Apr 222009
 

Well how’s about that for a first season in Division two? We managed to lead it for quite a while and even with the depletion of the squad due to injury towards the end of the season we still held out until the very last game with a chance of making it to the playoffs. A few results went against us, it could be said that missed penalties cost us valuable league points along the way but in general it must be said that it was a fabulous first season at this level for Bruff.

Saturdays game failed to live up to the expectations that we have had of this great squad all year. Greystones fought like tigers to defend their line for vast periods of this game and great credit is due to them for their defensive performance. Time after time the Bruff attack was basically camped between their twenty-two and the try-line but they just could not seem to get across the whitewash. Down by seven points after just as many minutes courtesy of a try by Greystones winger Dan Kenny duly converted by out-half James Power the remainder of the game seemed to be Bruff’s as but to be honest you felt from word go that this was just not going to be their day. Bruff’s only score coming courtesy of a Brian Cahill penalty directly in front of the posts giving a half time score of seven points to three. Errors at the breakdown pinged incessantly by the referee disrupted the Bruff attack at critical moments during the match and even though they rallied to attack the red zone again and again and again another breakdown error would give the beleaguered Greystones defence relief from the onslaught and an onslaught is about the only description for it. The second half was reminiscent of the Munster/All blacks game with Greystones bodies littering the pitch from one side to the other every couple of minutes, at one stage there was five Greystones players on the turf, but to their credit they held out and just basically seemed to want the game more than the finally tired looking Bruff squad. A penalty by Power with three minutes or so left on the clock put a gloss on the score for ‘Stones and the game finished out ten points to three. With Old Crescent winning their final game away to Malone a win wouldn’t have mattered in any case although it does mean that Bruff slip to sixth in the table. Playoffs take place next weekend and not being involved has one minor plus if it could be called that, this fabulous group of players can finally take their first decent break in almost three years of non-stop work to get them to where they are.

On behalf of the club, I wish to thank this brilliant group of lads for a fabulous season and for the great work that they have put in over the last twelve months. Great credit is due to Eoin, Peter, Michéal ,Cathal, John and all of the lads involved in the team from first to last. Have a good night on Thursday night and take your well deserved break.

Apr 132009
 

The first XV managed to keep their playoff hopes very much alive with this win over Clon as Old Crescent lost their game at home to Highfield over the weekend. The return of Eugene Murnane to Bruff for the first time in the AIL would add a little edge as they needed some points to be 100% guaranteed safe for the season.

Clon were fist on the board after the 9th. minute courtesy of break by centre Dave Lombard who passed to his Winger O’ Sullivan to run in from 20 meters. Garry Cribb adding the extras. 7 minutes later Bruff full back Paul O’Brien replied after a sweet chip over the Clonakilty defence, collecting an even sweeter bounce to get in under the posts. Brian Cahill added the points and then put Bruff ahead for the first time on the 28th. minute with a penalty. 10-7. Just on half time Clonakilty scored another try courtesy of a Derek Dillon break, skipping past a couple of tackles before releasing flanker Len Harte to score beside the posts. Dave Lombard added the points to give the visitors a 14-10 half time lead.
The second half began ominously with Clonakilty scoring first, with a second Lombard kick going in off the post after just four minutes. 17-10. Now trailing by seven points, the home side sensed that any hopes of reaching the play offs were rapidly fading and upped the tempo noticeably. A back movement saw outhalf Brian Cahill make very good progress and he released Andrew Cashman with some work to do but managing to round some despairing Clonakilty defenders to score his first League try for the club. Cahill’s conversion attempt clipped the post but went wide. 17-15.
Dave Lombard added his second penalty on the 63rd. minute to push his side back into a five point lead and leaving the home side with a lot of work to do in the final quarter. 20-15. Bruff were now forced to chase the game but they upped another gear and were rewarded ten minutes later when after going through a large number of phases, Cathal O’ Regan eventually got in near the corner for his side’s third try, fulfilling his Captains duties. Brian Cahill missed a difficult conversion but two minutes later put over what turned out to be the winning penalty.

Both sides can consider the day as a good day out, Bruff keeping their playoff hopes alive, everything going down to the last day as usual and clonakilty coupled with other results ont he day are well safe for the season after their losing bonus point.

BRUFF; Paul O’Brien, Finbarr Hogan, Andrew Cashman, John Malone, John Moore, Brian Cahill, Eoghan Maher, David Horan, Cathal O’Regan (Capt.), Stephen Foster, Maurice O’Connell, Alfie Laffan, Paddy Cleary, Ger. Luby and Peter Malone.
Replacements: Mossie O’Donnell for Luby (13), Dermot Murnane for Cleary (HT), John Carroll for Hogan (61) Gearoid Ryan for Horan (66) and David Horan for Foster (80).Garry Leonard.