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Banbridge hold off Malone to secure win in AIL 2A

By Ronnie Ingram

Published 14/09/2015

All fours: Malone's Shane Kelly tries a novel way of getting past Banbridge's Adam Ervine
All fours: Malone's Shane Kelly tries a novel way of getting past Banbridge's Adam Ervine

Malone rallied late to win a losing bonus point but it was Banbridge who came out on top in the AIL 2A fixture at Gibson Park.

Bann coach Daniel Soper was delighted with the win, the first against Malone in the AIL, but felt the winning margin should have been greater.

"We dominated the first half but were only 10-8 ahead. We didn't show enough patience and composure to turn our possession into points," he said.

Malone's Director of Rugby Raymond Thomas said: "Banbridge looked hungrier for victory and I feel our effort was lack lustre at times and could have been much better.

"It took Bann 23 minutes before they went in front with Andrew Morrison crossing close to touch with Shandon Scott scoring the second five minutes later. Malone's Mark O'Connor reduced the arrears with a penalty and Adam Liddell crossed for a try. After the restart Lee Steenson had a penalty for Bann but O'Connor replied with a try to level the score at 13-13. Steenson goaled a Jason Gribben score and kicked another penalty before home pressure resulted in a converted Michael Barker try.

To travel to Galway Corinthians and win is difficult, but to come away with a bonus point is exceptional. Queen's did just that with a 30-15 success after they had taken a 20-3 half-time advantage. They allowed their opponents back into the game but finished worthy winners with Jonny Milligan, Damon Hall, Jordan Southwell and Paddy Farrell tries for Ali Wright to kick two conversions and two penalties.

In 2B, there were two great results for Ulster teams away from home, with City of Derry earning their bonus point three minutes into the second half at Barnhall 32-20 and Rainey, after trailing 12-0 and losing the services of Conor O'Neill with an ankle injury that held up play for 30 minutes, overcoming Seapoint 21-18. In the remaining game a late James McMahon try gave Dungannon a losing bonus point at Armagh 21-20.

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