Coleraine turn it around in the second half for bonus point win

Bokkie Carstens on the ball.
Bokkie Carstens on the ball.

Coleraine turned round a 7-19 half-time deficit to win 25-19 against Grosvenor on Saturday in the Junior League Section 2.

The game, only Coleraine’s third league game of the season, was a stern test for Richard Boyd’s developing squad and the hard won result also produced the Bannsider’s third bonus point in the three games as well.

The visiting Grosvenor squad also secure a losing bonus point. The result moves the ‘Cookstown’ sponsored club up to fourth in the league with 11 points after three matches.

Speaking after the game coach Richard Boyd said: “It was a tight game and we were very happy to come away with a win and another bonus point.

“Being so far behind at the break it was great to see the resurgence in the second half. The guys showed real character in adversity.

“We now have a two week break before we go into a concentrated series of games through until Boxing Day. We will be training hard, looking at some of the problem areas from today and allowing some time for injuries to recover.”

In the game at the weekend Coleraine were rocked when Grosvenor secured a converted try after 15 minutes. It was ten minutes before Coleraine captain Mikey Poskitt made a great break from the opposition 22 to score and then convert. With 35 minutes on the clock Grosvenor attacked and scored in the corner. In a sight not often seen in a rugby match, the conversion attempt was charged down by Coleraine’s Alan Clarke.

As the half ended Grosvenor kept up the pressure and scored again, under the posts for an easy conversion. 7-19

Poskitt had to watch the wind deflect the last kick of the half, a penalty, which hit the post, went back into play and was cleared to touch by the visitors. After a stern discussion with the coaches at the break, Coleraine came back in a more dynamic manner. First up Poskitt took advantage of a penalty in the first three minutes.

Niall Irwin took the honours five minutes later with a forceful run down the left wing to score in the corner. The conversion drifted off-target in the wind. With just over half an hour gone a Grosvenor flanker was shown the yellow card and Coleraine pounced as Brian Cochrane scored in the corner. The wind deflected the conversion. The final minutes were tense as firstly Coleraine’s Dijon McCorkell was yellow carded and Coleraine held their collective breath as they watched the resultant penalty drift well wide.

From the restart Coleraine attacked deep into the visitor’s half, the ball firing across the backs into the hands of Clarke who showed amazing pace and footwork to outpace the defence and score in the corner. The conversion drifted off-target though.