Shane Boyle, Matt Davey, Ross Hickey. Reps. Ross O’Boyle, Conor Mitchell, Ciaran Cassidy, Christian Nielsen, Enda Gavin.

UBL: No joy for Sligo at the ‘Well

Sundays Well RFC 20 – Sligo RFC 17

Sligo travelled south to take on Cork city natives Sundays Well in the opening match of the 2018/19 Ulster Bank League division 2B campaign, but had to settle for a losing bonus point, as the Leesiders ran out winners by 3 points in a closely fought contest at Independent Park on Saturday.

Playing on the recently installed 4G pitch with ideal conditions for open rugby the home team kicked off but it was Sligo who dominated the early exchanges. Sligo’s game plan of keeping width on the ball and moving the physical Sundays Well pack around the park gained reward with a well struck Niall Gray penalty after 8 minutes to open the scoring.

Tom Gormley and Mattie Davey ready to put in the tackle

The Cork men responded from the restart and put pressure on Sligo’s exit plan and a blocked clearance kick was collected by the home team and the opening try was conceded by the visitors. The successful conversion put the score at 7-3 with 12 minutes gone.

Sligo knuckled down and worked their way back into the game. Strong carries from Kuba Wojtkowicz, Thomas Gormley  and Rob Holian put Sligo in position in the ‘Well 22 and the ball was moved quickly left to right through the hands of Mark Butler, Ryan Feehily and Enda Gavin allowing Philip Carter the chance to squeeze in at the corner.

Niall gray superb touchline conversion gave Sligo a 3 point advantage with 25 minutes gone.

Sligo’s lead only lasted for 5 minutes as the ‘Well equalised on the half hour with a penalty from in front of the Sligo posts. Unfortunately for Sligo the influential Diarmuid O’Dowd Hill had to retire at this point with a hamstring injury.

Just before the break Sligo struck again with a superb score. With Sundays Well applying pressure in the visitors 22, Sligo opted to move the ball wide to the right. Calum Goddard received on the wing and rounded his man to bring play to the half way before linking with Feehily. Feehily carried into the home 22 before linking up with supporting scrum half Brendan Cunningham who raced in under the posts to recapture the lead for Sligo. Grays successful conversion was the final action of the first half.

Sundays well regained parity with 55 minutes gone with a try and conversion following a sustained period of pressure in the Sligo 22 before a penalty in the 65 minute moved the Leesiders ahead and proved to be the final score of an entertaining encounter.

While coaches Paddy Pearson and Jason East will be disappointed with the loss, the losing bonus point is a valuable gain and comfort will be taken with the fact their charges demonstrated that they are well capable of competing at this level.

Sligo Niall Gray, Calum Goddard, Ryan Feehily, Enda Gavin, Philip Carter, Mark Butler, Brendan Cunningham, Kuba Wojtkowicz, Shane O’Hehir, Tom Gormley, Ciaran Cassidy, Rob Holian, Shane Boyle, Diarmuid O’Dowd Hill, Jason Havea, reps: Craig Adams, Ross O’Boyle, Matt Davey, Ross Hickey, Sean Mullin, Christian Nielsen

2B or not 2B – Winner Takes All

This Saturday, 14th April at 2.30pm, the final league game of the season goes down to the wire, with the top two teams, both on 51 points after 17 games, scheduled to play each other, to decide who gets the one automatic qualifying spot to get into Division 2B of the Ulster Bank All-Ireland League.

This fixture is like something out of a Hollywood movie, complete with all the bad clichés and catchphrases. It really is a case of winner takes all. Sligo have home advantage and are hoping for a huge turnout from their supporters. Free entry for all under 18s, adults €5.

In the wake of the highly successful Strictly Sligo Rugby fundraiser, anyone who shows a Strictly Sligo Rugby programme will also get free admission.

The final pre-match lunch of the season is at 1p.m. at a cost of €20p.p., which includes complimentary wine and entry to the match. Places are limited, so contact John on 087 6212414 to book your place. There will be a cheese reception post-match, complete with prosecco bar, followed by live music with Dean Mahon.

This promises to be the clash of the titans and one match you do not want to miss.

UBL: All to play for with two games to go

Sligo RFC 31 – Bruff RFC 10

Sligo put themselves firmly back into contention for a shot at the Ulster Bank League Division 2C title with a comprehensive 4 try bonus point win over a sturdy Bruff outfit at Strandhill on Saturday.

With two rounds of games remaining Sligo are sitting in second position one point behind leaders Thomond RFC and joint with third placed Malahide RFC. The sting in the tail being that Sligo’s two final league games commence with an away visit to Malahide followed by a potential mouth watering season deciding finale at home to Thomond. The ball is in Sligo’s court and two wins over their nearest rivals will see the long coveted Division 2c title residing in Hamilton park for the next 12 months. Continue reading

UBL: Sligo get back to winning ways

Sligo RFC 45 – Bective RFC 0

Sligo put their recent 3 match losing streak blip behind them in emphatic fashion as they put visiting Bective RFC to the sword with a comprehensive victory at Hamilton Park on Saturday.
Sligo scored seven try’s without reply securing the all important bonus point which moves the north westerners back into second place in the division 2c table, one point behind leaders Thomond RFC with four games left to play.

Captain Shane Boyle leads his team on

On a sunny Strandhill spring afternoon with little or no breeze Sligo kicked off playing towards the airport end. Visitors Bective signalled their intent early, immediately bringing their pacey back line into play but Sligo’s defence stood strong and the early threat was negated with strong defence from centres Mata Fifita and Mark Butler. Continue reading