St Mary’s women bring home AIL Plate

By Stephen Leonard

AN 18-0 victory over Thurles saw St Mary’s Women complete their march to All-Ireland Plate in Old Belvedere on Saturday.

The girls-in-blue under-scored their intent right from kick off and, for the opening 20 minutes, were camped in the opposition 22.

St Marys Ladies April 7 2016 

Yet despite a few line breaks, they were unable to chalk up a score in this period thanks to strong Thurles defence that man-aged to repel the Marys women multiple times.

Thurles created turnovers on their own try line which were kicked into touch but Orla Fitzsimmons and Aoife Moore in the Marys lineout regain possession for St Marys.

Winger Shayne Richardson finally crossed the whitewash for Marys after 20 minutes before Thurles were reduced to 14 women after a yellow card for repeated infringements two minutes later.

Mary’s duly capitalised and, shortly after, out-half Saidhbhe O’Riordan increased the margin to 8-0 from a scrum penalty.

The second half got under way with Marys retaining much of the possession while producing some the strong defence themselves when called upon.

The wet conditions led to handling errors, leading to a busy day for the forwards with plenty of scrums.

These were at Under 19 rules which the players are not accustomed to but they remained solid.

With the aid of some blitzing runs from Carol Staunton and Heather Carey, Mary’s recorded two more tries for Grainne Egan and Niamh Connolly.

Superbly led by joint captains Emma Kiernan and Egan, this St Mary’s outfit has now scooped two trophies this season.

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