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Monday 11 December 2017

Ros' can't get over 'bridge

4 March 2015; Dan Trayers, Cistercian College Roscrea, is tackled by Tom O'Neill, right, and Tobert Buckley, Newbridge College. Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Senior Cup Semi-Final, Cistercian College Roscrea v Newbridge College, Donnybrook Stadium, Donnybrook, Dublin. Picture credit: Cody Glenn / SPORTSFILE
4 March 2015; Dan Trayers, Cistercian College Roscrea, is tackled by Tom O'Neill, right, and Tobert Buckley, Newbridge College. Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Senior Cup Semi-Final, Cistercian College Roscrea v Newbridge College, Donnybrook Stadium, Donnybrook, Dublin. Picture credit: Cody Glenn / SPORTSFILE
4 March 2015; Joe Murphy, Cistercian College Roscrea, is tackled by Ruair? Cleary, Newbridge College. Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Senior Cup Semi-Final, Cistercian College Roscrea v Newbridge College, Donnybrook Stadium, Donnybrook, Dublin. Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE
4 March 2015; Joe Murphy, Cistercian College Roscrea, is pushed into touch by Ruair? Cleary, Newbridge College, resulting in a disallowed try late in the second half. Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Senior Cup Semi-Final, Cistercian College Roscrea v Newbridge College, Donnybrook Stadium, Donnybrook, Dublin. Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE
4 March 2015; Joe Murphy, Cistercian College Roscrea, is pushed into touch by Ruair? Cleary, Newbridge College, resulting in a disallowed try late in the second half. Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Senior Cup Semi-Final, Cistercian College Roscrea v Newbridge College, Donnybrook Stadium, Donnybrook, Dublin. Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE
4 March 2015; Robert Buckley, Newbridge College, is tackled by Alan Tynan, left, and Dan Trayers, Cistercian College Roscrea. Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Senior Cup Semi-Final, Cistercian College Roscrea v Newbridge College, Donnybrook Stadium, Donnybrook, Dublin. Picture credit: Cody Glenn / SPORTSFILE
4 March 2015; Mark Delaney, Newbridge College, in action against Jake Howlett, Cistercian College Roscrea. Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Senior Cup Semi-Final, Cistercian College Roscrea v Newbridge College, Donnybrook Stadium, Donnybrook, Dublin. Picture credit: Cody Glenn / SPORTSFILE
4 March 2015; Colm Doyle, Newbridge College, kicks as Eoghan Maher, Cistercian College Roscrea, dives to block. Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Senior Cup Semi-Final, Cistercian College Roscrea v Newbridge College, Donnybrook Stadium, Donnybrook, Dublin. Picture credit: Cody Glenn / SPORTSFILE
4 March 2015; Keith Kavanagh, Cistercian College Roscrea, looks to the referee for reassurance after going over for his side's first try. Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Senior Cup Semi-Final, Cistercian College Roscrea v Newbridge College, Donnybrook Stadium, Donnybrook, Dublin. Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE
4 March 2015; Jimmy O'Brien, Newbridge College, is tackled by Rob Wharton, Cistercian College Roscrea. Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Senior Cup Semi-Final, Cistercian College Roscrea v Newbridge College, Donnybrook Stadium, Donnybrook, Dublin. Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE
4 March 2015; Jimmy O'Brien, Newbridge College, is tackled by Rob Wharton, Cistercian College Roscrea. Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Senior Cup Semi-Final, Cistercian College Roscrea v Newbridge College, Donnybrook Stadium, Donnybrook, Dublin. Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE
4 March 2015; Jimmy O'Brien, Newbridge College, is tackled by Alan Tynan, Cistercian College Roscrea. Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Senior Cup Semi-Final, Cistercian College Roscrea v Newbridge College, Donnybrook Stadium, Donnybrook, Dublin. Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE
4 March 2015; Jimmy O'Brien, Newbridge College, is tackled by Alan Tynan, Cistercian College Roscrea. Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Senior Cup Semi-Final, Cistercian College Roscrea v Newbridge College, Donnybrook Stadium, Donnybrook, Dublin. Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE
4 March 2015; Jimmy O'Brien, Newbridge College, is tackled by Alan Tynan, Cistercian College Roscrea. Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Senior Cup Semi-Final, Cistercian College Roscrea v Newbridge College, Donnybrook Stadium, Donnybrook, Dublin. Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE
4 March 2015; Rob Wharton, Cistercian College Roscrea. Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Senior Cup Semi-Final, Cistercian College Roscrea v Newbridge College, Donnybrook Stadium, Donnybrook, Dublin. Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE
4 March 2015; Cistercian College Roscrea supporters. Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Senior Cup Semi-Final, Cistercian College Roscrea v Newbridge College, Donnybrook Stadium, Donnybrook, Dublin. Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE
4 March 2015; Newbridge College captain Jimmy O'Brien speaks to his players ahead of the game. Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Senior Cup Semi-Final, Cistercian College Roscrea v Newbridge College, Donnybrook Stadium, Donnybrook, Dublin. Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE

