Limavady 8 - 16 Donaghadee Rugby Club 1st XV: Lead at the Top of the League Extended!
Donaghadee Rugby Club's 1st XV extended their lead at the top of Qualifying League One to three points, with a 16-8 away victory against Limavady. The conditions meant that league form was irrelevant, being replaced with a test of which team could best deal with the conditions in a windswept Desmense Park.
Donaghadee dominated both possession and territory in the first half but had only two well taken Ricardo Santos penalties to show for this dominance.
Richard Miller and Kenny McCombe combined well and came closest to breaking down the home side’s defense on the 25th minute after good work from Chris Goode and David Thompson at the break down.
Half Time: Limavady 0 Donaghadee 6
Limavady started the second half strongly and scored their first points of the day within two minutes of the restart with a well taken penalty from their fullback.
Donaghadee, now playing into the wind, embraced the conditions and were able to do what they failed to do in the first half and retain possession for long periods of play, recycling the ball through numerous phases.
On the 50th minute Alastair Lockhart scored from Donaghadee’s finest move of the game. The lively scrum-half made a break on the blind side and fed the ball to Richard Miller whose line of attack allowed him to slice through the Limavady defence. Miller is enjoying a rich vein of form and used his much improved awareness to time a scoring pass to the supporting Lockhart who was able to finish the move that he had manufactured. Santos converted to give Donaghadee a 13-3 lead.
Santos maintained his 100% kick rate on the day in most challenging conditions on the 55th minute to give Donaghdee a 16-3 lead.
Bizarrely it was during a period that Limavady were reduced to 14 men, with the sin binning of their out-half, that they enjoyed their most fruitful spell of the game scoring on the 60th minute from a simple move that saw their second row crash over from close range.
Although Donaghadee ended the game strongly and looked the more likely to add to their lead there was to be no further scoring. This game will not live long in the memory of the travelling away support however they, along with players and coaching staff will be delighted to have taken four more points back to Donaldson Park.
Scoops Man of the Match
Chris Good put in a typically industrious performance against Limavady and really rallied the troops during the second half.
Donaghadee team vs. Limavady
Billy Allen, Ricardo Santos, Ian Martindale, Nigel Barker, Chris McGivern, Alastair Lockhart, Paul Hamilton (Ryan Willis), Gareth Gordon, Chris Good, Kalave Aualiitia, David Thompson, Richard Martindale, Kenny McCombe (Keith McIlwaine), Richard Miller.
Millar McCall Wylie Junior Cup.
There are a host of 1st XV fixtures scheduled for the period leading up to Christmas – all starting with the a home semi-final this Saturday against Portadown in the Junior Cup.
Donaghadee have only been beaten once in all competitions this season and will be looking to continue this excellent form as they welcome Portadown back to Donadson Park. The last meeting of the two teams was on the opening day of the season when Donaghdee ran out clear winners. However at semi-final stage of this prestigious competition, this victory will be confined to the history books and the men in red and green will have to dig deep if they are to reach the Junior Cup final for the first time in 18 years.
Please don’t miss the opportunity to lend your support to what promises to be a special atmosphere at Donaldson Park this Saturday.
A hot meal dinner will be available from 1pm on Saturday with seating and tables being made available throughout the club house. Meal tickets are only £10 per head and available from the bar on the day.