Naas U13s: 29 – Clondalkin U13s: 29
Clondalkin U13s secured a hard-earned draw on the road under Friday night lights in Naas in a tight contest between two evenly-matched sides.
There were debuts for several new members of the ever-growing Clondalkin family and lots of positional changes in an experimental side that started brilliantly, with a dominant pack leading the way in the early minutes. The front five made the hard yards in the opening period with Mohamed Belabas, Mikey Branigan and Tommy Xin Wikie all making huge contributions at the breakdown, resulting in several turnovers for the away team. They were joined by excellent debutants Lennon Gilligan and Cian Mannion who were both straight into the action. This set the platform for a well-balanced back row of Josh Apps (already a natural in only his second game), Garreth Brady and Sumsoar Khan to do some serious damage up the middle and it was hat-trick hero Brady and No. 8 Khan who touched down for a total of four first-half tries. On a difficult night for kickers in a swirling wind, No. 10 Cillian Lowth slotted two marvellous conversions to leave Clon 24-15 up at half time.
The lads in yellow started the second half as they finished the first, and both the starting and replacement scrumhalves of Oisín O’Neill and Jack O’Sullivan kept the ball moving at speed for Thomas Carter, Dylan Freeman and Naglis Lisauskas, as well as captain fantastic, Luke Murray, to go on darting runs in a backline with bags of pace. It was the storming centre, Jake Lee who secured Clon’s fifth try with a brilliant solo run from deep to stretch the lead. There were also fine contributions from quick-thinking Danny Steed, new man Dylan Clancy, rucking machine Rían Gannon and the all-tackling Cillian Walsh Phillips. And although Naas came back with two converted tries of their own to snatch a draw, overall it had been a disciplined and fluid performance from the Clondalkin lads who are really building something special at CRFC.
Clondalkin team: Mohamed Belabas, Mikey Branigan, Cian Mannion, Lennon Gilligan, Tommy Xin Wilkie, Rían Gannon, Josh Apps, Garreth Brady, Cillian Walsh Phillips, Sumsoar Khan, Oisín O’Neill, Jack O’Sullivan, Cillian Lowth, Daniel Steed, Thomas Carter, Jake Lee, Dylan Clancy, Dylan Freeman, Luke Murray, Naglis Lisauskas