Just when you thought the drama couldn't get any higher.

This was forecast to be as close as the first semi-final the day before. It ended one point tighter with a replay set for early next week as two contrasting schools fought out a real test of intensity.

There was always the danger Roscrea would not be able to get back up to the level of performance that thwarted Blackrock in the quarter-final.

It didn't start out that way as they brought their power game into effect, passing up more than one shot at goal for the benefit of the maul.

Newbridge knew it was coming and they were steadfast in their defence, getting confidence from it and countering stylishly through the impressive Jimmy O'Brien for Jake Howlett to compete a tremendous try from deep inside their own 22.

Roscrea were so intent on imposing their physical presence, they forgot to mind the back door as Howlett wheeled around close to the posts for the conversion. Scrum-half Colm Doyle pulled it left and wide.

The 'Bridge were living off scraps as their pack stood up to the punishment and O'Brien led a dangerous three-quarter line keen to strike from distance.

Roscrea4.jpg
4 March 2015; Joe Murphy, Cistercian College Roscrea, is pushed into touch by Ruair? Cleary, Newbridge College, resulting in a disallowed try late in the second half. Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Senior Cup Semi-Final, Cistercian College Roscrea v Newbridge College, Donnybrook Stadium, Donnybrook, Dublin. Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE

When Roscrea's number eight Dan Trayers did not release when tackled, Doyle wasn't as charitable from 30 metres to make it 8-0 at the break.

There was a sense that Newbridge had to have their period of dominance to escape the vice-like grip applied by the Roscrea eight.

The give-and-take meant the next score would be absolutely crucial. It came from a Roscrea maul as Newbridge took it down illegally and the ensuing barrage of pick-and-jams yielded a shot to goal which captain Tim Foley kicked through in the 45th minute.

The force was with Ros'. A lineout was taken in by lock Fineen Wychereley. The rumble came. So too the drives.

Prop Liam Walsh almost made it. Scrum-half Keith Kavanagh did to tie it up in the 53rd minute.

Newbridge were tiring rapidly against their bigger opponents.

They still manufactured a late spectacular counter for wing Colm Stapleton to be stopped short.

Cistercian Roscrea 8 Newbridge College 8

Roscrea: T Carroll; D Keane, R Wharton, T Foley (capt), S Kilgallen; A Tynan, K Kavanagh; L Walsh, E Maher, D Murphy, F Wycherley, A Browne, S Meagher, M Keane, D Trayers. Replacements: B Diffley for Meagher 46 mins; J Murphy for Kilgallen 47 mins; P Gavin for Browne 58 mins; P O'Shea for Wharton 69 mins.

Newbridge: M Delaney; R Cleary, J Howlett, J O'Brien (capt), C Stapleton; T Murphy, C Doyle; J Duggan, C Johnson, D Breen, M Joyce, B Larkin, T O'Neill, R Buckley, P Ryan. Replacements: A Mahony for Joyce, D Walker for Ryan, R Culliton for Buckley all 63 mins.

Referee: G Conway, Leinster Branch.

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