Saturday 16 December 2017

Dundalk get ball rolling as rain wreaks Cup havoc

THE heavy rain that fell all day Sunday played havoc with the opening round of the Provincial Towns Cup as half a dozen ties fell foul off the weather.

Home comforts were the order of the weekend in the seven games that survived with Wicklow's comeback victory in New Ross being the only away success.

Three matches have been refixed for tomorrow on a day that already includes Tullamore's attempt to regain the All-Ireland Junior Cup when they welcome Westport to Spollenstown for a semi-final.

Newbridge got the ball rolling in the Towns Cup on Saturday when they ran in nine tries in a 57-13 win at home against Rathdrum, demonstrating the gulf in class between Division 1A and Division 3 of the Leinster League.

Holders Dundalk got their defence off to a solid start on Sunday when they disposed of solid resistance from visitors North Kildare on Sunday, eventually prevailing 24-8.

Kilkenny built a 13-3 half-time lead at home to Portlaoise and defended it after the break as there was no further scoring. Tullow scored two tries in the final quarter that broke the stubborn spirit of Clane as the hosts got through to the second round, winning 22-6.

Ashbourne always had the edge on Boyne's 2nd XV in a local derby at Milltown House and netted four tries in their 27-3 victory.

Finally, Navan's 2nd XV raced into an early 12-point lead at home to Arklow but were mightily relieved to hear the final whistle in a 18-11 win.

Tomorrow Cill Dara host Portarlington in an eagerly awaited rearranged 1st round tie as two of the Leinster League's divisional leaders go head to head in Beechpark, Athy travel to Edenderry while in-form Gorey will welcome Clondalkin to Clonattin.

Towns Cup second round draw: Roscrea or Co Carlow v Edenderry or Athy; Skerries v Dundalk; Longford or Mullingar v Cill Dara or Portarlington; Ashbourne v Tullamore; Naas or Wexford Wanderers v Newbridge; Gorey or Clondalkin v Kilkenny; Wicklow v Tullow; Navan v Enniscorthy - Games to be played on Sunday February 19.

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