The UCD Women took to a sun soaked Belfield Bowl looking to retain the Kay Bowen Colours Cup against a strong DUFC side captained by Niamh Byrne, playing her final game in a Trinity jersey. This game had been flagged early in the season as a massive game for UCD, a chance to disprove the reflection of the league results throughout the year. Christy Haney would lead the Collidge ladies, and her attitude from the warm-up set a brilliant tone, which didn't go unnoticed by Head Coach Geoff Sheehan who says ..
"You could tell the girls were really up for this game, the media messages within the group in the morning were all about excitement rather than anxiety. There was hardly a dropped pass in the warm up drills and the changing room was built into a Collidge fortress so the squad could soak up all the energy that comes from playing in a place like the UCD Bowl."
From the kick off, UCD put Trinity under pressure, pinning them back in their own 22. Outhalf Sarah Gleeson directed phase after phase of attacking rugby through her pack before captain Christy Haney burst through the cover defence to score in the right corner, the tough conversion missed by Ailbhe Dowling. Collidge were soon reminded who they were playing though, as the always dangerous Niamh Byrne spotted a chance around the blindside of a ruck, linking with her winger to level the scores at 5-5 halfway through the first half. UCD went back to basics, with powerful carries from Katie ;Taaffe' O'Sullivan, Sarah 'Sazzles' Glynn and Rebecca Schwartz. Gleeson eased the ball wide as UCD moved into the Trinity 22, and Anna McGann cut a beautiful line only to be hauled down just short of the line. Leinster representative Ali Coleman playing at fullback was quick to spot the lack of fringe defenders at the ensuing ruck and pounced to finish a fine team effort - 10-5 to UCD.
Trinity were back on the offensive soon after, only for Gleeson to read the attack perfectly and intercept on halfway, speeding away to score under the sticks, Dowling adding the extra two. 17-5 to UCD, and the girls really fired up now, their defensive efforts being led by captain Haney. DUFC looked to try and salvage some points before the half-time whistle, but excellent tackles from Jessie Bauer, Eva Jackson, Alannah Byrne and Coleman as last man, saw the Trinity attack pushed into touch and with it, the half time break.
Sheehan then introduced Mary O'Connor into the backrow, and urged the UCD ladies to stick to working the phases and ball retention - Forwards Coach Phil Crowe emphasised that the blind side held opportunities to be exploited and Assistant Coach Alice O'Callaghan reminded the girls, at 17-5 up, it was their game to lose from here.
The second half was a different animal, as the cost of doing business on such a wide pitch in scorching heat began to takes its toll. Possession was conceded by both sides on a regular basis, making it difficult to build any attacking platforms. The deadlock was finally broken when McGann took a lovely pass from Dowling to speed around the Trinity backs and use her strength to break the final tackle, scoring in the corner. 22-5 to UCD, with 15 minutes to go. Sheehan emptied his bench, and as the new players settled into a very tough contest, Trinity took advantage, breaking more than their fair share of tackles to score another try - 22-10, with 10 to go. Gleeson again took the game by the scruff of the neck, and worked through the phases, marching Collidge down the pitch. Kate Hegarty was a constant threat in the backline, linking well with her wingers. The massive UCD support erupted when ref Sue Carty blew the final whistle and gave UCD their second Colours win in a row. Kay Bowen of DUFC presented the cup to captain Haney, and a jubilant group of young women who now had some silverware for all their tough efforts throughout the season. Massive thanks to all who helped organise and coach UCD Women's Rugby, in particular Leah Hayden, Niamh Murray and Alice O'Callaghan. Woman of the Match was awarded to scrum-half Eva Jackson for her faultless service off the deck, massive tackle count and embodying the 'honesty' that her coach had mandated all season. This win is also testament to the great dedication of Head Coach Geoff Sheehan who worked tirelessly throughout the season towards this victory. Thank you Geoff!
AIB Launches 65th Annual Rugby Colours Match
UCD, Dublin, Wednesday 5th April: AIB, proud partners of UCD Rugby, officially launched the eagerly anticipated 65th Annual Colours Match between UCD Rugby and Dublin University Football Club at the UCD Bowl this coming Friday, April 7th.
