herald

Sunday 22 October 2017

Belvo put on five-star show to dethrone champions

Belvedere moved into second on the Leinster Senior Cup honours list with their eleventh title at the sunny RDS yesterday.

They dethroned holders Cistercian Roscrea with an awesome display of fast-paced, clinical rugby that produced five tries, four of them from a classy back division.

They struck early when full-back Hugh O'Sullivan pounced at the posts for centre Conor Jennings to convert.

This was met with a swift response by Roscrea as their big forwards looked to take it up the guts.

Their problem all afternoon was that they had to churn out the hard yards from multiple phases against a superb defence in which Tom de Jongh and Max Kearney led the line of great resistance.

This contrasted with a quick-striking Belvedere that only needed a slight opening to eat up the ground with their greater speed of movement.

The intelligence of Kearney to reach out to the butt of the posts was rewarded with a second try, also converted by Jennings.

It was fast-becoming a mountain to climb for Roscrea against a Belvedere side not for turning away.

Roscrea had to react in the second-half. Instead, James McKeown showed strength on the ball to beat away two tackles for a 19-0 lead in the 37th minute.

Then, their left wing Peter Maher was equally determined in taking two tacklers onto the left corner for an unassailable lead in the 46th minute.

The best was saved for second-from-last as the immaculate O'Sullivan simply shot into space on the left to put McKeown away for his second try.

It was not quite the rout it appeared.

Roscrea did take consolation from finally breaching Belvedere when Jack Culligan got the ball down, after crossing twice earlier in the game.

They just came up against a superior force in top form.

leinster schools senior cup: Belvedere 31 roscrea 7

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