Bonmahon and Dunhill must meet again
Bonmahon . . . 0-7; Dunhill . . . 0-7
In the end a draw unquestionably emerged a fair and equitable result to this Divisional Intermediate Football Championship quarter final affair played at rain soaked Walsh Park on Sunday afternoon last, and the teams are unlikely to meet in replay for at least another fortnight at the most. This long drawn out competition, was thrown further into disarray, when they other quarter final listed for Portlaw and involving Kill and Newtown failed to materialise and it is now going to take a monumental effort to have the County Final played this side of Christmas.
In a way this was a turn up for the books, for Bonmahon based on their form so far this season, looked the most likely side to win out in the East at least, but against a sprightlier and more eager Dunhill outfit, they could count their lucky stars to be still in the hunt. The arrival of the heavy rain showers just before the break, unequivocally militated against all forms of spectacular football – yet the exchanges while always sportingly contested, held interest right to the end, with Dunhill just getting the all important levelling point in the nick of time, to make a second meeting necessary on a date to be made known this week end.
The game itself started on a very lively note, with Dunhill showing up well in the opening exchanges, and well worth their point lead in the 3rd minute, thanks to the ever industrious Jason Burns. Back came Bonmahon to level also from a placed position by Michael Hearne in the 8th minute . Showing a tremendous appetite for the task in hands, Dunhill slowly commenced to make their constant pressure count and it didn’t come as any great surprise, when they regained the lead in the 11th minute, courtesy of an excellent Michael Murphy point, and when Jason Burns added his second three minutes later, Bonmahon folk had reason to be concerned.
However, when Michael Hearne was impeded as he got inside his marker and was bearing down on the Dunhill lines, Richie Walsh reduced the deficit to the minimum from the resultant free, and it was the first mentioned himself also from a placed position, who levelled proceedings for the second time after nineteen minutes lay. Dunhill continued to force the pace – Jason Burns failed from a 20 metre free, and a good effort from Mark Dowdall was foiled by the crossbar. Each side came up with one more score before the break – Michael Hearne on target for the Mahonsiders, and Darren Murphy finishing off a Jason Burns free, to leave it all square at the interval at 0-4 a piece.
Weather conditions continued to deteriorate rapidly as the second half got under way and visibility at times proved difficult as the effects of Winter time grappled with a cloud-burst, and the folly of starting the game at 3,30pm event hinted that there mightn’t be sufficient light to finish the hours play. At any event , Bonmahon had the tonic of a 31st minute point from midfielder Tommy Power, and should have consolidated it as Michael Hearne failed to convert two successive close in frees. It was again all square in the 36th minute, Jason Burns responding with yet another pointed free, and still both teams continued to give their all in pursuit of badly needed scores.
Once again Bonmahon regained the initiative in the 40th minute, when substitute Anthony Power had a point, which should have been a goal , while at the other end of the field, county goalie Thomas Wall was seen to advantage as he foiled Niall Dunphy of a likely goal chance. Then exactly on the stroke of the three quarter hour – Mark Dowdall created the opening himself and his fisted effort from close range, brought about yet again, at six points each.
The concluding quarter proved hectic as play swung from end to end – chances went abegging to either side, until Patsy Casey came surging up the field to put Bonmahon back in front with just two minutes left on the clock. Not to be outdone, Dunhill, fittingly and deservedly secured the all important equalising point seconds from the end, when Jason Burns popped up with his fourth and most important point of the day.
Final score – Bonmahon 0-7; Dunhill 0-7.
Still all to play for
Both sides will surely relish the prospects of a second meeting in the near future, Dunhill came very close to pulling off a major surprise, and in fact played well enough to win – they had excellent performers in the likes of P.J.McGrath, Noel Murphy, Michael Murphy, Brian Cunningham, Thomas Casey, Jason Burns and Mark Dowdall, while Bonmahon who must turn their immediate attention to Saturday’s Junior Hurling Final clash with Ballysaggart, were best served by Patsy and Dermot Casey, Tommy Power, Michael Hearne, David Crowley and Richie Walsh.
Dunhill:- Jason Burns 0-4, Michael Murphy , Mark Dowdall, and Darren Murphy 0-1 each.
Bonmahon:- Michael Hearne 0-3, Richie Walsh, Tommy Power, Patsy Casey and Anthony Power 0-1 each.
Bonmahon:- Thomas Wall, Denis Hearne, Brian Cleary, David Crowley, Finbarr Whelan, Patsy Casey, Jamie Power, Tommy Power, Dermot Casey, Riki Power, Kieran Whelan, Kieran Buckley, Killian Power, Michael Hearne, Richie Walsh. Subs- Anthony Power for K.Power, Eoin Fitzgerald for D. Hearne.
Dunhill:- Seamus Murphy, Noel Murphy, P.J. McGrath, David Raher, Eoin Murphy, Paul Murphy, Richard Murphy, Michael Murphy, Brian Cunningham, Mark Dowdall, Thomas Casey, Darren Murphy, Niall Dunphy, Ronan Crowley, Jason Burns.
Referee – Tadgh O Broin. (Rogha Eireann).
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