If revenge is a dish best-served cold, so – it seems – is rugby.

Cold it was in Headford, but the fare on offer was appetising to say the least. Corrib hosted Ballinasloe in weather which swung from Independence Day darkness and midwinter tropics.

Nevertheless, both sides went about the job in a business-like manner throwing up a keen contest of which both can be suitably proud. Not unlike a fine film, the fixture was no more exciting than in its closing stages.

Safe-ish at 10 points to three, Ballinasloe should have sought the sideline but a timely turnover gifted Corrib the ball and they sought about rectifying the previous 78 minutes. Rucking and mauling their way relentlessly toward the Ballinasloe line, they based camp in front of the visitors’ sticks and for over two minutes used pick-and-go tactics to erase the seven-point deficit.

Ballinasloe responded in kind with dogged backs-to-the-wall bodies-on-the-line stuff to prevent the telling try. The wet hair which didn’t fall out on the sideline turned grey, and fingernails receded to the flesh. In the finish, an unfortunate/fortunate knock-on brought proceedings to a close and, with a final whistle blast, Ballinasloe emerged victorious 10-3 away from home.

Corrib started with the greater flair but fullback Evan Flynn was unable to convert an early penalty chance into points. Ballinasloe sought a more subtle route to opposition territory, with ball-in-hand and forward support. Jamie Kelly at nine demanded the heavies release the ball and found Cian Loughrey on the wing. Cathal Brophy added the extras from wide out. Brophy added three more on the 36-minute mark courtesy of a Corrib offside.

Flynn replied with the same six minutes into the second half, but Corrib was unable to post any more points.

Ballinasloe nine Eugene Kenny and his partner in crime Brian McLaughlin stood out at eight.

Ballinasloe: D.Burke, C.Loughrey, C.Johnston, L.Feerick, N.Kelly, C.Brophy, J.Kelly, J.J.Carey, A.O’Hara (capt), T.Dolan, N.Staunton, M.Harrigan, H.Reynolds, R.Wakefield, A.Doorly. Replacements (all used): K.Headd, D.Fenton, E.Courtney, A.Wade.

One of Ireland’s best known comedians, the internationally acclaimed Tommy Tiernan, is bringing his show, Poop, to the Shearwater Plaza Hotel on Thursday, December 15, curtains up at 8.30pm. This show is already receiving rave reviews from critics and is being organised in conjunction with Ballinasloe RFC as a fundraiser. This is a rare opportunity for his legion of fans in not only the Ballinasloe area bur greater Mayo and north Galway to see him live.

Tickets for the venture are keenly priced at €28 and may be obtained from the Shearwater Plaza Hotel (tel 090 963 0400), Gerry Stronge’s, Main St, Ballinasloe (090 964 5455) or Ticketmaster. Further details available from Shearwater Hotel. All support for this great night welcome.

contributed – Liam Courtney

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