United retain Munster Cup

Munster Champions: the Waterford United players celebrate with the cup at the RSC.

Munster Champions: the Waterford United players celebrate with the cup at the RSC.

Waterford United 3; Midleton 1

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Waterford United retained the Munster Senior Cup on Thursday night last when they easily accounted for Munster Senior League outfit Midleton at the RSC.

It’s the third time in four years that United have won the famous trophy that was first played for way back in 1923. In 2007 the Blues defeated Passage West and last season they overcame Rockmount in the decider in Turners Cross. The other years that the cup found a home in Waterford were 1935, 1946, 1948, 1956, 1957, 1966, 1967, 1976, 1981, 1986, 1987.

The team which celebrated on Thursday last showed five changes from the one which hammered Salthill Devon 8-0 two days previously at the same venue. In came John Hayes, Gary Keane, Gary Dunphy, David Grincell and Timmy Purcell. Those to make way were the four-goal hero against the Galwaymen, Vinny Sullivan, along with Paul McCarthy, Willie John Kiely, Seamus Long and Kevin Waters – although McCarthy, Kiely and Long did come on during the course of the game.

As has been the norm in this competition, the side was managed by first-team coach Martin Cambridge as manager Stephen Henderson preferred to take a back seat. The healthy attendance expected another goal feast following the Devon demolition and when David Grincell scored twice within the opening 12 minutes another cricket score looked on the cards. However, a dogged Midleton side dug deep to prevent the hosts from registering another large total.

This game brought the curtain down on the first half of the season and Waterford’s next game will not be played until Friday, June 25th when Mervue United come to the RSC in the First Division.

Grincell brace

Midleton were put on the back foot from the opening whistle and Gary Dunphy went close for Waterford after three minutes with a shot from the edge of the penalty area after Killian Flavin had lost possession.

Grincell did open the scoring however on nine minutes. Kevin Murray played a superb ball from the right side of the penalty area after taking a pass from John Kearney and when the skipper crossed to the back post Grincell was lurking with intent and he cracked the ball to the roof of the net.

He struck once again three minutes later, this time running on to a wonderful through ball from Timmy Purcell before controlling and firing past goalkeeper Adrian O’Donovan from inside the penalty area.

Grincell provided a delightful ball for Timmy Purcell on 20 minutes when he crossed from the right but Purcell was just off target with his effort from 18 yards.

‘Grinny’ was causing all sorts of problems for the Midleton defence and he was back in the thick of the action once again just before half-time, playing the ball forward to Gary Keane whose effort with his back to goal went inches wide.

See The Munster Express newspaper for full match report.

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