The semi-final line-up for The Bank of Ireland Connacht Junior Cup is complete, with Ballinrobe, Creggs, Tuam and Westport all battling it out to be this year’s champion.

Ballinrobe made it into their third Junior Cup semi-final in a row, defeating a Galwegians 2nd XV who held a 19-6 lead early in the second half. However, the Mayo team didn’t give up and fought hard to eventually claim the 19-21 win in Crowley Park.

They face Creggs in the semis after they defeated Connemara in an intriguing quarter-final clash. Eoghan Coyle and Ronan Dowd were their try scorers on the day, sending their side into the last four under the lights on their home pitch.

Meanwhile, Tuam had a hard-fought victory over Dunmore, eventually coming out 6-0 victors. That was thanks to two first-half penalties from Carl Ward and a resolute defence which didn’t give anything up. They face a Westport side that got the better of University of Galway, scoring two tries to their counterparts single try in a 15-10 win.

Both semi-finals will take place the weekend of March 4/5.

The draw has been made for the Bank of Ireland Junior Cup quarter-finals. 

Tuam’s reward for their comprehensive win over Monivea is a North Galway derby with Dunmore. Tuam showed a supreme attacking prowess in that game, crossing the whitewash six times in a comprehensive 35-7 victory.

Their opponents, Dunmore, didn’t have it as easy, eventually overcoming a resolute Castlebar by a scoreline of 28- 21.

Creggs put in an epic attacking display to defeat Corinthians 2nd XV by 61-19 on Saturday evening. The Buccaneers and Connemara last 16 game wasn’t played, with a decision on that tie being finalised by the competitions committee.

Galwegians 2nd XV were dominant in their last 16 tie with Sligo 2nd XV. They won by 36-5 and will play a Ballinrobe side that continued their impressive cup run with a 20-5 victory over Ballinasloe.

Westport go into the last eight after their 36-14 win over Ballyhaunis. They will play University of Galway, who had a tight 10-13 victory over Corrib RFC.

Full Bank of Ireland Connacht Junior Cup Quarter-final draw

Tuam RFC v Dunmore RFC

Creggs  v TBC (Buccaneers 2nd XV v Connemara last 16 tie wasn’t played)

Galwegians 2nd XV v Ballinrobe RFC

Westport RFC v University of Galway

Connemara RFC is the Bank of Ireland Cawley Cup champions for 2022. 

They defeated Westport on a scoreline of 39-19 in a cold Crowley Park on late Sunday afternoon. The game got off to a blistering start, with O’Toole brothers Michael and Henry both going over in the same corner to give the Clifden side an early commanding lead.

It was a lead that they would not give up for the entirety of the game, with David O’Reilly adding another try for Connemara before Westport even got on the board.

Leading up to half-time, some sustained pressure from Westport saw Poland international, Kacper Palamarczuk, grasp the opportunity to go through a gap in Connemara’s defence. This left the score 19-7  at the break.

Shortly after half-time, Westport gathered in their droves to push on again, with a heap of bodies ensuring the ball touched down over the line in the Galway City end.

However, that was as good as it good for the Mayo team, with Michael O’Toole adding another, before his brother Henry scored the try of the game, breaking from his own 22 outpacing several members of the Westport defence to touch down under the posts.

Connemara played out the rest of the game with relative ease, running out 39-19 victors, with captain Ian Staunton lifting the Cawley Cup trophy soon after.

In the Bank of Ireland Curley Cup final, University of Galway Rugby outscored Corinthians 2nd XV by seven tries to two, coming out 41-10 victors in Ballyhaunis.

In a well organised team display, College flyhallf Sean O’Grady capitalised on several loose passes from Corinthians, providing a strong counter-attacking platform for the side. A mention must also go to Peter Magliocco, who seemed to be getting on the end of every attack, eventually crossing the whitewash three times.

Lock Tireoin McCabe lifted the Bank of Ireland Cawley Cup as captain for the side.

A late try from Brian Ruane helped Tuam RFC overcome Buccaneers 2nd XV to become Bank of Ireland Cawley Plate champions for 2022, with a final scoreline of 19-22. Eoin Sweeney was brilliant throughout and picked up a brace of tries, as well as the Man of the Match, for the victors.

Corrib RFC overcame Ballinasloe by the minimum of margins in the Bank of Ireland Curley Plate final in Tuam, with the game ending 21-20.

Corrib won out in a contest between two very evenly matched sides, bringing the Curley Plate back to Headford for 2022.

In another close game, Oughterard RFC overcame OLBC in the Bank of Ireland Curley Bowl.

Both sides crossed the whitewash twice, but Oughterard edged it, finishing 20-12 victors in the end. Darragh O’Halloran won man of the match for the side, putting in an excellent performance in both attack and defence.

The Bank of Ireland Cawley Cup returned this weekend, signifying the start of a new season for some of Connacht’s club sides.

Pool A

Pool A saw Buccaneers 2nd XV travel to nearby Creggs, while Castlebar hosted Dunmore.

Buccaneers 2nds looked too strong for their near neighbours, racing into a 16-0 lead at the break. Creggs did manage to get a try on the board, but it was too little, too late, as the visitors travelled back to Athlone with a 21 points to spare.

The other game saw Castlebar prove their worth against Dunmore. The first half was a tentative affair, with the Mayo side going into the break just a point up at 6-5.

After both sides scored two tries, kicking proved the difference as Castlebar ran out 20-12 victors.

Pool B

On a fantastic day for rugby, Connemara welcomed Westport to Clifden for their first game of the season on Sunday. Both sides showed excellent attacking talent throughout, with the Connemara All Blacks eventually coming out on top of a 29-15 scoreline.

Group B’s other game was a Galway derby, as Monivea hosted Tuam.

Here the away side proved to be dominant throughout, scoring eight tries on their way to a 5-48 win. In what was one of the performances of the weekend, Ian Murphy touched down for a hat trick of tries for the visitors.

A special interpro half-time minis rugby took place at The Sportsground last Friday with 6 clubs in all taking part.
 
Kids from Galwegians, Gort, Galway Bay, Oughterard, Corinthians and Tuam played in front of a sell-out crowd during the break in Connacht’s Guinness PRO14 loss to Leinster.
 
Check out some of the best pics below!

The draw for the 2019 Junior Cup draw has thrown up two intriguing ties with all four teams looking to move one step closer to the final at The Sportsground later in the season.
 
The draw took place at The Sportsground at lunchtime today after yesterday’s four quarter-finals when Tuam, Creggs, Castlebar and Connemara emerged victorious.
 
The last four ties will see Castlebar with a home tie against Creggs while Tuam play host to Connemara, with both ties taking place this Sunday at 2pm. The final is scheduled for Sunday 24th March at The Sportsground.
 
You can watch how the draw unfolded below.
 

On Wednesday 5th December, 40 aspiring kickers and fly-halfs from around the province gathered at Tuam Rugby Football Club for the first ProZone: Kicking workshop with Jack Carty, David Horwitz, Luke Carty and Eric Elwood.
 
Here’s some of the highlights from a brilliant evening, and keep an eye out for further ProZone events later in the season!
 

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