COUNTY SENIOR HURLING CHAMPIONSHIP
Roanmore 1-18 Fourmilewater 2-9
Tony Ryan Reports
Having viewed this very capable display by Roanmore against Fourmilewater at a freezing Fraher Field last Saturday evening, the mind boggles as to how they went under to Mt. Sion by 3-17 to 0-13 in their first round game.On this performance Roanmore looked as if they would trouble any team and as well as their given normal spirited and determined approach, the city side played some very impressive hurling, especially in the distribution of the sliotar to their forward division.Playing with the strong wind, Roanmore dominated from the off and they led by 0-8 to 0-2 by the 27th minute before a Jamie Barron penalty goal kept Fourmilewater someway in touch approaching half time.
Billy Nolan was on fire from the start in this encounter and his three first half points from play were out of the top drawer. Jamie Barron, one of the few Fourmile players to perform, opened the scoring from a pointed free after just 38 seconds before Emmet O Toole, who also showed he knew where the posts were positioned, levelled inside the minute.Wearing number 6 but playing further out the field Billy Nolan struck two points of a high quality from play by the fifth minute as Roanmore assumed their match long control on the scoreboard.
Gavin O Brien pointed two frees, Daniel Murphy chipped in with his usual score and Shane Mackey struck over a contender for score of the match, 0-7 to 0-1.
All of this transpired despite Roanmore suffering two bad early injuries to both Colm Burke and Chris Dempsey.
This showed the depth in the panel of the winners with Dean Reidy and Brian Cooke coming off the bench and playing their part in the eventual victory.Fourmilewater’s first score in 22 minutes came from a Jamie Barron free, replied to immediately by Emmet O’ Toole.Fourmile received a badly required boost when Conor Gleeson was upended in front of the town goal and Jamie Barron finished the sliotar to the net in style, 0-8 to 1-2 and twenty seven minutes on the clock.Shane Walsh, who wasn’t fed enough of the ball throughout, punished a poor puck out with a 29th minute point but Jamie Barron was wide with a scoreable free which would have narrowed the gap further,
Four minutes of added time were played and it was during this that Roanmore answered the threat to their lead in style. Points per Billy Nolan, Gavin O Brien(f) and new to the grade Cian Wadding with a stylish effort, left the scoreboard reading 0-11 to 1-3 before a long distant Tom Barron pointed free for Fourmilewater brought the half to a close, 0-11 to 1-4.The Westerners played their best hurling at the start of the second half and they drew level by the 38th minute at 0-12 to 1-9 by scoring five of the first six scores. Jamie Barron was the key playmaker and he scored 0-4(2f) with Seamus Lawlor also finding the target.Roanmore’s only score was a Gavin O Brien pointed free but one expected that the sky blues were not going to lie down and indeed they responded in style. Jamie Barron was wide with a ‘65’ and the winners claimed the next five scores between the 41st and the 50th minute.
Sub Brian Cooke and Gavin O Brien, from play, restored Roanmore’s lead.Billy Nolan popped over his fourth minor and then came the defining flag of the day when Emmet O’ Toole emphatically finished a good move to the net in the 47th minute to leave the scoreboard reading 1-15 to 1-9.Billy Nolan added a pointed free two minutes later and then came the score of the match when Shane Mackey pointed after superb team work by Billy Nolan, Gavin O Brien and Daniel Murphy, 1-17 to 1-9.Roanmore’s distribution to their forwards was out of the top drawer, resulting in scores that drew their team well clear of their opponents.
With time moving on, Shane Walsh showed that the tactic of playing the ball into him match long would have worked when he goaled in the 58th minute and now there was just 0-5 the difference at 1-17 to 2-9. Three minutes of added time were announced and Brian Cooke, who was putting his name in the pot for a starting position the next day, hit over his second score since coming off the bench.Next up for the winners is a good test against Abbeyside while Fourmilewater will play Mt. Sion.