ESB Munster Minor Football Championship Final – Cork 1-8 Kerry 1-7

Cork defeated Kerry by 1-8 to 1-7 in the ESB Munster Minor Football Championship Final on Sunday in Fitzgerald Stadium, Killarney.

Hurley the hero for Cork

Cork 1-8 Kerry 1-7

By Fintan O’Toole for the Irish Examiner newspaper

Monday, July 05, 2010

A touch of scoring class from Cork corner-forward Brian Hurley was the crucial intervention in deciding yesterday’s ESB Munster MFC final in Fitzgerald Stadium, Killarney. With three minutes left, Cork were looking devoid of inspiration when captain Daniel Fitzgerald, who made his first appearance of an injury- plagued season as a second-half substitute, gathered a high ball and did brilliantly to offload to Hurley. The Castlehaven player initially feinted to fire a drive from a tight angle but after seeing Kerry netminder Pádraic McCarthy dive, Hurley produced a delightful chip with his left foot and the ball dropped to the net.

It was a sublime strike which finally settle a largely mundane encounter. Cork soaked up a barrage of late attacks from their opponents and while Kerry had grounds for complaint with referee Keith O’Brien’s decision to award a free out for over-carrying as substitute Tadhg Morley burst forward, it was Cork who kept their nerve. “A great way to win it,” remarked Cork manager Brian Cuthbert after the dramatic conclusion. “We got the break and Brian Hurley’s finish was unbelievable. Our defence was very good as well and I think Damian Cahalane is going to make a name for himself in the future. He did a great job today and we’ll look forward to facing Armagh or Tyrone.”

The match winner Hurley, who supplied a hefty 1-6 out of Cork’s overall 1-8 total, attributed the plaudits elsewhere after the game. “Daniel Fitzgerald, who’s a great captain, got free off his man, I peeled off mine and got it off him. I dinked it and luckily it went into the back of the net. But it’s not my perform- ance, the whole team worked hard to beat Kerry today.” It was fitting that Hurley should fire the match-winning strike as he had shouldered the scoring burden for Cork for long stretches.

Cork faced into a first-half wind that ruled out clean shooting, yet Hurley’s freetaking was still spot on and in the second-half he scored some terrific points. The Castlehaven influence on Cork’s victory extended beyond Hurley as Cahalane was in marvellous form at full-back. Brian Cuthbert’s decision to pull Cahalane back to a defensive role reaped a massive dividend as he stymied the threat of Gavin O’Grady, who had torn Limerick to shreds at the semi-final stage. Elsewhere Cork overcame an opening-half of anxiety to improve in the second-half with Tomás Clancy resolute in defence, Jamie Burns strong at midfield and Kevin Hallissey impressing in attack.

The loss of Glenbeigh/Glencar defender Pa Kilkenny after only six minutes to injury was a serious blow to Kerry. Robbed of their best man-marker, Kerry were unable to halt the scoring charge of Hurley. They also endured difficulties at midfield early on where Burns and John O’Rourke established a foothold but Cork lacked the guile and direction to forge ahead on the scoreboard in the first-half. The scoring was limited in the opening 30 minutes with Kerry just edging ahead 0-4 to 0-3, with Eanna O’Connor the star of the show from open play and placed ball. Captain James Walsh fired over a stunning shot from distance before the break and Kerry started the second-half in a commanding fashion.

They seemed to have taken a real grip on the game when Mark Reen burrowed through to slip a shot to the net in the 38th minute but Cork fought back and only trailed 1-6 to 0-8 with seven minutes left. Then came a vital incident when Cork goalkeeper David Hanrahan denied O’Connor a goal from point-blank range and from the rebound Kerry had a goal disallowed after it was adjudged that Morley had stepped out over the endline in possession. The miss proved costly when Hurley pounced for the late goal that consigned Kerry to defeat yet manager Pat O’Driscoll vowed they would revive their challenge for the All-Ireland series. “It’s a tough way to lose at the finish as I thought we’d hold out, since we were defending well. It was always going to be very close but I felt the referee made a few terrible decisions against us towards the end. But look there’s another day there and these lads aren’t finished yet.”

Scorers for Cork: B Hurley 1-6 (0-4f), K Sheehan (1f), K Hallissey 0-1 each.

Scorers for Kerry: M Reen 1-1, E O’Connor 0-4 (0-2f), G O’Grady, J Walsh 0-1 each.

