IT was a good weekend for Bandon and Kinsale as both ensured they ended the rugby season with silverware.
At Musgrave Park, Bandon won the County Cup for the tenth time, reclaiming the trophy last won in 2017 as they saw off Mallow on a 32-24 scoreline.
Ben Ridgeway was the standout star for Bandon as he scored 25 of their points, though he was pushed for the man of the match accolade by Mallow’s Seán Glynn, who scored three tries despite finishing on the losing team.
Bandon had the wind in the first half and made that count as Ridgeway and Cian Buttimer both got over for early tries, with Ridgeway converted in each case as they went 14-0 ahead. However, Mallow responded well and both Hayes and Owen Glynn crossed over to leave them just two points behind at half-time.
Early in the second half, the North Cork side took the lead as Seán Glynn got in for his second try, converted by Jimmy Glynn, but Bandon were back in front as Ridgeway sent over a pair of penalties. He looked to have given them a commanding advantage once more with a brilliant solo try to put them six ahead again, but once more Mallow were able to summon a riposte, with Glynn getting his hat-trick try to cut the deficit to a point once more.
A nervy closing period ensued, but in the final minute Ridgeway finally put the outcome beyond doubt as he again waltzed through for a try and followed that up with a conversion to ensure an eight-point win.
Also at Musgrave Park, Kinsale were 19-6 winners over Charleville to claim the O’Neill Cup for the third time – like Bandon, they had also won the competition in 2017. Fittingly, they became the first winners of the new trophy, replacing the original, which had been presented by the O’Neill family from Kinsale.
A try by Fergus Gimblett converted by Sean Kingston gave Kinsale a 7-3 interval lead. Jesse Smith replied with a penalty for Charleville.
Dan Cronin and Rob Armstrong added further tries for Kinsale and John Sheehan kicked a conversion. Charleville’s only reply was a second penalty from Smith.