After last week’s convincing win over Rainey Old Boys and Greystones narrow victory at Stevenson Park in early December, Dungannon were hopeful of adding to their league points tally. However, Greystones were keen to bounce back following their defeat to league leaders MU Barnhall.
Dungannon could have kept the result a bit closer in this game at Dr Hickey Park had they taken their chances while in good attacking positions in the third quarter of the game. In particular failure to find touch from outside the home 22 and shortly afterwards a crucial line out loss allowed Greystones to relieve the pressure. Apart from one or two exceptions the lineouts and scrums did generally function well for Dungannon.
Dungannon had an early chance to score but the winger failed to hold on to the pass from a good attacking position. After 15 minutes Greystones pressure brought them a try through their number 8, Mannion. Shortly afterwards a fine kick and chase from 40 metres out by Caolin Mulgrew got the visitors first points with a corner touch down. John Buckley was just wide with the conversion.
Greystones willingness to move the ball wide was matched by a resolute Dungannon defence. Just before half time number 7, Dempsey extended the home lead despite a knock on in the lead up to the try. Winger Kealy again converted making it 14-5 at the break.
After the restart a very level Greystones pass out of their defence brought play deep into the Dungannon 22 but the visiting defence held firm. Dungannon countered on a number of occasions and while the handling was sound, penetration was lacking.
On 50 minutes James McMahon made a welcome return, after a long absence through injury, for Stephen Todd and Adam Evans replaced John Russell. A few minutes later a speculative Greystones kick was slow to be dealt with by the visiting defence and an attempted Dungannon clearance, not for the first time was charged down and picked up by Kealy to score in the corner.
Dungannon continued to compete well and forced the home side to concede penalties, one of which failed to find touch but another was converted by John Buckley making it 19 – 8.
Greystones had the last word when replacement Simmonds rumbled over to secure the bonus point win with Kealy converting leaving the final score 26 – 8.
This was another disappointing day for Dungannon with no reward for so much effort. Greystones were the better side on the day and with their four tries deserved their win but the result should have been a lot closer had Dungannon not made so many basic errors. On a positive note it was great to James McMahon back in the blue and white.
Dungannon Team:- C McGeough, M Montgomery, M Brown, A Weir, C Mulgrew, J Buckley, J Russell, R Stewart, M Allister, G Sinnamon, S Todd, G Lopez, D Leyburn, M Riddell, A Gormley, J McNeill, J Gamble, P Doran, J McMahon, A Evans.