Wicklow have romped through to the quarter-finals of the All-Ireland Junior Cup following a commanding eight-try win over Tipperary side Kilfeacle in Ashtown Lane on Saturday.
Wicklow earned access to the first-round of the knock-out competition by virtue of finishing fourth in the league last season, with the other three Leinster representatives — Enniscorthy, Dundalk, and reigning champions Ashbourne — all advancing to the quarter-final stage.
On a cold and sunny day in Wicklow, the hosts took advantage of the wind being in their favour in the first-half, with Simon Breen touching down for the first try of the aftenoon following good work by the Wicklow backs.
Wicklow got their second try of the afternoon shortly before the half-time whistle, with Ben Porter breaking through to touch-down. Club captain Niall Earls converted as Wicklow went into the break with a 12-0 lead.
Early in the second-half, Kilfeacle desperately tried to force their way over the Wicklow line, only to be repelled by a resilient and stubborn defensive line. The Tipperary side did eventually manage to get their first score of the game with 35 minutes on the clock through a successfully kicked penalty to make it 12-3.
Unfortunately for the Munster side, that would be the only score that they would manage to get in the game as Wicklow ran riot.
Ten minutes on from Kilfeacle’s sole score, Charlie Butterworth ran over for Wicklow’s third try, before winger Dean Leonard touched down for another converted try to make it 26-3 five minutes later.
Pablo Castello Vinolo got his side’s, and the game’s fifth try soon after following some neat interplay between himself and Luke Gersekowski, before Eanna Killeen came off the bench to get the sixth as Wicklow continued to cut Kilfeacle apart.
That six-try tally was extended to seven through Dean Leonard touching down for his second, before Ben Porter rounded off a clinical second-half display to score his second, and his side’s eighth, try of the day to send Wicklow strolling through to the quarter-finals of the All Ireland Junior Cup on a score of 52-3.
Wicklow RFC XV: Eddie Downes, Jack McKenna, Pablo Castello Vinolo, George Naoupu, Stephen Swan, Fergus Ward, Luke Gersekowski, Charlie Butterworth, Mark Higgins, Niall Earls (c), Simon Breen, Shane Farrar, Billy Ngawini, Dean Leonard, Ben Porter.
Subs: Jay Byrne, Brian Shortt, Eanna Killeen, Neil Dickenson, Mark Nicholson, Denis Higgins, Alex Porter.
Tries: Charlie Butterworth, Simon Breen, Dean Leonard (2), Ben Porter (2), Eanna Killeen, Pablo Castello Vinolo.
Conversions: Niall Earls (6)