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Saturday 21 September 2019

Wexford's unbeaten run stands af four

Rugby: Leinster League at Park Lane

Wexford Wanderers' first team hosted third placed Athy at Park Lane last Sunday in an important fixture at the club.

Wexford Wanderers 12 Athy RFC 6

Going into the contest with three important wins on the road Wanderers knew a result would cement at least second place in the league and keep the pressure on local rivals New Ross for the coveted title.

The last time Wanderers faced Athy they almost managed a comeback of epic proportions losing by 22-19 despite Athy having a 17-0 lead at the interval.

The game started with the sides very evenly matched in the early exchanges with both teams trading penalties and just on the stroke of half time Athy scored a second penalty to lead 3-6 at the interval.

In the second half Wanderers defensive discipline started to show through with a penalty on the 50th minute tying the score line again.

Wanderers' backs were at this stage making some excellent running and wingers Robbie Casey and Liam Barry were instrumental in breaking the Athy lines again and again with full-back Gannon effectively linking in on any wayward Athy clearances to keep the momentum in the game.

Athy's discipline let them down yet again allowing one of the new stars of the team Eoin Roche to extend his tally from the boot.

As the game entered the final agonising quarter the momentum swung between both sides with possession being alternated with neither side managing to get a significant platform of momentum, although Wanderers did spend long periods in the Athy 22 with multiple set pieces.

In the end Athy indiscipline resulted in one of their players receiving a second yellow card and being dismissed.

From the resultant penalty Roche doubled the lead to 12-6 which was the final action of an intense and brutal encounter where players stood up and were counted.

In the front row Sean Redmond put in a mighty shift before being joined by his debutant brother Kevin.

As ever James Byrne and impacted from the bench along with the reliable Nick Jones.

In the backs another debutant Tommy Hudson accounted well for himself in a difficult game.

Next up for Wanderers is the trip to Athboy on January 8 in what will be a packed month of games with the final match being the visit from Naas for the opening round of the Provincial Towns Cup.

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Team: Sean Redmond, Kevin Birney, Gavin Doyle, Chris Walsh, John Turner, Cartaigh Geogeghan, Tom Brennan, Aidan Stewart (captain), Kevin Roche, Eoin Roche, Robbie Casey, Colm O'Corcoran, Shea Boggan, Liam Barry, Paul Gannon. Subs: James Byrne, Kevin Redmond, Nick Jones, Tommy Hudson, Calum Murphy.

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