Sean Frawley, Joe Coffey, Josh Rowland, Evan Murphy, Dylan Murphy and David Corcoran show their disappointment after the narrow defeat away to Navan on Saturday. Photo: Bridget Delaney

Only a freak set of results can deny Ormond the league title

By Shane Brophy

“We are there, but not there,” was how Nenagh Ormond Director of Rugby John Long described their situation follow Saturday’s last gasp defeat to Navan in the All-Ireland League.

Nenagh are ten points clear at the top of the Division 2A table with two games to play and a maximum of ten points to play for, which means they need just one more point from their two remaining games to confirm their status as champions and promotion to Division 1B.

However, considering Nenagh have a points difference advantage of 206 points over second placed MU Barnhall, even if the Tipp side were to claim no more points and Barnhall were to get ten from their final two games, it would take something extraordinary for Nenagh Ormond not to be confirmed champions at this stage.

They did have one hand on the cup briefly towards the end of Saturday’s game before Navan’s last gasp try to win a gripping encounter.

“It was very scattered, I don’t know what it was, it is hard to explain,” Long said of the frantic nature of the game and Nenagh’s performance.

“It’s no different than any away game, it is hard to get settled in and get moving. They (Navan) started well and put us under pressure and didn’t take the foot of the pedal.

“The wind was a big factor. The referee was frustrating for both sides and was big part of the game as it never flowed.

“Great credit to Navan, they are fighting for their lives too. Other results might not have gone their way.”

Clinching the title at home in front of their home fans will be the most fitting, against second placed MU Barnhall, but Long says Nenagh will be professional in their approach to the game.

“Head Coach Derek Corcoran spoke before the game said we have a block of three (games) left, regardless of the result today, we have won all our blocks all season, so we aren’t celebrating anything good, bad, or indifferent today. It is about the block of three and winning that block,” Long added.

“It would be nicer to clinch it in Nenagh and reward the crowd and supporters who come out every Saturday. It would be history in Nenagh and for the club and the more support the better.”

The IRFU have confirmed that the league trophy will be presented to Nenagh Ormond on Saturday if they are confirmed champions, and with the URC trophy also be on site for the game, it promises to be a special day at New Ormond Park.


New Ormond Park, Lisatunny

Saturday, 30th March

Kick-off @ 2.30pm