CASTLEBAR 51 BUCCANEERS SECONDS 17 | News | Buccaneers Rugby Football Club Athlone

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published:Jan  17   2018

BUCCANEERS SECONDS made a tame exit from the Connacht Junior Cup when going down 51-17 to Castlebar at wet and windy Cloondeash on Sunday. Buccs made seven changes from their most recent outing which was over a month ago and, consequently, their play was disjointed and disorganised. The hosts, meanwhile, had a sturdy pack that they made good use of as well as utilising their rolling substitutions to telling effect.


Castlebar were also helped by having the elements in their favour when this Cup tie kicked off and they promptly opened the scoring with a very early Ronan Conway penalty. Their pack was rampant in the opening quarter as the Blues notched three unconverted tries through Nigel Byrne, David Staunton and Fintan Casey in quick succession for a 18-0 lead by the end of the first quarter. The impressive No.8 Staunton dotted down his second at the posts with Conway adding the conversion to stretch their advantage.


Buccs finally made some inroads into the home half and, after Thomas McGann and Brian Diffley made good ground on the left, Callum Forde displayed nifty footwork and desire to get in for Buccs opening score. Atlhough this try was not converted against the breeze, it gave the Pirates some hope that they could chase the game when they had the elements to assist them in the second half. However, they leaked two further soft tries to Luke Staunton and Byrne before halftime. Conway converted both to give Castlebar a daunting 39-5 toehold at the interval.


Buccs were more committed on the resumption but could not pierce the home defence until Robert Enraght-Moony burst through for an unconverted try wide on the left after a quickly tapped 57th minute penalty. The Athlone side was now applying all the pressure and a home player was sin binned for a deliberate knock on. Buccs scored a third try through Brian Diffley with Ryan Convey adding the conversion to reduce the visitors’ arrears to 17-39 with fifteen minutes remaining.


However, that was as close as it got as Castlebar quickly retorted with a try and Brian Flannery scored his side’s eight try in the final move with Conway’s conversion completing the homesters’ 51-17 winning margin. Castlebar were physically stronger and better organised. Nevertheless, this was a disappointing display in keeping with the miserable weather conditions by Buccaneers, even allowing for a callow squad, with their tackling being especially porous for most of this contest. Forde and Thomas McGann looked threatening when in possession but the Pirates pack were unable to deliver the necessary supply of decent possession. How Buccs could have done with the assistance of the spectating Adam Kennedy!


CASTLEBAR:- R.Conway; F.Casey, L.Staunton, N.Byrne, J.Rowland; P.Cody (captain), D.Togher; S.Bulger, I.McDonagh, B.Flannery; R.Hughes, D.Mulgrew; P.Flannelly, M.Moran and D.Staunton.


BUCCANEERS:- C.Seery; T.McGann, A.Hayman, S.Flynn (captain), C.Forde; D.McMahon, G.Fallon; N.Farrelly, D.Buckley, B.Diffley; A.Shine-Lynch, D.Touhey; K.Grehan, R.Enraght-Moony and R.O’Meara. Replacements:- B.Collins (for Shine-Lynch),T.Thompson (for Grehan) and R.Convey (for Hayman).


Referee:- Mark Fitzgerald (Connacht).




BUCCANEERS U-20’s take on leaders Maynooth University/Barnhall when the J P Fanagan Leinster League Premier 2 resumes after the festive break on Sunday. This will be the ultimate test for the Pirates who have struggled to recapture the form of last season that left them runners-up to Sunday’s visitors. If the midlanders can call on all their resources, a ding dong battle could unfold with the game kicking off at 2.30 p.m. at Dubarry Park.


BUCCANEERS SECONDS are on the road west on Saturday for a joust with their Galwegians counterparts in the Connacht Junior 1A League at Crowley Park, Glenina. Both clubs will be smarting from prompt elimination from the Connacht Junior Cup last weekend but the light blues gave a better account of themselves when going down to Sligo. To be fair to Buccs, theirs was a patchwork squad at Castlebar but greater numbers are required on the training paddock if they are to consolidate in this division. Presently they lie in fifth position, just one above Wegians, so bragging rights are on offer come Saturday when, hopefully the midlanders will be able to field a stronger panel. Please note that this match has an early kick off time of 1 p.m.


BUCCANEERS WOMEN travel to Carrick-On-Shannon for a Connacht Womens League fixture against the Co. Leitrim ladies on Sunday. This encounter is scheduled to kick off at 1 p.m.




BUCCANEERS NETWORKING LUNCH, which takes place in the Athlone Sheraton Hotel on Friday, February 2nd from 1 p.m. is now fully booked out. A waiting list is in operation for this event which features guest speakers of the calibre of Pat McDonagh (Supermacs CEO), Gary McGann (Chairman Aryzta and Paddy Power Betfair) and Kingsley Aikens (CEO Diaspora Matters). To confirm bookings or check availability, please contact Buccaneers Administrator Geraldine at 0861732711. 




International rugby returns to Athlone next month when IRELAND CLUBS players take on their SCOTLAND counterparts under the Dubarry Park floodlights on Friday, February 23rd. Tickets will shortly be on sale for this attractive match in which the top players from the All-Ireland League pit their wits against their Scottish counterparts.




This has been a dark couple of weeks with many bereavements suffered by members and their families. Heartfelt condolences are extended to club Chairman Diarmuid Morrissey and family on the death of his mother Grainne; to Patrick Cooney and family on the passing of his brother John; to Paddy and Tony Murphy on the untimely death of their mother Catherine (mother-in-law of Yvonne O’Shea); to Tom Shine on the death of his wife Mary; to Sean Kearney on the loss of his wife Anne (mother-in-law of Paddy Kenny); and to the family of John Morgan who died in Galway. May they all rest in eternal peace.