A five try bonus point win for Instonians against Cooke was enough for Instonians to secure the Ulster Rugby Championship Division 1 Title following Ballyclare’s loss to Dromore.

Inst got off to a fine start with Cameron Barr crashing over on 6 minutes for an unconverted try. Cooke responded through a Kyle Mitchell try and an Andy Hanna penalty to take an 8 – 5 lead but Instonians’ Colm Cregan found himself in space after a period of pressure and the full back strolled over to give Inst a two point lead at the end of the first quarter.

The back and forth continued in the second quarter, but at a less frantic pace, with Barr crossing for his second try for Inst before Hanna pulled back three points with a penalty to leave the “nominal” home side, Cooke, trailing 11 -15 at half time.

A James Martin try at the start of the second half gave Inst some breathing space but it didn’t last long as Cooke hit back with Mitchell crossing for his second score for Hanna to convert, making it a two point game with Inst leading 18 – 20.

Instonians finally managed to pull away in the fourth quarter as Davy Scott landed a long range penalty before a driving maul was brought down short of the line for the referee to award a penalty try.

Cooke were unable to respond in the later stages leaving the final score Cooke 18 Instonians 30

Picture credit – Vicky Irwin

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