SCHOOLS’ CUP RUGBY: Dalriada unable to deny Campbell College a 40th final appearance

Campbell College Justin Savage  and Dalriada School Alan Montgomery
Campbell College Justin Savage and Dalriada School Alan Montgomery

DALRIADA 3 CAMPBELL COLLEGE 24

Campbell reached their 40th Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Cup final with a comprehensive victory over Dalriada at Kingspan Stadium to set up an all Belfast decider on St Patrick’s Day with holders RBAI.

Campbell outscored the Ballymoney School by four tries to none and were rarely threatened in defence.

Campbell took the lead after eight minutes with a try from blindside flanker Jamie MacCartney.

Dalriada had a scrum in their own 22, Campbell were able to shove them off the ball allowing MacCartney to pick up and run over unopposed but scrum half Malcolm Corry missed the conversion.

Dalriada hit back on 12 minutes after their first sustained period in Campbell territory earned a penalty and centre Stewart Moore slotted over from in front of the posts.

The Belfast school got their second try on 15 minutes following good work by the forwards the ball was spun inside and winger Jack Howard was able to beat a couple of defenders to race under the posts and Corry converted.

Campbell scored their third try on 32 minutes, prop Tom O’Toole made the initial break in midfield he fed winger Justin Savage, the ball was spun to the left wing, with a four on two overlap the ball was worked through the hands to create the score for centre Nicolai Koplewesky to give the Belfast side a 17-3 half time lead.

Dalriada had chances to cut the Campbell lead but a lack of precision in the 22 and good defence prevented them from scoring.

Campbell’s fourth try arrived on 55 minutes, No 8 Jack Barry-Glendinning got the ball on the Dalriada 10 metre line, he used his power and pace to beat four defenders and slide under the posts with Corry adding the simple conversion.

Campbell should have increased their lead five minutes later when they kicked a penalty to touch, from the resulting lineout they set up a maul and O’Toole rumbled close to the line but was stopped short, the ball was recycled and flanker John Crowther drove for the line and was stopped, the ball was released to the backs but Dalriada were able to force a turnover.

Campbell wasted another good opportunity to score when MacCartney carried deep into the Dalriada 22 the ball was recycled but Howard knocked on.

Dalriada had a late chance to get a consolation try when full back Thomas Hunter broke out of defence he carried deep into the Campbell half before feeding winger Gavin McCaughan but he lost the ball in contact.

Dalriada: T Hunter, R Fallows, S Moore, D Postermak, G McCaughern, A Johnston, M McConnaghie; A Christie, J Dowey, S Gamble, J Horsbrough, F Wiseman, M Kernoghan, A Montgomery, M Lockhart

Replacements: G Phillipson, W Allen, M Young, A Stewart, J Butcher, M Kennedy, C Creith, L Henry

Campbell College: B Webb, J Savage, J Haldane, N Koplewsky, J Howard, P Beverland, M Corry: M Russell, J Boyle, T O’Toole, J Nelson, M Collim, J Macartney, J Crowther, J Barry-Glenndinning

Replacements: J Chambers, J Clarke, J McKee, M Robinson, T Brady, R Cahoon, O Yandall, R Meharg

Ref R Kerr