Midleton 31, Sunday’s Well 5.
There could have been little complaints with the final result. The ‘Well and Midleton is always a fierce rivalry but this weekend rugby was very much in perspective. Midleton had a very traumatic and emotional week as they had to bury one of their players; a great colleague and friend; Cormac Ryan. The ‘Well pass on our condolences to the club and Cormac’s family and friends.
Still there came a time when players returned to the playing field. On the game itself; it was a very tight affair approaching half-time. Midleton’s captain; Stuart Lee; a product of the Sunday’s Well underage system scored a penalty as Midleton held the upper-hand on territory and possession.
As the half was closing out; the ‘Well had their best period. The pack produced a powerful scrum that yielded a penalty. After kicking to the corner they secured the line-out and produced a magnificent maul. After spreading out the ball they won a penalty with Brian Derham’s effort getting caught in the wind and being pushed just wide.
As the half was about to close out; Midleton had a scrum half=way between the ‘Well try-line and half-way. The emotion of the occasion really seemed to inspire their players as they carried the ball with a panache and ferocity that saw them frequently burst over the gain-line. The ‘Well defence scrambled to keep their line in tact but Midleton showed enough patience to eventually see Rob Smyyth touch-down.
The second-half started in a similar fashion to how the first ended; with persistent pressure by the East Cork side seeing Julian Power touch down. The momentum was very much with the hosts and they secured the bonus point through further tries by Bryan Moore and MArk Corby; with Lee finishing with a perfect record from the tee.
The ‘Well finished with a try by Ryan Buckley after a good flowing move but it was no doubt that it was Midleton’s day.
Things remain extremely tight with the ‘Well currently sixth; only two points off a promotion play-off spot but also a similar number of points away from the relegation play-off.
Scorers: Midleton: R Smyth, J Power, B Moore, M Corby tries; S Lee pen, 4 cons.
Sunday’s Well: R Buckley try.
Midleton: D Murray;R Hogan, B Cottle, R Horgan, J Power; S Lee (c), R Smyth; G McIntyre, B Moore, M Corby; D Broderick, G Mullins; A Ross, L Obersby, R Carey. Replacements: A McCarthy, A O’Brien, F O’Connell, W Casey, J Deady.
Sunday’s Well: J Kiernan; R O’Keeffe, B Derham, R Buckley, J Ruiz-Herrera; B Pope, E Geary (c); M Moynihan, J Barry, I Murphy; J Barnes, J Gardiner; S Desmond, C Jouve, C O’Brien. Replacements: C Kelliher, G O’Sullivan, M McCarthy, D Lacey, J Featherstone.
Referee: A Mitchell (IRFU)