Belvedere College - Seniors - SCT

Seniors - SCT

Seniors - SCT

SCT Rugby Campaign

Black and white! Belvedere deliver back-to-back Senior Cup titles after edging Blackrock

IT TOOK A while to get going, but when it did, this Leinster Senior Schools Cup final delivered everything we were expecting as Belvedere College, the defending champions, claimed back-to-back titles in the most dramatic of circumstances.

Source: Colm O'Neill/INPHO

It was a brutally physical encounter from start to finish at the RDS with little to separate the two sides but, in the end, Peter Maher’s first half score was the difference as Belvo secured a 12th title.

Phil Werahiko’s side did all the damage in the opening period and they showed incredible resolve thereafter to hold firm and close the door on Blackrock’s late rally.

The 68-time winners never really got going, and it was a great shame they were unable to produce the type of performance which had seen them power into the final, as conditions made it difficult for both teams in front of a large St Patrick’s Day crowd.

Even still, Blackrock pushed hard and came within inches of forcing the tie into extra time right at the death but the wall of black and white shirts held firm on their own line to seal a hard-fought victory.

David Hawkshaw was hugely influential once again for the Great Denmark Street school while captain Max Kearney led from the front alongside his back row unit of Conor Doran and Ruadhan Byron.

It wasn’t the type of game we know these two sides can produce but so often these big occasions are decided by the smallest of margins and, on the day, it was Belvo who managed the conditions to prevail.

Source: Colm O'Neill/INPHO

Read 'The 42' article by Ryan Bailey in full here..


Belvedere power their way to third straight Leinster final

Phil Werahiko’s side play to strengths to book place in St Patrick’s Day decider

It might look like a captivating end game but really Belvedere’s power forwards coasted back into the Leinster schools cup final for a third successive season with victory over Clongowes at Donnybrook.

Blackrock, or in the event of a massive upset Gonzaga, will join them at the RDS on St Patrick’s Day (kick-off 2pm).

This felt like and was a routine victory for Phil Werahiko’s well-drilled teenagers. Sodden conditions demanded a pack-focused approach where Belvedere’s heavyweight number eight Ruadhán Byron carried up the guts of the Clongowes defence.

Belvedere’s Max Kearney is tackled by Tom Monaghan and Matthew Martin of Clongowes during the Bank of Ireland Leinster Senior Cup semi-final at Donnybrook. Photograph: Gary Carr/Inpho

Literally; one carry saw him burst through a ruck and gallop away. Such acts of physical dominance swung momentum firmly behind the Great Denmark Street school. Hugh O’Sullivan, the place-kicking fullback but a professional prospect at scrumhalf, was short with his first shot at goal after three minutes but this preceded the loss of Clongowes openside Anthony Ryan to a shoulder injury.

Belvedere only needed a try in either half to prevail. The first, after 10 minutes, came from Byron trucking over the gainline before outhalf David Hawkshaw feinted to attack wide right, only to slip a clever reverse pass that sent left wing Jordan Wilkes skating over untouched.

O’Sullivan converted and added a penalty to make it 10-0 on 20 minutes following another sustained period of pressure created by the malfunctioning Clongowes lineout.

When his pack needed some respite Hawkshaw would send the big number 12 Cian Walsh crashing through midfield.

A comprehensive Belvedere win was promised until the rain came. Clongowes, initially, reacted better with captain and number eight Seán McCrohan blocking down an O’Sullivan kick.

Belvedere survived that moment of panic but were shown up by a clever Clongowes try. Hooker Dan Sheehan threw to the tail of the lineout where McCrohan set up the maul, only for flanker David Jeffares to pop the ball to scrumhalf Joe Murphy. A quick pass saw Ben O’Shea carry straight to the Belvedere line. The gaping hole was caused by defending flanker Conor Doran being clearly impeded (the referee was busy enough with the run of play).

Read this Irish Times article by Gavin Cummiskey in full here...


Belvedere hold off late Clongowes fightback to book Senior Cup final spot

DEFENDING CHAMPIONS BELVEDERE College held off a late surge from Clongowes Wood College at Donnybrook this afternoon, before booking their place in the Leinster Schools Senior Cup decider on St Patrick’s Day.
Belvo had defeated St Andrew’s College and St Michael’s on their path to the last-four, and they broke the deadlock with 11 minutes gone on the clock.An intelligent reverse pass by out-half David Hawkshaw allowed winger Jordan Wilkes to break over the Clongowes whitewash, and this was followed by a routine conversion by Hugh O’Sullivan.

