Portarlington RFC hosted mid table Malahide last Sunday at Lea Road and in appalling conditions the home side finished strongly to secure a losing bonus point that probably should have been more.
Port looked the better team in the first half when they had the lions share of territory but a combination of strong Malahide defending and poor handling in difficult conditions prevented them from crossing the line.
On one occasion their maul appeared to be cruising over when it was pulled down. The referee awarded a penalty and sin binned the offending player but the home crowd felt that a penalty try should have been awarded. In the end a penalty each meant that the teams went in to the half time break tied at 3-3.
Port came out strongest in the second half and a well finished try from dynamic prop Cathal Bannon was converted by Kieran Hyland. The home side’s forwards continued to dominate and controlled the ground game but the visitors backs showed better accuracy and stronger lines of running and always looked more dangerous.
This eventually proved crucial as they made four visits to the Port 22 in the during the middle twenty minutes of the second half and came away with two tries and two penalties to take a 21-10 lead.
The home side, however, refused to lie down and pushed for a bonus point. Their forwards developed good field position and then Kieran Hyland produced an accurate cross field kick which Ross Doyle finished well despite a cynical effort to obstruct him by the Malahide full back.
With only a score between the sides the momentum waswith Port but time was against them and in the end Malahide held out for the win.