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Belvedere begin Senior Cup campaign with impressive 15-point victory over Roscrea

Beaten finalists in last year’s competition, the 12-time champions dominated this contest.

Belvedere's Justin Leonard (left) celebrates with Bill Jennings.
Belvedere's Justin Leonard (left) celebrates with Bill Jennings.
Image: Tommy Dickson/INPHO

Belvedere College 34

Cistercian College Roscrea 19

Daire Walsh reports from Donnybrook 

BELVEDERE COLLEGE SENT out a statement of intent at Donnybrook this afternoon with an emphatic 15-point triumph over Cistercian College Roscrea in the Leinster Schools Senior Cup first round.

Beaten finalists in last year’s competition, the 12-time champions dominated this contest — a repeat of the 2015 and 2016 deciders — from the get-go. Despite the best efforts of Diarmuid Kilgallen for Roscrea, they progress to face Newbridge College in the last-eight.

After fly-half Justin Leonard split the uprights off an early penalty, Belvo centre Cailean Mulvaney powered past a series of covering tackles to dot down for an eighth-minute try. Roscrea subsequently lost Dylan Keane to injury, before suffering an additional setback to their challenge.

A Rory Dwyer clearance was superbly gathered by left-wing Matthew Grogan, who raced free for a sublime five-pointer.

Their opponents from the Offaly-Tipperary border fired back with a Kilgallen try, but it only provided their under-pressure defence with a temporary release. Following another relentless attacking spell inside the opposition ’22’, Dwyer touched down underneath the posts.

Leonard supplemented this score with a maiden bonus strike and he also converted a clinical Alekseiy Soroka finish to give Belvo a commanding 27-5 interval cushion.

Roscrea were much-improved after the resumption and were rewarded on 53 minutes. Out-half Darragh Tynan (son of head coach Alan) released the impressive Kilgallen for his second try of the proceedings.

His midfield partner Billy Foley was on hand to convert, giving his side a glimmer of hope in the process. While Aaron Coleman rounded off a breakaway Belvo move to eliminate any prospect of a final-quarter fightback, Roscrea did at least have the final say at the rain-soaked south Dublin venue.

Deep into second-half stoppage time, Bill Burns added a degree of respectability to the final outcome by squeezing over the whitewash on the right-hand side.

Belvedere College Scorers:

Tries: Cailean Mulvaney, Matthew Grogan, Rory Dwyer, Alekseiy Soroka, Aaron Coleman

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Conversions: Justin Leonard [3 from 5]

Penalties: Justin Leonard [1 from 1]

Cistercian College Roscrea Scorers:

Tries: Diarmuid Kilgallen 2, Bill Burns

Conversions: Billy Foley [2 from 3]

BELVEDERE COLLEGE: Rory Dwyer; Dylan O’Grady, Cailean Mulvaney (Cian Rogers ’36), John Meagher, Matthew Grogan (Daniel Hawkshaw ’61); Justin Leonard, Patrick Lysaght (Jack MacNiece ’55); Hugh Flood (Mateusz Galinski ’55), Andrew Synnott (Jonathan Sargent ’62), Conor Cagney; Alekseiy Soroka, Jed Jones (Cormac Yalloway ‘55); Conor Kelly (Jonathan Ross ’65), Eoghan Rutledge (Bill Jennings ’48), Aaron Coleman.

CISTERCIAN COLLEGE ROSCREA: Dylan Keane (Adam Dunne ‘8); Shane Mallon (Zach Whelehan ’58), Diarmuid Kilgallen, Billy Foley, Ben Murphy; Darragh Tynan, Jack Matthews (Conall Bird ’58); Jerry Cahir (Shane Connolly ’65), Ronan Loughnane (Conor Power ’65), Jack Egan (John McKeon ’40); Lucas Culliton, Darragh Loughnane (Martin Fallon ’44); Oisin McCloskey (Bill Burns ’58), Gavin Meagher, Joe Cronin.

Referee: Dermot Blake.


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