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Naas 39 - Old Belvedere 12   25/01/2020

Old Belvedere traveled to Naas determined to gain revenge for their defeat by the same opposition last month. However their hopes were shattered by a scintillating first half display by Naas, which meant that the destination of the points was already decided at the half-time whistle. In this forty minutes Old Belvedere had the better of possession and territory but Naas were clinical and ruthless when their chances arrived and led by no less than 29 points at the break.


A fine crowd turned up for this contest and within five minutes they saw Old Belvedere gift their hosts a score. Naas out-half Byran Croke kicked a high up and under which was well fielded by the full-back Fergus Flood just outside his own 22. However his attempted pass to James McKeown when straight to Naas centre Craig Adams who strolled under the posts for the opening try. Peter Osborne added the simple conversion and Naas led by seven.


Within four minutes that lead was stretched to 12. Some good carries by Graham Reynolds and Ryan Casey put Old Belvedere on the back foot, and when the ball was spinned wide there was a big overlap out to the right. Naas used this well and quickly transferred the ball out to Eoin Walsh who scored in the corner. The conversion attempt by Osborne was just wide but Naas had received a dream start.


Things got better and better for the home side. On 16 minutes Peter Osborne split the Old Belvedere defence apart when making a great break through the centre, and his long looping pass to Niall Delahunt was finished off in style by the winger. Then on 33 minutes Gary Kavanagh made a break from the base of a scrum, when tackled he off loaded to Johnny Holmes who passed on to Ryan Casey to score and secure a try scoring bonus point for Naas. With Peter Osborne converting both Naas led by no less than 26 points.


As stated it was not as if Old Belvedere had no ball to work with. They had plenty of possession but were met by a stubborn Naas defence in which Adam Coyle, Paul Monahan, Peter King and James Hawkey tackled everything that moved. To compund the misery for Old Belvedere they conceded a penalty on the stroke of half-time for a high tackle and the successful kick by Peter Osborne left the half-time score 29-0 in favour of Naas.
To their credit Old Belvedere never stopped trying and had a great chance on 52 minutes. Johnny Holmes was penalised for a high tackle and the visitors dispatched it to touch. From the line-out they went through a series of pick and drives but again the home side defended superbly. However Naas were penalised for hands in a ruck and Belvedere received another penalty. This time they took a scrum and from this they moved the ball wide, but a knock on by Dylan Simmons halted the attack and summed up their day.


However they finally managed to get on the scoresheet on 56 minutes when Justin Leonard intercepted a pass 30 yards out and sprinted clear to score a try which he converted himself. Within five minutes any thoughts of miraculous fightback were extinguished by Naas. Bryan Croke put in a delightful chip behind the Belvedere backs and Craig Adams won the chase for the touchdown to make the score 34-7.
There was still time for another score for both sides. On 67 minutes Jack Keating scored a fine individual try for Belvedere and Eoin Walsh finished the scoring when rounding off a good Naas move to leave the final score 39-12.
So a very impressive display by Naas and one that will make their upcoming opponents sit up and take notice. Next for them is an away fixture to St. Mary’s College, on Friday, February 14th. Kick-off is at 8pm and all support will be greatly appreciated.


Naas: Peter Osborne, Niall Delahunt, Craig Adams, James Hawkey, Matt Stapleton, Bryan Croke, Gary Kavanagh, Adam Coyle, Graham Reynolds, Peter King, Paul Monahan, David Benn, Johnny Holmes, Ryan Casey, Eoin Walsh. Replacements: Conor McCormack, Stephen Lackey, Paulie Tolofua, Tom Brady, Ben Swindlehurst, Rob Wynne.
Old Belvedere: Fergus Flood, Jack Keating, James McKeown, Dylan Simmons, Ariel Robles, Justin Leonard , Aaron Atkinson, Gerry O’Hehir, Joe Horan, James Pollard, Ger Hill, Dean Moore, Jack Kelly, Ethan Baxter, Peter McCague. Replacements: Adam Howard, David St. Ledger, Darragh Henry, Matt Grogan, Conor Owende.


Other Naas RFC Results this weekend:
Under-20s: Naas 50. Seapoint 12.
Naas Women 17. Gorey 22.




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