UCD captain Jamie Glynn was on hand for the launch alongside Trinity’s Brian Slater, while UCD’s Leah Hayden went toe to toe with Niamh Byrne of Trinity for the third year of the Women’s Colours Match.
While many of the UCD and Trinity players will have made new acquaintances on the recent Irish Universities outing against England, friendships will be put aside this Friday as Trinity try to win back-to-back Colours Matches, an accomplishment Trinity haven’t been able to achieve in over 20 years.
The Honours over the last decade are close to an even split, but favour UCD with six wins to Trinity’s four. Both teams went tit-for-tat in the early part of the last decade, with UCD then putting a run of four successive wins together from 2012-2015. Having lost last year’s fixture to a spirited Trinity side in a packed-out College Park, UCD will be looking to snatch back the ownership of the highly valued claret jug, The Colours Cup.
The teams are currently sitting close together in the All Ireland League with UCD in 5th place on 38 points, followed closely by Trinity in 7th place on 35 points. The 6:30pm fixture is one you don’t want to miss.
The Women’s Colours Match will act as the curtain raiser at the UCD Bowl as they kick off at 2:30pm this Friday. It’s the third year the Women’s Colours Match takes place, with Trinity claiming the Kay Bowden Cup in its inaugural year, while UCD took it home to Belfield in 2016.
Both sides have already met this season in Division 1 of the Student Sport Ireland League in October, where they drew 12-12 at Donnybrook. Fridayis a rare opportunity for both teams to play at the UCD Bowl, made even more significant as the venue will also host Ireland’s group matches in the upcoming Women’s Rugby World Cup.
The Colours Match was inaugurated in 1952 at Lansdowne Road with the first title taken by UCD RFC. The idea of a Colours Match was originally discussed between Sarsfield Hogan of UCD and Harry Thrift of Trinity following a Senior Cup win of UCD over Trinity in 1948 by a drop goal to nil. Negotiations went on for some time and with the assistance of the IRFU and of the Lansdowne and Wanderers Rugby Football Clubs, a scheme for an annual Colours match was finally agreed.
The two Universities would play once a year. Each University would act as the host in turn and be responsible for the management for the fixture and the entertainment. Following discussion with the other University, the host would invite the referee for the match. A formal teams’ dinner would then be held following the match.
The Colours Cup trophy was inaugurated in 2002 to mark the Golden Jubilee of the first Colours Match in 1962. It was first presented to the winners of the 51st Colours Match, UCD. The cup is in the form of a claret jug.
This is AIB’s first year sponsoring UCD Rugby. Speaking at the launch, Tom Kinsella, Chief Marketing Officer with AIB said, “We’re delighted to be supporting UCD Rugby Football Club and The Colours Match. The Colours Match is an historic and significant event between two of Ireland’s leading teams in club rugby and we’re very proud to be a part of it. UCD has seen some great players nurture their skills on their journey through the club here, who have now gone on to play for their country and became national heroes.”
“As proud sponsors, we’re hoping UCD Ladies Team will win their first back-to-back Colours title, while the Senior Team will snatch the Colours Cup back and keep it in Belfield this Friday”.
The Womens’ Colours Match kicks off at 2:30pm at the UCD Bowl on Friday, 7th April while the Mens’ Senior Team follow with kick off at 6:30pm.
Notes to Editors:
- Notable players who have played in previous Colours Matches, Brian O’Driscoll (UCD), Jamie Heaslip (Trinity), Adam Byrne (UCD), Josh van der Flier (UCD), Garry Ringrose (UCD), Sean O’Brien (UCD), Fergus McFadden (UCD) and Dan Leavy (UCD) to name just a few.
- Colours Matches are also played between UCD and Trinity in a number of other sports, including Hockey, Rowing and Sailing.
Collidge's first try came from one such attack, with the home defence stretched a penalty was awarded to UCD, a kick to the corner and the forwards mauled over with David Pogatchnik touching down at the back of the ruck. Unfortunately, the conversion was missed as the kickers left their kicking boots back in Dublin.
