Confusion reigns in rugby farce

Story by Jimmy Geoghegan

Saturday, 13th April, 2019 6:39pm

Confusion reigns in rugby farce

Navan captain Gary Faulkner (right) with his Skibbereen counterpart

Confusion reigned at the end of the rugby All-Ireland u-18 final today in Mullingar RFC after Navan and Skibbereen were left to share the trophy.

Both sides had served up an entertaining contest that held the large attendance enthralled to the end. It was what happened after the final whistle that caused the confusion and left a real sense of anit-climax among the spectators.  

At first it was thought that Navan had won as they scored the opening try and in that age group in Leinster a game that ends in a draw is awarded to the team who scores the first try. 

The referee then informed the players that in fact the rule states that the trophy should be shared as dictated by IRFU rule - something that left a lot of people unhappy with the outcome. The Navan players in particular appeared disappointed by the ruling. Not that anybody had an issue with the match official, he was applying the rules as they exist. 

Despite finding themselves under pressure for lengthy spells in the opening half Navan led 7-0 at the interval after Gary Faulkner powered over for a touchdown with Jeaic Timmons converting. 

A very enterprising Cork side hit back in the second-half with a try of their after Adam O'Regan powered over with Jamie Shanahan converting. 

The game ebbed and flowed with Navan taking the lead again after Timmons scored from a penalty. However in the closing stages Shanahan also scored from a penalty to leave the teams level. 

Then at the full-time whistle it became clear the teams would have to share the trophy - and nobody seemed all that happy about the IRFU ruling that dictated it should be so.  

Navan are in two more competitions - the North-East final against Skerries at Ashbourne and the Darcy Cup sem-final next Saturday. 

Match report, comment and photographs from game in next issue of the Meath Chronicle 

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