ROUND-UP: Ireland U17 Men play tournament in Cardiff
June 26, 2017
The Ireland Under 17 Men's squad travelled to Cardiff at the weekend to play a series of three friendly international games against the Welsh Under 17 and Under 18 Men's teams.
Ireland U17 Men results:
U17 Wales 70-98 Ireland U17
U18 Wales 71-97 Ireland U17
U18 Wales 66-87 Ireland U17
Ireland U17 Men - Detailed results:
Day 2 (Sunday, June 25th)
U18 Wales: 66
Ireland U17: 87
The Irish U17 men's team took on the Wales U18 squad on a wet Sunday morning in Cardiff. From winning the tip, the Irish lads ran a strong offence, winning the opening quarter 15-22 with some fast breaks and good offensive rebounding putting them ahead.
A much closer second quarter saw Wales make a very strong comeback, with sharp three-point shooting closing the gap and putting Ireland under pressure. It was the wake-up call Ireland needed though, and they kicked back into action with smart defence, great shooting and aggressive rebounding to lead 54-67 at the end of the third. This lead was never relinquished, and they finished the game with an impressive second half performance, winning the game by 21 points in the end.
Speaking afterwards, Coach Paul Kelleher stated: "This was a productive weekend. We got more out of it than I thought we would. We learned what habits we developed as automatics, and we also found that we still have a lot of work to do as a group as a whole. There were a lot of positives, and some of that is knowing what we need to get better at and the direction we want to take.
"There were areas offensively and defensively I was really happy with, but we definitely found out we were better offensively than defensively and we need to catch our defence up. All the players did well, and now we have International camp next week before we finalise the next phase of the programme."
Day 1 (Saturday, June 24th)
Day one in Wales saw Ireland U17 men's team secure two big wins over the Welsh U17 and U18 sides.
The first game saw Ireland go head-to-head with the host's Under 17 side. After taking a few minutes to settle, the Irish began to dictate the pace of the game and a high intensity third quarter saw them put the game beyond reach of the Welsh and they ran out convincing 98-70 point winners in the end.
A tough challenge lay ahead in the second game as Ireland lined out against the Welsh U18 men's team. Ireland came out very strong from the off though, and set themselves up well for the game by finishing 27-10 points ahead by the end of the first. Wales came into the game more in the second quarter and caused a lot of problems for the Irish defence, but they squad composed themselves once more and by the third quarter, had once more put themselves on the road to victory, winning out 97-71 in the end.
The squad that represented Ireland was: