A late try edged Dunmore to a 17-13 victory over Buccaneers Seconds in the second round of the Cawley Cup Pool 2 played at Dubarry Park on Sunday. Although this was a greatly improved effort by a very youthful home squad, they will be most disappointed to have allowed the visitors depart with their win. The Pirates played the more attractive rugby in difficult weather conditions but the more seasoned Galway outfit made the most of Buccs not clearing their lines sufficiently in the closing stages when leading by the minimum.

In wet and wild weather, Buccs made the perfect start. Lasha Laoshvilli swiftly tapped a penalty in midfield and the ball was moved smartly to Jensen Nagle on the left flank. The winger had some work to do but left the Dunmore cover in his slipstream to dot down between the uprights for a super try after a mere 4 minutes. Sean Flynn tapped over the conversion and, in a high energy start, he added an 18th minute penalty following a sniping break by Michael Byrne that gave the Pirates a 10-0 lead.

But Buccaneers infringed from the restart and Dunmore got into the danger zone with the ensuing penalty to touch. There they forced their way over for a converted try totally against the run of play. In the closing stages of the half, the westerners applied fierce pressure that saw home flanker Robert Teape yellow carded. Nevertheless, gritty defending by Buccs saw them hold their 10-7 advantage at half-time.

Despite Teape’s prolonged sin-binning, Buccs enjoyed the better of the early second half exchanges but could not fashion a second try. Just before the second half water break, Dunmore took the lead with an unconverted try following a sustained spell of pressure. Buccaneers retort was instant with Teape, Sean Doyle and Cedric Forkin combining to earn a penalty which Flynn drilled over to regain the lead by the minimum at 13-12.

In the closing stages, the much smaller and lesser experienced Pirates crew dropped their tempo and consequently kept inviting Dunmore into their danger zone. They were punished for not clearing their lines efficiently when the visitors broke away for a try at the posts three minutes from time. The alert Ross Moony-Enraght denied the visitors adding the conversion but, despite their best endeavours, Buccs could not conjure up a late winning try.

Teape, Laoshvilli and Liam Doyle gave it their all in the forwards battle while pocket sized duo Flynn and Nagle caught the eye in the backline where Byrne and Eoin O’Reilly were prominent. Despite defeat, this is a young squad of immense potential with at least ten being products of last season’s U-20 panel.

BUCCANEERS:- M.Byrne; J.Nagle, H.Hughes, R.Enraght-Moony, C.Rooney-Digan; S.Flynn, E.O’Reilly (captain); C.Forkin, D.Buckley, L.Laoshvilli; J.Scouler, T.Corcoran; C.O’Grady, R.Teape and L.Doyle. Replacements:- M.Ti Boshi (for Forkin, 20 mins), S.Flynn, Snr. (for Laoshvilli, 20 mins), L.Laoshvilli (for Ti Boshi, inj. 36 mins), K.Connolly (for O’Grady, h/t), T.Thompson (for Flynn, Snr. h/t), A.Flanagan (for O’Reilly, h/t), C.O’Grady (for Doyle, 60 mins), E.O’Reilly (for Flynn, 60 mins), S.Flynn (for Flanagan, inj. 73 mins) and S.Flynn, Snr. (for Scouler, inj. 76 mins).