Subs for Cork: D Fitzgerald for Ryan (44), D McEoin for Duggan (50), S O’Mahony for Sugrue (50).

Subs for Kerry: A Thompson for Kilkenny (inj) (6), C O’Leary for Durrant (25), T Morley for Hickey (54).

Referee: Keith O’Brien (Tipperary)

Hurley stuns Kingdom with late strike to snatch glory for Rebels

Cork 1-8 Kerry 1-7

Munster Mfc Final

From the Irish Independent web site

Monday July 05 2010

A 58th-minute goal from brilliant corner-forward Brian Hurley was enough to snatch victory for Cork minors over champions Kerry at a windswept Fitzgerald Stadium, Killarney, yesterday. It was a fortunate goal but the finish was sublime by man-of-the-match Hurley, who finished with a personal haul of 1-6 as Cork reclaimed the title for the first time since 2007. It was a game that Cork just about deserved to win based on their first-half display, but Kerry fought back well against the wind and once Mark Reen hit a goal and a point in the opening 10 minutes of the second half, they moved four points clear and looked likely winners. However, Cork had the physical edge and with John O’Rourke, Jamie Burns and substitute Danny Fitzgerald refusing to wilt, they had Kerry on the back foot. Cork had exploded from the blocks in the opening half despite playing against a stiff wind and they should really have had Kerry on the canvas, but their first-half tally of eight wides tells the tale as the Kingdom went in 0-4 to 0-3 ahead at half-time.

Kerry had received an early body blow when they lost their best defender, corner-back Pa Kilkenny, to injury in the sixth minute and as a result Hurley tormented the Kerry rearguard. The game swung on a 54th-minute incident when Kerry had a Gavin O’Grady goal disallowed after it was deemed that Thomas Morley had stepped over the end line in giving the final pass. This gave Cork hope and, trailing by two points, Danny Fitzgerald gained possession close to the Kerry goal and passed to Hurley, who dinked the ball into the Kerry net to give his side victory by a single point.

Scorers — Cork: B Hurley 1-6 ( 0-4f), K Sheehan (0-1f), K Hallissey 0-1each Kerry: E O’Connor 0-4 ( 0-2f), M Reen 1-1, J Walsh, G O’Grady 0-1 each.

Cork — D Hanrahan; K Fulignati , D Cahalane, D Murphy; S Ryan, T Clancy, J Wall; J Burns, J O’Rourke; K Hallissey, M Sugrue, A Cronin; K Sheehan, S Duggan, B Hurley Subs: D Fitzgerald for S Ryan (45), D McEoin for M Sugrue, S O’Mahony for S Duggan ( 50).

Kerry — P McCarthy; P Kilkenny, D Culhane, F McNamara; J Walsh, L Bastible, J Hickson; D Somers, G Durant; M Reen, T Hickey, G O’Leary; B O’Dwyer, G O’Grady, E O’Connor Subs: A Thompson for P Kilkenny (6), C O’Leary for G Durant ( 25), T Morley for T Hickey ( 51).

Ref — K O’Brien (Tipperary)

Team News

On the Kerry team, Barry Dwyer from Waterville comes in to the full forward line to replace Seán Keane who is injured. There are two new faces to the panel since the team played Limerick: Seán McCarthy Legion and Marcus Mangan from Milltown/Castlemaine.

The Kerry team to play Cork in The Munster Minor Football Final on Sunday next is as follows:

1 Padraic McCarthy Rathmore,

2 Pa Kilkenny Glenbeigh/Glencar 3 David Culhane Ballylongford 4 Fearghal McNamara Austin Stacks

5 James Walsh Knocknagoshel (captain) 6 Laurance Bastible John Mitchel’s, 7 Jason Hickson Annascaul

8 Damien Somers St Senan’s 9 George Durrant Dingle 10 Mark Reen Rathmore 11 Thomas Hickey Desmonds 12 Gary O’Leary Kilcummin

13 Barry Dwyer Waterville 14 Gavan O’Grady Glenbeigh/Glencar 15 Éanna O’Connor St Michaels Foilmore

16 Damien Horgan St. Marys Caherciveen 17 John Moynihan Rathmore 18 Chris O’Leary Kilcummin

19 Tadhg Morley Templenoe 20 Sean McCarthy Legion 21 Conor Cox Listowel Emmets

22 Andrew Thompson Kerins O’Rahillys 23 Marcus Mangan Milltown/Castlemaine 24 Padraig Boyle Ballyduff