On Saturday Donegal played their second ‘home game’ of the season in the City of Derry grounds because of security reasons.
Donegal RFC 40
They however remained undeterred by the strangeness of the location, and as the scoreline suggests, played as if they were at the Holmes. The game began with the Donegal men opting to play with the wind at their backs in the first half, with the mindset of achieving a sizeable half-time lead, and so quelling any possible PSNI fight back.
The game plan worked nicely, as Coaches Garry and David attempted to implement a different structure on the game than Donegal had attempted to impose on previous games. A penalty and a try from winger Jason Vance after ten minutes of play found the Donegal team ten points to the good. This was duly followed up by two more penalties from Cannon and a converted Bryan Mulhern try, which was a result of Mulherns ever present strong work ethic and commitment to supporting the ball carrier. Half-time saw the scores Donegal 23 PSNI 0.
Donegal pressed on in the second half, refusing to be bullied by a large PSNI pack, Shaun Mahon being awarded Man of the match epitomised the immense display from the pack. Donegal would score three more tries in the form of Glenties man Rory Boyle and two from Ballintra native Gareth McMurray so bringing their final tally to 40 points. PSNI would score a late consolation try however, conceded from a set piece off a PSNI lineout. It was a very solid performance from one to fifteen, with the major plaudits going to the pack, whose aggression and tenacity in essence really set the tone for how the game would unfold.
No fixture next weekend for Donegal firsts. Next up is the long trip to Larne, and a crunch match between what looks to be at this stage two genuine league contenders.
Team: Bushell, Vance, Boyle, McMurray, Mosby, Cannon, Gallagher, Brogan (J), Gildea, Mulhern, Gillespie (S), Haughey, Brogan (E), Mahon, Gillespie (R).