Wicklow RFC Vikings Vs Rathrum RFC

On a perfectly still night, with the sun setting over Ashtown Lane, the Wicklow over 35’s played their first 15’s game of the year against an athletic Rathdrum outfit.

Things started badly for the Vikings, giving away a penalty right from the starting whistle which didn’t help settle the nerves, however, the defence stayed strong and the unflappable Niall Geoghegan cleared the Wicklow line with the first of many relieving kicks.

It was a short-lived territorial gain however, the visitors pressed back and a momentary lapse in concentration saw Rathdrum slip in for a try from a quickly taken penalty. Another try followed for the visitors shortly before half time, but Wicklow were still in the game thanks to some fantastic defensive work, with two notable try saving tackles from Jerry O’Neill at full back.

The second half initially brought no respite, Rathdrum were back looking to seal the win but Wicklow’s finest weren’t done. Some sparkling running from a light-footed Simon Norton created headaches for the Rathdrum men. The ball carrying duties falling to any one of Tom Musiol, Eamonn O’Brien, Roy Turland and Timmy Byrne who made some hard yards and finally, Wicklow crossed the line with a well worked effort from Denis Brennan, backing himself for the line from close range.

With everything to play for, Wicklow stretched themselves looking to even the game but, in so doing, let in a third try with just ten minutes left on the clock. Again, the spirit in the Vikings was evident and a full team effort saw them clawing up the pitch, centre George Murphy touching the whitewash with what appeared to be fourteen men at his back for a well-deserved second try.

The comeback was just too late. Rathdrum deserved winners on the night, but a rematch is already on the cards!
The Wicklow welcome extended into the clubhouse where hot food and a warm fire greeted the teams.

The team would like to thank Rathdrum for providing some great Rugby, Dane Schmidt and Timmy Byrne who produced fantastic Chili and Blaithin Watson & Suzanne Turland for their help on the night.
Niall Callery refereed, sincere thanks to him.