Champions prevail but only just after cracking affair

 

Ballyduff Upper 1-17 Fourmilewater 0-16

 

Champions Ballyduff Upper and Fourmilewater served up a smashing hour of hurling at Fraher Field last Saturday – with both teams still in the hunt for outright honours.

The challengers had the best possible starts in this eagerly awaited fixture and had opened up a three-point lead inside the opening 10 minutes.

Yet having thrown down the gauntlet so convincingly to Ballyduff, the champions, to their credit, replied resoundingly.

Twice during an excellent first half parity existed as the teams traded points in delightful fashion to find themselves level at seven points a piece after 23 minutes play, and still locked in equality at 0-8 each five minutes later.

Fourmile’s commendable strides and scores flowed freely from Maurice O’Gorman, Martin and Shane Walsh, with O’Gorman registering the score of the game.

It must be added that Shane and Pa Kearney, along with the ever dependable Brendan Hannon kept the champions cause intact.

A brace of late first half points from Richard Fenton and Michael O’Gorman succeeded in putting the challengers 0-10 to 0-8 but on the stroke of half-time, Brendan Hannon got one back for the ‘reds’ to leave the minimum separating the teams.

Within 30 seconds of the restart, Brendan Hannon levelled from play , and it remained deadlocked as the sides went on to exchange points in as many minutes.

Then the champions hit a real purple patch during which four unanswered points left them four ahead by the 41st minute and well poised for victory.

Still Fourmilewater stayed firmly with their task and as the game entered its concluding stages the four points differential was maintained.

Richard Fenton had raised the challengers’ hopes again with a mighty score and just a minute later, Stephen Molumphy provided an inch perfect pass to substitute Sean Cunningham, who first time the ball to the challengers net for the game’s clinching goal.

But Fourmile kept the collective head up, with a converted ‘65′ by Brian Wall and two super points in the 58th and 59th minutes to leave just a goal between the teams.

But perhaps fittingly the champions closed their account in the dying seconds with a well- taken Seamus Hannon point to emerge narrow but deserving four-point winners at the final whistle.

Ballyduff Upper: Adrian Power, Patrick Molumphy, Tom Molumphy, Michael Drislane, John Twomey, Tom Feeney, Ger Feeney, Seamus Hannon, Stephen Molumphy, Kenneth Geary, Shane Kearney, Jamie Kearney, Pa Kearney, Brian Kearney, Brendan Hannon.

Sub: Sean Cunningham for P Kearney.

Scorers: Brendan Hannon (0-10; 0-8 frees), Sean Cunningham (1-00, Shane and Pa Kearney (0-2 each), Brian Kearney and Kenneth Geary (0-1 each).

Fourmilewater: Conor Ryan, John Moore, Liam Lawlor, Liam Walsh, Paul Horkin, Brian Wall, Rory Rice, Shane Walsh, Maurice O’Gorman, Alan Lawlor, Martin Walsh, Michael O’Gorman, Declan Spellman, Richard Fenton, Seamus Lawlor.

Subs: Thomas O’Gorman for A Lawlor, Diarmuid Wall for Michael O’Gorman, Thomas Walsh for D Spellman and Craig Guiry for R Fenton.

Scorers: Richard Fenton 0-7 (0-6 frees), Seamus Lawlor and Thomas Walsh (0-2 each), Martin Walsh, Maurice O’Gorman, Shane Walsh, Michael O’Gorman, and Brian Wall (0-1 each).

Referee: Tommy O’Sullivan (Cappoquin).

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