23 Oct 2018
Birr's 1st XV played there fourth match of the season against the Midland Warriors (Moate) on Sun 21st Oct at 3pm in Birr. Going into the match Birr where in 4th place in the Leinster League Division 2 table and were expecting a tough physical encounter with their neighboring club who where currently in 5th place.
From kick-off a well drilled Birr side made good ground up the pitch causing the visitors to give away two penalties which where converted by Brendan Heffernan. At the restart Birr carried well into the Warriors half of the pitch until a wide ball was intercepted by a well timed Warriors winger who ran it under the post to score a converted try.
Not put off by the sudden turn of events Birr progressed to the Warriors 5 meter line with a well controlled game plan orchestrated by scrum half Conor O'Meara and outhalf Alan Dodd. Under extreme pressure, from a strong scrum by the Birr pack, the Warriors eventually conceded a penalty try to bring the score to Birr 13 - 7 Midland Warriors.
With the Warriors on the back foot, and under manned, Birr looked to capitalize by running the ball up the pitch but a good scramble defense by Warriors made tough work of it. Eventually numbers made the difference when a pass from Thomas Kennedy put Eoin Gannon over for an unconcerned try. Half time score, Birr 18 - 7 Midland Warriors.
Birr started the second half strong when impact sub David Guinan used his unexpected pace and handoffs to burst though the Warriors defense, sidestep there fullback, and score under the post. Converted by Brendan Heffernan this brought th score to Birr 25 - 7 Midland Warriors.
Looking like Birr might run away with the game the Warriors took it up a notch and made good ground with strong carries from there forwards and backs culminating in 2 tries to the visitors. Score Birr 25 - 19 Warriors.
With only 10 minutes to go Birr went on the attack with strong carries from Mick O'Dwyer, Phillip Haslam, Michael Keane and Darra Culbert until warriors conceded a penalty on there 5 meter line. Again utilizing there strong scrum Birr pushed Warriors back over there own line to score a great pack try by Alan Guiman. Score Birr 30 - 19 Midland Warriors.
Birr spent the remaining minutes of the game defending a determined warriors side with great tackles from Lorcan Conn and other Birr players. Warriors weren't to be denied however when they scored in the last play of the game to make the final score Birr 30 - 26 Midland Warriors.
Once the rest of the matches in the division had finished that day Bir's hard work payed off when they moved into 3rd place in the division, 2 points behind 1st place Edenderry. If you are interested in playing senior men's rugby call down to training every Tuesday and Friday @ 8pm at our Ballyegan pitches or contact our head coach Christy Hogan - 0868392053.
Tries: Penalty Try (1), Eoin Gannon (1), David Guinan (1), Alan Guinan (1)
Conversions: Brendan Heffernan (1)
Penalties: Brendan Heffernan (2)
Man Of The Match: Alan Guinan
Starting team: Brendan Heffernan, Michael Keane, Tomás Kennedy, Darra Culbert, Lorcan Conn, Alan Dodd, Conor O'Meara, Paul Donohoe, Martin Lyons, Michael O Dwyer, Simon Eades, Philip Haslam, Eoin Gannon, Jack Delahunt, Alan Guinan
Subs: Michael Madden, Daire Stapleton, David Guinan, Simon Moylan, Tim O Connor, Jeremy Hichens, Kevin O’Keeffe, Noel Lane