Clongowes were struggling to make an attacking impact, and they fell further behind to an O’Sullivan three-pointer.
Yet, just as it was beginning to look extremely ominous for Clongowes, impressive inside centre Ben O’Shea touched down on 29 minutes – after spotting a gap through the heart of the Belvo defence.
Despite coming up short from his own conversion attempt, O’Shea had reduced his side’s deficit to five points (10-5) in time for the interval.

Yet, 11-time winners Belvo reinforced their superiority after the restart, as powerful lock Oran O’Brien grounded at the end of a period of sustained pressure on the 50-minute mark.
A tricky O’Sullivan bonus kick placed them in pole position for a third consecutive final appearance, but the ever-willing Clongowes were determined to finish with a flourish.

Prop Arthur Odium was halted underneath the posts, but scrum-half Joe Murphy was in the right place to dot down.
An O’Shea two-pointer set up a tense finale but, with skipper Max Kearney leading by example, Belvedere College progressed to face the winners of tomorrow’s game between Blackrock College and Gonzaga College.

Read 'The 42' article in full here..


Hawkshaw swoops late to seal deal for Belvedere

David Hawkshaw of Belvedere College scoring his side's fourth try Photo: Eóin Noonan/Sportsfile

A two-try blast in the opening quarter from full-back Hugh O'Sullivan and left wing Jordan Wilkes gave Belvedere control they never really lost in this Leinster Senior Cup quarter-final at Donnybrook yesterday.
The champions came into this with a question mark over their ability to win enough ball against the bigger, much taller St Michael's pack.

Read this Irish Independent article in full here...


Belvedere College Too Hot For St Andrew’s To Handle

Belvedere’s Ruadhan Byron goes over for a try despite the tackle of Andrew Vincent. Photograph: Inpho

Mark Donnelly was the hat-trick hero as Belvedere moved seamlessly into the Leinster Schools Senior Cup quarter-final at Donnybrook on Sunday.
There was a pace to their attack and an intensity to their blitz defence that was simply too hot for St Andrew’s to handle.The Booterstown school were never less than committed. They had resilient forwards in captain Harry McCarthy, flanker Stephen Keane and number eight Zola Henry, backed-up by the go-forward of centre Peter Sullivan.
Their main problem however was that they could not sustain any measure of pressure long enough to put points on the board in the first-half. And in the second half it was a case of far too little, too late.
Meanwhile, Belvedere didn’t waste time in building on their physical and skill advantages.
Donnelly picked a peach of a line off scrum-half Paraic Cagney’s no-look pass for full-back Hugh O’Sullivan to convert in the third minute.Then it was O’Sullivan’s fine line and smart inside ball which found Cagney in support for the second try of the game in the 11th minute.
St Andrew’s were short on luck too. When their second row Ben Crowley dropped the ball on the short side, Donnelly’s long stride was unstoppable for 19-0 at the break.
There were positive signs though after the break. Sullivan’s finished with conviction following his interception on halfway - Nathan Fitzpatrick converted in the 38th minute. Scores on the board at last for St Andrew’s.
This caused Belvedere to slip up the gears. Second row Oran O’Brien’s low driving body angle, aided by number eight Ruadhan Byron, made the game safe.
From there, it was a question of how many more tries for Belvedere. But St Andrew’s never dropped their heads as they battled against insurmountable possession and territory.
Read this Irish Times article in context here...

We are all looking forward to a great sporting season and there is no complacency in being successful. We wish all those who train for and represent the College, every success in the New Year. The commitment and time required to represent the College is immense and we wish all our players and in particular the rugby teams, every success.
It is great when parents attend the matches as these are important family events. We always emphasise this to the students in the run-up to matches and caution them about their behaviour and language. Please support us in doing this by taking the time to remind your son that his behaviour to and from school, as well as at College functions, is a reflection of his values and the respect he has for himself and fellow commuters, as well as his respect for those he encounters.
Thankfully, we have few incidents where our students behave badly. However, I can assure you that there are serious sanctions for students brought to our attention for their inexcusable behaviour and I ask for your support in ensuring your son understands that you are fully supportive of sanctions for such behaviour. I can also assure you that members of the public are quick to inform us of the poor behaviour of students in the Belvedere uniform and often assume that all our students behave like this or that their parents do not challenge such behaviour. Neither assumption is true.
I would particularly appeal to all parents to remind their sons of the need to behave themselves on the way to and from school and while using public transport – very often (and it’s mostly unconscious or unintentional) they forget that they’re not the only people on the bus/train/Dart, etc. and what they see as boisterousness or having a laugh can be very annoying for other members of the public who share the journey with them.

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