TWO tries from powerful flanker Robert Duffy broke the hearts of CBC Monkstown at Donnybrook.
ST MICHAEL'S COLLEGE 13
CBC MONKSTOWN 7
While St Michael's were edging the territorial battle, Monkstown were no lambs to the slaughter. They had enough individuals in fly-half Darragh Spillane and centres Patrick Rogers and Dan Casey to cause trouble, their lightning left wing Cillian Barry speeding down the left.
All the while, St Michael's were dangerous on the ball, only thwarted by the excellence of CBC's ground work where number eight William Fay, openside Thomas O'Callaghan and Casey stemmed the tide by turning over ball.
It took a supreme piece of pace, skill and evasion for Casey to split the midfield, chip over the last line and gather on the bounce for momentum to take him to the line. He converted for a 7-0 lead as the half-time whistle sounded. Unsurprisingly, St Michael's redoubled their efforts, Barry just about claiming scrum-half Peter O'Beirne's delicate lob for a mark.
There were points for number eight Barry Fitzpatrick from straight in front of the sticks when CBC were too slow to roll away at a ruck in the 35th minute.
The pressure was building. Prop Sam Griffen peeled around to the back of a lineout, the ball was shifted for centre James Hickey to have a go and Duffy was around in support to carry it over for an 8-7 edge at the end of the third quarter.
Soon, Casey went close from a 40-metre penalty and had another crack from wide on the left but it was left to Duffy to power over tacklers for his second try two minutes into injury-time.
SCORERS – St Michael's College: R Duffy 2 tries; B Fitzpatrick pen. CBC Monkstown: D Casey try, con.
St Michael's College: M Heaney; H McIntyre, J Kelly (capt), J Hickey, C Carey; H Byrne, P O'Beirne; R Kelleher, T Glynn, S Griffen, J Kennedy, M O'Donahoe, R Duffy, O Dowling, B Fitzpatrick. Replacements: R Frankling for McIntyre 35 mins; A Connolly for O'Donahoe 58 mins.
CBC Monkstown: T Kelly; D Porter, D Casey (capt), P Rodgers, C Barry; D Spillane, R Jordan; J Stafford, A Holmes, E Clarke, R Doyle, A Byrne, C Madden, T O'Callaghan, W Fay. Replacements: J Blennerhasset for Spillane 31 mins; P Jennings for Madden 42 mins; K Shaw for Porter 67 mins.
Referee: K Henley-Willis (Leinster Branch)