Aminabad off the mark

first_imgAminabad got off the mark over hurdles at the first time of asking when landing the Supporters Club AGM Maiden Hurdle at Wexford. Press Association Willie Mullins’ charge had won two out of four starts in bumpers and was always travelling smoothly under Ruby Walsh. The even-money favourite took up the running at the last, and though Domesday Book kept on up the run-in, Walsh did not have to pull out all the stops on Aminabad to score by a length and a quarter. center_img Walsh said: “He jumped like a buck. I’d say two mile two is probably far enough for him. He will go back in trip rather than up I’d imagine. I got a great run through on him.” Mullins and Walsh completed a quick double when Measureofmydreams took the Slaney Maiden Hurdle. Always to the fore, the 2/9 favourite took over from the pacesetting I Knew Well when that rival made a mistake at the last, and was driven home by Walsh to beat the front runner by six and a half lengths. Walsh said: “He did it well but he is not a Wexford horse. He is more of a Navan or Naas horse, a big galloping track horse. “Wexford is just tight enough for him and while he missed the last he picked up well.” last_img read more

Dave Kearney double helps in-form Leinster reclaim top spot with Ospreys win

first_img Biggar had a chance in the last minute of the first half to make it a one-point game again at the interval, but he missed his 45-metre penalty. Biggar spurned another attempt in the second half but soon after slotted over a closer attempt to make it 10-9 and gave the Welsh side hope of continuing their winning run. But despite increasingly wet conditions Leinster scored a fine try to put space between the two teams, created by centre Ben Te’o and finished off by Reid. Sexton’s conversion rebounded off an upright to keep Ospreys within losing bonus point range, but that was taken away from the hosts when Kearney slid in for his second try, converted by Sexton, three minutes from the end. The win, Leinster’s first in Swansea since 2009, saw the Irishmen go back to the top of the table as replacement Noel Reid also crossed to go with Kearney’s brace and Jonny Sexton kicked a penalty and two conversions. There were concerns for both Leinster and Ireland, though, with Jamie Heaslip and Luke Fitzgerald going off with head and shoulder injuries respectively. Ospreys, who had won their previous five PRO12 games, missed out on a losing bonus point with their scores coming from the boot of fly-half Dan Biggar with two penalties and a drop goal. Biggar had returned to the starting line-up to set up a mouthwatering duel with opposite number Sexton, but his fellow Wales internationals Alun Wyn Jones and Justin Tipuric were named on the bench. Isa Nacewa captained Leinster, replacing the banned Fergus McFadden in a side showing six changes – including the return of Sean O’Brien and Heaslip – from the win over Connacht. Leinster just about edged the first half to lead 10-6 at the break, b ut it was far from comfortable and after going through 20 phases at the start of the match the visitors failed to get any change out of the home team’s solid defence. And it was Ospreys who broke the deadlock when Biggar fired over a drop goal from 30 metres. Leinster’s cause was not helped by the loss of Heaslip after a clash of heads but their kicking game was always a threat to Ospreys and it was a cross-kick from Sexton that led to the game’s opening try. Sexton picked out Kearney and he outsmarted Jeff Hassler and replacement Sam Davies to get over the line. Sexton converted to give his side a 7-3 lead after 18 minutes. Bigger reduced the deficit to one point with a 24th-minute penalty after Rhys Ruddock was caught collapsing a maul following a fine break by Ospreys centre Owen Watkin, but Sexton restored his side’s advantage three minutes later after Brendon Leonard had infringed at a ruck. Press Association Wing Dave Kearney scored two tries as Leinster made it seven straight Guinness PRO12 wins with a hard-fought 22-9 victory over Ospreys at a rain-drenched Liberty Stadium. last_img read more