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Ulster Bank League: Lansdowne go top with six-try blitz against Shannon

The Dublin side were in unstoppable form while Young Munster and Garryowen kept up the winning habit.

Matt Healy scored a brace of tries for Lansdowne.
Matt Healy scored a brace of tries for Lansdowne.
Image: INPHO

TWO WEEKS INTO the 2012/13 season and only three sides remain unbeaten.

Lansdowne charged to the top of the Ulster Bank League table on Sunday after annihilating a sluggish Shannon on the back pitch at the Aviva Stadium.

Shannon, who featured Munster player Luke O’Dea off the bench, lost 48-7 and are firmly rooted to the foot of the table.

Lansdowne, coached by Ireland Under 20 boss Mike Ruddock, were sensational in the first half and had a bonus point wrapped up before the break when winger Matt Healy got his brace after running in his side’s fourth try.

Flanker Charlie Butterworth looked very impressive in the opening half and the centre partnership for the home side, Sean Carey and Shane Gahan, were a handful all game.

The best score of the game was Healy’s first, scored with less than five minutes on the clock, as Butterworth powered past three defenders before scrum-half Paddy O’Driscoll instigated a slick passing move across the backline that was finished off by the left winger.

Shannon’s John Shine got the solitary response, through a dive over from the base of a ruck, but it was game over at half-time with the scoreline reading 32-7.

Familiar faces

Tom Sexton’s last competitive outing had been for Leinster in their 34-6 defeat to Connacht in the RaboDirect Pro12.

The young prop was part of a dominant Lansdowne pack that won numerous first-half penalties and, with the result effectively sealed, was replaced at the break.

There were some familiar faces in the crowd at Lansdowne FC, with Ireland forwards coach Gert Smal in attendance as well as Leinster prop Mike Ross, who was there to support his cousin, Clive Ross, in the Lansdowne back row.

Craig Ronaldson, who scored 18 points in the match, added two second-half penalties and there were further tries for captain Ross McCarron and substitute John Coleman.

Results round-up

Garryowen emerged from a Castle Avenue encounter with Clontarf with a win and four points. Holding a narrow 6-3 lead at the break, the Limerick side were indebted to Conan Doyle, with two tries, and Jamie Gavin for their 23-13 win.

Young Munster followed up their 36-3 opening day defeat of Shannon with a tight 16-14 win over 2012 champions St Mary’s College.

UL Bohemians, with Munster and Ireland U-20 star JJ Hanrahan playing at out-half, were good value for their 23-15 victory over Cork Constitution.

Dolphin recorded their first win of the season, and claimed the McCarthy-O’Reilly Trophy in the process, when they edged Old Belvedere 21-15 at Musgrave Park.

Read: Pro12: Team of the Week

Read: Cork secure ladies senior football glory

About the author:

Patrick McCarry

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