In a highly anticipated clash at Balreask Old, Navan Rugby Football Club’s Senior Men’s first XV emerged victorious against Greystones in Round Six of this season’s Energia All-Ireland League Men’s Division 2A. Navan secured a hard-fought win with a final score of 20-17, marking a positive turnaround in their season. Navan entered the game determined to break a three-match losing streak and realign their season’s trajectory.
Greystones seized an early lead in the first half with a try to the right of the posts after two minutes, followed by a successful conversion to go 0-7 up. Twelve minutes later the visitors extended their lead with a successful penalty kick, pushing the score to 0-10.
Then in the 21st minute a pivotal moment occurred as Greystones’ No.8 received a yellow card, resulting in a sin-bin. Navan capitalized on the numerical advantage, executing a successful catch and drive, leading to a try scored by Harry Hester to the left of the posts. Rory Gordon converted, narrowing the gap to 7-10.
On 32 minutes Greystones missed a penalty attempt, causing confusion in the Navan in-goal area. Despite a goal-line dropout, Greystones maintained territorial advantage putting pressure on the home team. However just before halftime, Navan leveled the score with a penalty kick by Rory Gordon. The teams entered halftime with the score tied at Navan 10, Greystones 10.
The second half proved to be as thrilling as the first, with both teams vying for dominance. Three minutes after the break Greystones regained the lead with a try to the left of the posts, and the conversion was successful to regain the lead 10-17.
Navan responded with sustained pressure, resulting in a try by winger Peter McEntaggart on 59 minutes. Rory Gordon’s successful conversion kick from near the touchline leveled the game at 17-17.
Then on 66 minutes Greystones were penalized for offside within kickable range of the posts, and Rory Gordon’s successful penalty kick gave Navan the lead for the first time in the game to lead 20-17.
Coming into the last few minutes Navan pressed forward, nearly crossing the Greystones try line, but the referee adjudged the ball to be held up, leading to a restart via a goal-line dropout.
Just on the stroke of Full-Time, a late surge by Navan fell just short as Greystones ran the ball out, but were tackled into touch. The referee then blew his whistle signaling the end of the game.
The victory propels Navan to sixth place in the league table as they head into the second rest weekend. The next challenge awaits with a challenging away fixture against second-placed Cashel on Saturday, 2nd December, followed by a home game against UL Bohemian’s on Saturday, 9th December, marking the last fixture of the calendar year at Balreask Old. The team aims to build on this momentum and continue their upward trajectory in the league standings.