Encouraged by this score Collidge started to produce some excellent rugby, marshalled by half backs Niall O'Neill and Donnchad Reilly Collidge lifted the tempo and were rewarded with a second try after a strong carry by Jonny Guy, hooker Matthew O'Donovan was on hand to finish the job and touch down for a ten point lead at half time.
The first score of the second half would be crucial and UCD raced out of the blocks and two quick tries from Ronan Foley (much to the delight of his mother!) and Jamie Stone extended the lead. Foley's try was converted to stretch the Collidge lead to 22-0. At this stage our Ireland Under 20’s Rory Mulvihill and Jack Regan were welcomed back into a Collidge jersey and they duly added to the performance. We were also able to get Tim Carroll onto the pitch for the first time this season, after a run of injuries Tim was delighted to be back and was duly rewarded with a try after some strong runs immediately after coming on. Further tries from Tim Costigan, David Pogatchnik and Steven Kilgallen finished off a very professional job. At this stage we asked the bus driver to take a conversion but as he was not on the team-sheet the impressive referee did not allow it.
After the match the lads showered and changed at a speed never seen before as they were keen to return to Dublin to attend the Blue Ball. Not wanting to get their tuxedo creased it was quickly into tee shirts and shorts and onto the bus. The only delay was the centre pairing waiting for their fake tan to dry before getting on the bus.
As we neared Dublin there were a few anxious glances at the phones to see if dates were going to cry off (Sam Griffin still maintained hope that Mike Ross was going to accept his offer and accompany him to the ball). The baby faced assassin, Steven Kilgallen sought hair style advice from Jonny Guy (of Tony & Guy fame) but the bus driver was not keen on Steven using his mirror to style his locks, thankfully the Rockwell pair of Ben Murray & Jamie Stone had a spare mirror for Steven to use, you might think it odd that Ben & Jamie had a mirror between them but as they do everything together it came as no surprise to anyone on the bus. In fact the rest of the squad were waiting to see if they had dates for the ball...Emmet Burns & Robin Reidy swapped beard grooming advice and Alex Holmes had enough hair product for the entire team!
As we got nearer Dublin the call to change into their tuxedos was delivered and suddenly the bus was overcome with a sense of focus and concentration yet to be seen on the pitch. The driver was delighted with this as his bus was now smelling like the fragrance department of Brown Thomas......
Judging by the appearance of some of the players at the 20B match yesterday it is safe to say a good night was had by all..
Collidge play Lansdowne in the Semi Final next Sunday at 2.30 in Lansdowne so please try to come down and support as this will be a very tough battle as both teams look to secure a place in the final.
Each year at about this time UCD Rugby Club’s male and female players collect across the campus for the Irish Cancer Society through the Daffodil Day appeal and will be doing so again on March 9th
€6,500 was collected last year and this year’s target is €8,000.
Please contribute by taking a daffodil pin and donating
For photos click HERE
Thursday March 9th UCD RFC Campus Daffodil Day for Irish Cancer Society
Friday, April 7th Annual Colours Match (UCD Bowl)
Friday, April 28th Annual Dinner (O’Reilly Hall)
1966-1967 Prof Paddy Meenan Al Moroney
1976-1977 Brendan Murphy Dave Ramsey
1986-1987 Al Moroney Mark Connolly
1996-1997 Paul Devlin Denis Finn
2006-2007 Alex Spain Conor Geoghegan
Saturday, September 24th, 2016
13 Collidge players were with Leinster on Saturday at Tallaght Stadium in the narrow 24-22 victory over Gloucester.
Garry Ringrose, Barry Daly, Andrew Porter, James Tracy, Jeremy Loughman, Ross Molony, Josh Murphy, Sean McNulty, Josh van der Flier, Dan Leavy, Peadar Timmins, Adam Byrne (1 try) and Nick McCarthy (2 tries) … all played at some stage.
Note: at the beginning of the second half, 6 of the 8 forwards (including the front rowers) were Collidge .. Porter/Tracy/Loughman/Molony/Murphy/Leavy/Timmins
Well done to all!