Friday 20 July 2018

All Blacks young guns in last 16

The triumphant All Blacks squad in Clare
The triumphant All Blacks squad in Clare

All Blacks made the 580 kilometre round trip to Kilrush in County Clare on Saturday to take on Moneypoint in the last 32 of the Skechers S.F.A.I. Under-13 Cup, with the task of facing a home side boasting a two-year, 30-game, unbeaten run.

All Blacks 2 Moneypoint F.C. 1

The All Blacks knew they were going to be in for a tough afternoon and things didn't get any easier when after only three minutes the home side took the lead after a great strike from 15 yards out.

But straight from the re-start the Blacks took the game to their bigger, more physical, opponents. On nine minutes they equalised. After some great work by Kyle Rankin and Ben Rossiter, Tadhg McDonald fired the visitors level.

The remainder of the first-half was a hard-fought affair but the All Blacks, through great work from Cathal Parker, Rankin, Evan Cullen and Luc Farrell, grew into the game.

The second-half was a one-sided affair as the Blacks laid siege to the Moneypoint goal. Nine minutes in Rankin had the ball in the net after some great play, but to the amazement of everyone in attendance the referee disallowed it for an apparent offside.

Minutes later the hard-working and very impressive Ben Rossiter saw his shot beat the 'keeper but come back off the post.

With the game looking like it was heading to extra-time with just three minutes left, the visitors were awarded a free on the edge of the box and up stepped Rankin to fire the ball to the roof of the net to send the All Blacks through to the last 16 of the S.F.A.I. Cup.

From 1-16 the squad stood tall and put in a great effort. The All Blacks now look forward to another away fixture in the last 16 against either Athenry of Galway or St. Mary's A.F.C. from Cork.

Squad: Lee Kelly, Evan Cullen, Luc Farrell, Daniel Devereux, Quinlan Kelly, Cathal Parker, Kyle Rankin, Tadhg Hayes, Tadgh McDonald, Ben Rossiter, Tadgh Deegan, Alan Dwyer, Jake Cleary, Ryan Goldsmith, Conor Swan, James Wright.

Wexford People