Welcome to Ballymena RFC @ Eaton Park – Est 1887


Ballymena went to MU Barnhall looking for their third win on the bounce, looking to avenge the last minute defeat in the reverse home fixture.

In the first half, Andy Hughes’ side played against a strong wind and Barnhall, looking to go top of the league with a win, made the stronger start. The home side used their experience of the conditions and pinned Ballymena into their own half in the opening half hour.

Barnhall scored three tries without reply to give a 19-0 lead. All three tries came from periods of pressure causing gaps in the defence that were duly exploited.

This seemed to kick Ballymena into action, who then enjoyed a sustained period of possession in the Barnhall half. Ballymena looked dangerous during this spell and were rewarded with a Pierce Crowe try under the posts, converted by Ross McKay, reducing the deficit to 19-7.

Ballymena continued pressurising the line, however the home side, buoyed on by a sizeable crowd, held out. Barnhall scored against the run of play, just before half time to secure a four try bonus point. The ball was spread to the pacy right winger who rounded the covering defence to give a 26-7 lead at the half time break.

At half time, the message will have been to use the conditions and play rugby down in the opposition half, force turnovers and make the most of a dominant scrum who were starting to earn penalties at the set piece.

The home side made the better start and effectively killed off the game in the third quarter. Ballymena’s defence became very narrow and a long pass out to their left winger looked all too easy.

In the second half, Ballymena enjoyed a fair share of possession but wee guilty at times of playing too much rugby in the wrong areas of the pitch. Adam Lamont gave the team a glimmer of hope when a typical powerful run through the Barnhall defence, resulting in a try made the scoreline 31-14.

Despite a lot of endeavour, Ballymena were unable to add to their tally and came away from the game with nothing.

Next up, Ballymena host Cashel at Eaton Park this coming Saturday 25th February, kick off 2.30pm.


1. J Mark

2. A Fergie

3. S Mcwhirter

4. P Hargy

5. P Browne

6. J Howe

7. J Glass

8. A Lamont

9. A Robson

10. R McKay

11. R Irvine

12. C Patterson (c)

13. P Crowe

14. D Millar

15. R McBurney

16. J Taggart

17. J Mawhinney

18. D Mckeeman

19. O Jordan

20. R Weerarathne