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Thursday 22 August 2019

Gorey earn tilt at Cill Dara in promotion play-off

Rugby

Gorey have it all to do again as they finished runners-up and qualified for the play-off for Leinster Division 1A. The match will be played on Sunday in Carlow at 3 p.m. against Cill Dara.

Gorey 29 Carlow 6

Last Sunday saw them reach that goal when they travelled to Carlow for their last league game of the season.

Gorey knew that a win would keep them in second place and in with a chance to reach their goal of playing Division 1A rugby for the first time in the club's history.

Since the start of the year, and after their outstanding South-East league victory over their neighbours Enniscorthy, Gorey have struggled with form.

A number of injuries to key personnel, and some bad luck, saw them slip from league leaders to third place and back up to second after a crucial win over second-placed Malahide.

Carlow had their own goals, and were going to prove a hard nut to crack, as a win would see them secure a play-off place to remain in Division 1B.

The game kicked off with Gorey playing with the strong breeze at their backs, and the visitors were first out of the blocks and could have scored in the first passage of play, but spurned the chance.

The next phase saw Carlow attacking but a turnover and a quick-thinking J.P. Redmond saw John Condren race on to gather and go in under the posts for the opening try for Shane Luby to convert.

Carlow came more into it after that and reduced the arrears with a Richard White penalty.

The next attacking play saw J.P. Redmond step through at least three would-be tacklers for a fine individual try which Shane Luby converted to take the score to 14-3.

Gorey kept up the pressure and Brendon Spears rounded off a good move to take the score to 19-3. That was the way it stayed until half-time.

Gorey were again quick out of the blocks but Carlow defended well. In the 20th minute J.P. Redmond rounded off another fine move to take the score to 24-3. Carlow reduced the lead with another Richard White penalty, but Gorey sealed the result when Brendon Spears split the defence to score a cracking try to round off the score at 29-6.

A good Carlow defence and a sometimes wasteful Gorey kept the score down.

Best for Gorey were John Condren, Matt Bater and Brendon Spears in the backs, with J.P. Redmond, Adrian Copeland and man of the match Michael Woods the pick of a lively pack.

Gorey will need all hands to the wheel on Sunday, as Cill Dara are a very strong outfit, and the 16th man may prove vital in this all-important game.

Kick-off time is 3 p.m. so please make every effort to attend.

Team: C. Allen, B. O'Connor, R. Deering, A. Copeland, J.P. Redmond, K. Breen, M. Woods, J. Ahearne, G. Dunne, G. Bater, S. Luby, A. Walsh, M. Bater, B. Spears, J. Condren, P.J. Clince, J. Mulligan, S. Byrne, A. O'Brien, B. Horan , E. Horan.

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