Banbridge hold out to pick up the points

BANBRIDGE 29 ARMAGH 24

Banbridge repeated their Senior Cup success in last weekend’s Ulster Senior League game at Rifle Park, holding out against a late Armagh rally to pick up five points.

Skipper Richard Rainey kicked his side into an early lead when Bann went over the top at a ruck. It was to set a worrying pattern in the first half as the home side continually fell foul of the referee. So despite picking up two tries, Bann’s lead at the break was a meagre three points.

Left winger Hugo Harbinson, returning to his home club after a couple of seasons, grabbed the first try. Then in the 16th minute Simon McKinstry rounded off a driving maul from a lineout to touch down for the second, with Scott adding the conversion.

Rainey’s second penalty kept his side in touch and although Scott redressed the balance after an Armagh player had been yellow-carded, the Armagh captain struck twice more before the interval to leave his side just 15-12 adrift.

Ten minutes into the second half Bann scored their third try, Matthew Irvine forcing his way over, with Scott converting.

Bann’s fourth try was the pick of the bunch and again Andrews was influential. His arcing run created an overlap on the opposite flank and six passes later Harbinson touched down for a second time, with Scott doing well to add the extras.

Scrum half Harry Doyle scampered in for a first try for the visitors with ten minutes remaining and flanker James Morton gave his side hope of an unlikely win. But Bann held out and, on the balance of play, deservedly claimed their first Ulster League win of the season.