Arklow hosted local rivals Gorey in a much anticipated local derby at the oval last Sunday.
This Arklow team had a bit of a point to prove after a very disappointing season last year and wanted to perform well in front of a size-able home crowd.
Any early nerves were soon dealt with as Arklow started the game with an intensity and hunger that Gorey were simply unable to match. At every breakdown, at each scrum and line-out Arklow were the more aggressive and that hunger soon told when after several phases and some great offloading, full-back Paddy O’Toole crossed in the corner for Arklow’s first try.
Dean McCormac converted. The home side kept the pressure on and after a great carry by Dermot Laide, Steven Snell took a great line and received the pass to glide in under the posts.
Gorey seemed a bit shell shocked by the pace that Arklow started with and another well taken try by Luke Bulmer, who barnstormed his way over in the corner, kept this young team on the back foot.
Arklow started the second half as they finished the first with Joe Jones crossing after a sustained period of attack. Gorey then seemed to galvanise and went on the offensive to show what they could do and after some very nice running from their back line, they managed to break the Arklow defence and score an unconverted try.
This gave the away team a lift and they sustained pressure on the Arklow line for the final twenty minutes of the match. Whereas Arklow might have buckled before, they rallied now and as much as Gorey tried, they could not cross the line. Final score, Arklow 24 – 5 Gorey.
This was a great team performance from Arklow and next weekend’s trip to Wicklow should be another great derby game. Wicklow v Arklow 1.30 Sunday 13th September Arklow team; Paddy Brennan, Dermot Laide,Steven Snell, Jack Joyce(Man of the match), Conor Rochford, Aidan Louth, Tom Scarfe, Danny Clear(captain), Mark Hynes, Richard Murphy, Dave Dillon, Joe Jones, Pete Lynch, Dean Mccormac, Paddy Phelan, Luke Bulmer, Ryan Smart, JP Leonard.