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Wing wizards conjure up CUS scalp for Saints

ST ANDREW'S COLLEGE 11, CUS 0 - The accurate boot of right wing Luke de Renzy and the finishing prowess of left-sided counterpart Stephen Keenan enabled St Andrew's to dismiss CUS in the Leinster Schools Vinnie Murray Senior Cup first round at Merrion Road last Thursday.

CUS wanted to move the ball through their hands right from the start, falling into the trap set by the St Andrew's defence when a support player went off his feet at a ruck.

It was a long way out, but this didn't seem to bother right wing De Renzy. He took his time, took aim and fired the penalty over from 40 metres in the second minute.

This was a warning. De Renzy was not a kicker to be trifled with. Indiscipline would be punished. A jumper was taken out in the air at the restart to put St Andrew's straight back on the front foot.

The over-eagerness of both sides to get stuck in and the unfavourable, muddy conditions were the cause of many early penalties.

CUS full-back Conor O'Brien did well to tame a sliding grubber only to nudge the ball forward on the floor. A scrum was awarded to St Andrew's.



Ruthless

When the pressure came on, CUS could not deal with it. A penalty was forthcoming. De Renzy was ruthless from the right to make it 6-0 in the 10th minute.

This was a fair lead given the difficulty of the day. CUS looked to their scrum-half James McCusker to kick for position and the dynamism of number eight Luke Trench off the back of the scrum.

Their problems started once the ball was shifted beyond fly-half Matthew Butler. Centres Barry Moore and James O'Kane carried hard without the gain of yards to encourage them.

St Andrew's returned from the break with a precious six-point lead and went about their work in business-like fashion. The ball was elusive in the wet. Low kicks and grubbers were employed to make life difficult for the receivers.

Centre Gary Fearon made one of the few clean breaks in the game in the 43rd minute and he managed to get the ball away to Gavin Beere out of the tackle.

This oiled an attack that would have otherwise broken down like so many that had gone before it. The ball was kept alive.

The winners constructed a smooth raid down the left, centre Beere and full-back Lee Boorman fixing defenders for Keenan to use his frame and speed on the outside for a superb try.

St Andrew's: L Boorman; L de Renzy, G Fearon, G Beere, S Keenan; D Joyce, D Hide; A Porter, A Brady, D Higgins, M Robinson, J Guy, L Kavanagh, B Ingram, G Jones (capt). Replacements: J Balbirnie for Joyce, R Brady for Higgins both 61 mins; A Guy for Kavanagh 64 mins; J Cassidy for Jones, R Bradley for A Brady both 67 mins.

CUS: C O'Brien; M Lacken, J O'Kane, B Moore, G Power; M Butler, J McCusker; D Choi, R Macari, D Khan, J Gavin, C Fahy, E Kelly, D Feenan (capt), L Trench. Replacements: C O'Curry for Butler, B Darcy for Fahy both 43 mins; E McGovern for Lacken 49 mins; S O'Hara for Kelly, D O'Neill for Choi both 61 mins; F McWilliams for Macari, E Guiry for O'Kane both 62 mins; S Tarpey for Power 66 mins.

Referee: B Armstrong, Leinster Branch.