Dublin City Exiles RLFC

Exiles See Off Athboy

A late, re-fixed KO, a brisk breeze, and an unknown, newly formed Athboy team...that’s what stood in the way of the Exiles on Wednesday 28th of May.

After a positive but disappointing opening loss to the Longhorns, the lads were chomping at the bit to get the league campaign back on track. We had been working hard on sorting out the nitty gritty details of why things didn’t go our way in the previous match up, and had tightened our attacking prowess.

We won the toss and chose to play against the wind, facing away from the Terenure club house on their state of the art 4G astro pitch. Athboy launched the ball down into the left hand corner to start the game off.

A few indiscretions from Athboy allowed the Exiles to move up the pitch into a promising position.

Tackle 4 came and Tapley wriggled over on the right-hand side to open the account for the Exiles. Conversion was missed leaving the score at 4-0. Kicking the back into Exiles allowed some of the big forwards to truck up the pitch. Some nice interplay put the industrious McCarthy to power over on the left hand side. Conversion drifted wide. 8-0 Exiles.

The account was opened again shortly after by Rhatigan, showing some great power and agility to dive over out wide. 12-0 Exiles. Pressure came back on from Athboy, making some big carries and chopping the big ball carriers. This forced the Exiles to run some attacking patterns. On tackle 3, Cox pulled the strings masterfully to put Treanor through a gap untouched to score just off the left-hand post. Conversion was good from McCarthy to push the score to 18-0. This didn’t stop Athboy coming out of the blocks fast, and only for some very impressive defensive displays, the attack was pressed out into sideline. Special mention goes to Gallagher for putting in some massive hits behind the gain line.

Against the run of play and from a turnover, C Kelly decided to put some of his ropey dance moves and step, pop, jive and twist over on the right hand side of the try line from distance, as opposed to the easy 2 on 1 pass that was on! Conversion missed, score 22-0.

The Athboy lads didn’t let their heads drop and kept the pressure on, eventually barrelling over under the posts with an easy conversion to get on the scoreboard. 22-6. The kickoff was re-gathered by the Exiles and some wiry running from the centres resulted in a offside penalty. We ran 2 big plays which allowed Treanor to get a long run at the retreating defensive line and barrel over in a on the left-hand side. Conversion was missed, score 26-6. Duff was instrumental in the build up with his lines and arm-cannon hand-off.

The final play of the half was another Exiles score as McCarthy forced himself over after some tidy dummy lines. Conversion missed, and half time was rang in. 30-6.
Athboy refused to lie down, and started the second half the stronger. The pressure they applied before halftime was back in spades and they crashed over in the corner. 30-10.

20 points was a big but not insurmountable difference to overcome. W Kelly led from the front with some excellent leadership and by marshalling the backs, allowed O’Callaghan to cut back inside and jink over the whitewash. This score was vital in curbing the comeback that Athboy were orchestrating. Moments later, our bulldozing Saffa Borchert picked a beauty of a support line off Rhatigan’s seemingly never ending run down the middle of the pitch to add to our tally, which was converted by McCarthy. 40-0.

15 minutes left on the clock, legs on both teams no doubt full of lactic acid, caused the game to become a little disjointed. Exiles were able to bring on some very experienced players off the bench and used their rolling subs shrewdly to allow Weaver to run riot on attack.

Numerous tackle busts from McCarthy and perfectly weighted passes from Thompson (with a glorious lid) let W Kelly sneak over the try line. We believe the move was planned but we can never be sure as the dialogue exchange between Coach Egan, Cox and W Kelly was incomprehensible.

The floodgates opened with O’Callaghan (fox) getting over for his second and the final play of the game show cased the finest try of the night straight from the kick off. Both sets of players bought the dummy that we reckon was shrouded from his grizzly beard, and McCarthy shuffled up the pitch. He showed an ability to change direction without slowing down and stepped the covering defence and went in under the posts. Final score 58-10.

A growing trend domestic rugby league is that it’s difficult to bring your strongest team on the away games. We know for a fact that Athboy have much more in the tank and we’re relishing the return fixture in a few weeks.

Special mention goes to our starting prop Ramsden. His first ever game of Rugby (in either code) was marked with a now patented bosh, his skills have developed very quickly over the last few weeks and he’s absorbed everything that he’s been told, and demonstrating an eager to learn attitude. W Kelly also showed his experience by leading the attack and bringing the best out of players around him, often the player who put others through for scores. Gallagher we suspect may need a vaccination of some kind as his hunger to bury opposition (and team mates in training) is almost rabid. A thing of beauty in rugby league and definitely one to watch this season! Player of the match goes to Denny McCarthy. Scored 3 tries, kicked beautifully and his experience in defence meant everyone around him knew what was going on, especially when Athboy turned on the pressure in around the half time mark.

    Team List:

Columba Kelly

Leo Kelly

John Rhatigan

Matt O’Callaghan

Jordan Tapley

Andrew Thompson

Adam Cox (VC)

Barry Treanor (C)

Wayne Kelly

Josh Ramsden

Denny McCarthey

Alex Duff (VC)

James Gallagher

Cliff Newton

Marc Keating

Ryan Borchert

Eddie Weaver

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