Cookstown 60 Derry YM 0
On Saturday, Cookstown RFC progressed to the second round of the McCambley Cup by brushing aside the challenge of Derry YM at the Mid Ulster Sports Arena.
The game kicked off with Cookstown receiving the ball and set up a series of attacks on the YM line. YM struggled to contain the fast paced Cookstown backs and the aggressive running of the front eight.
The game wasn’t five minutes old when Cookstown had crossed the whitewash: quick ball off the top of a lineout was passed out to the backs where centre Ciaran Currie took the ball to the gain line and give a flat pass to centre partner Stephen McKenna who went under the posts. Paul O’Neill converted.
This was but a taster of what was to follow for remainder of the half. Shortly after kick-off the Cookstown pack mauled over a try at the corner- Owen Mallon getting the touch down.
Strong aggressive running also resulted in excellent scores for flanker Martin Boone and number eight Paul Laverty. Derry YM struggled to get out of their 22 for much of the half.
This was by virtue of the excellent CRFC defence and the aggressive running from the backs which produced a significant amount of go-forward ball.
Further tries followed courtesy of Denver Nugent, Michael McKeown and Kevin McSorley. This gave Cookstown an unassailable 40 point half-time lead.
Cookstown were forced into several changes for the second half, this saw Ciaran Currie retire due to a serious hand injury resulting in a reshuffled backline. A further injury to number eight Paul Laverty resulted in CRFC go down to 14 men.
This made for a more disjointed performance as Cookstown had to adapt to the forced changes. It took twenty minutes for the side to register its first score courteous of centre Denver Nugent. Further scores soon followed from the hard working Martin Boone, Stephen McKenna and dynamic deadlifting machine Owen Mallon.
Team Captain Liam Currie expressed his delight with the performance: “I am pleased with the attitude displayed by the boys today. Once we went 20 points up it would have been easy to get over confident, throw the ball around and play ourselves onto the score sheet - but nearly everyone retained their discipline and stuck to the game plan and set plays.
“Particularly during the last ten minutes when the game was in the bag, the boys stood defiant in defence, put in the hits and showed a determination not to let Derry out of their own 22.”
Team: Liam Currie, Stephen Rea, Owen Mallon, Gavin Stinson, Henry Stewart, Martin Boone, Ryan McLoughlin, Paul Laverty, Ciaran McKenna, Paul O’Neill, Ciaran Currie, Stephen McKenna, Kevin McSorley, Denver Nugent, Michael McKeown, Ali Jafaar, Dave Weir, Martin Devlin.
Cookstown now head into a busy period of fixtures– Clogher Valley away on Saturday 14 December and the home return fixture to Rainey on 21 December. Training continues on Thursdays at 7pm.
The club would like to thank Time Bar for hosting the post-match reception and Daron Patterson for his coverage of the game.