Munster JFC S-Final – Clare vs. Limerick

Clare defeated Limerick by 0-13 to 1-7 in the Munster Junior Football Championship Semi-Final on Sunday in Cusack Park Ennis.

Fixture Details

Munster GAA Junior Football Championship Semi Final
An Clár v Luimneach at 2.00p.m.
At Cusack Park Ennis
Reiteoir – Pat Sheehy (Ciarraí)

Munster JFC S-Final – Kerry vs. Cork

Cork defeated Kerry by 3-10 to 0-9 in the Munster Junior Football Championship Semi-Final on Sunday at Fitzgerald Stadium Killarney.


Rebel goals the difference

Kerry 0-09 Cork 3-10

By Fintan O’Toole for the Irish Examiner newspaper

Monday, June 08, 2009

CORK conjured up a dominant second-half display that saw them home with plenty to spare in yesterday’s Munster JFC semi-final in Fitzgerald Stadium in Killarney.

Cork’s ability to strike for goals left them in good health throughout the tie. Fiachra Lynch smacked a fine left-foot finish to the net in the seventh-minute to propel them into an early lead and it acted as the separating margin at the interval, as they held a 1-3 to 0-4 advantage.

Kerry midfielder Andrew Garnett launched over the opening score of the second-half, but Lynch pounced for a critical goal again in the 33rd minute. The score had a twin effect of emboldening Cork for the remainder of the match and hampering Kerry’s hopes of a recovery.

Cork have become masters at this grade in recent times under the tutelage of coach Mossie Barrett and this match illustrated that they have assembled a strong side again. In defence Enda Wiseman, Richard O’Sullivan and Anthony Fenton gave expert performances, and the only time Kerry threatened the Cork goal was in the 15th minute when Paddy O’Shea brilliantly denied Michael O’Donoghue. At midfield Andrew O’Sullivan and Chris O’Donovan got a strong early foothold in the game, with O’Sullivan also finding time to canter forward for three points.

In attack Lynch was the game-breaker, with Vincent Hurley offering a viable outlet close to goal. A John Paul Murphy free in the 18th minute put Cork 1-3 to 0-2 in front, yet Kerry rallied with good points by O’Donoghue and Paddy Curtin. Garnett’s score after half-time raised Kerry’s hopes but they were left cold when Lynch struck his second goal.

Cork kicked on from there rattling off an impressive sequence of five points with Lynch and O’Sullivan central to that spree. Their best score came in the 46th minute when a flowing team move that started with Richard O’Sullivan in defence culminated in Daniel O’Donovan’s perceptive pass being finished off by substitute Paudie Cahill.

With a nine-point advantage in their possession with 12 minutes left, Cork had essentially booked their passage in the provincial final.

Cork rounded off the game in injury-time; Lynch momentarily looked on the cusp of a hat-trick but after his shot was blocked, Michael Murphy was on hand to shoot clinically to the net.

Scorers: Cork: F Lynch 2-3 (0-1f), M Murphy 1-0, A O’Sullivan 0-3, V Hurley 0-2, JP Murphy (0-1f), P Cahill 0-1 each.

Kerry: M O’Donoghue 0-3 (0-1f), P Curtin 0-2, A Garnett, N Mahony, D O’Callaghan, G O’Driscoll 0-1 each.

CORK: P O’Shea; P Gayer, E Wiseman, M Prout; R O’Sullivan, A Fenton, M Fehilly; A O’Sullivan, C O’Donovan; D O’Donovan, C Keane, C O’Driscoll; V Hurley, F Lynch, JP Murphy. Subs: P Cahill for Murphy (41), N O’Riordan for Hurley (53), M Murphy for Keane (53), K O’Brien for O’Donovan (63)

KERRY: S Óg O’Ciardubháin; W O’Sullivan, E Hickson, B Maguire; S Enright, F Griffin, J King; A Garnett, A O’Sullivan; P O’Connell, N Mahony, G O’Driscoll; D O’Callaghan, M O’Donoghue, P Curtin. Subs: D Doyle for Hickson (42), G Sayers for O’Connell (47), N Fleming for O’Callaghan (51).

Referee: Maurice Condon (Waterford)


Munster GAA Junior Football Championship Semi Final
Ciarraí v Corcaigh at 12noon
At Fitzgerald Stadium Killarney
Reiteoir – Maurice Condon (Port Láirge)

Team News

Cork (SF v Kerry) – Paddy O’Shea (St Vincents); Pat Gayer (Castlemagnier), Enda Wiseman (Castletownbere), Michael Prout (Shamrocks); Richard O’ Sullivan (Kinsale), Anthony Fenton (St Vincents),  Michael Fehily (Diarmuid O Mathunas); Andrew O’ Sullivan (Castletownbere), Chris O’ Donovan (Valley Rovers); Daniel O’ Donovan (Kilmacabee), Cathrach Keane (Newcestown), Colm O’ Driscoll (Thadgh Mac Cartaigh); Vincent Hurley (Courcey Rovers ), Fiachra Lynch (Valley Rovers), John Paul Murphy (St Vincents)
Subs: Pat White (Newcestown), John Macloughlin (Kanturk),  Gerry Healy (Ballydesmond), Noel O’ Riordan (Glenville), Colm O’ Connell (Killavullen), Paudie Cahill (Glenville), Michael Murphy (Ballinora), Kevin O’Brien (Ballincurra), Ciaran Sheehan (Eire Og)

Kerry (SF v Cork) – Seán Óg Ó Ciardubháin (Cordal); Wayne Sullivan (Skellig Rangers – Captain), Eamon Hickson (Annascaul), Brian Maguire (Listowel Emmetts); Shane Enright (Tarbert), Fergal Griffin (Glenbeigh/Glencar), Jeremy King (Beale); Andrew Garnet (Spa), Alan O’Sullivan (Tuosist); Paddy O’Connell (Tarbert), Niall Mahony (Spa), Gary O’Driscoll (Skellig Rangers); David O’Callaghan (St Pats Blennerville),  Mike O’Donoghue (Spa), Patrick Curtin (Moyvane)
Subs: Michael Moriarty ( Beaufort), Brendan Browne (Beale), John O’Brien (Duagh), Pa McCarthy (Currow), Kieran O’Connor (Listowel Emmets) , Gary Sayers (Keel), Daniel Doyle (Churchill), Niall Fleming (Ballydesmond), Conor Daly (Churchill)

Christy Ring Cup Hurling Semi-Final – Kerry vs. Carlow

Kerry drew with Carlow after extra time in the Christy Ring Cup Senior Hurling Championship Semi-Final on Saturday at Dr. Cullen Park Carlow on a scoreline of Kerry 2-12 Carlow 1-15.


Christy Ring Cup Round-Up

Carlow 1-15 Kerry 2-12

From the GAA.ie web site

Saturday, May 6

Kerry and Carlow produced a thrilling encounter in Dr Cullen Park but failed to produce a winner while Down trounced Mayo.

Down, meanwhile, had an easy win over Mayo and await the winner of the replay in the other semi-final.

Kerry produced a superb display to snatch a draw against Carlow in a thrilling Christy Ring Cup clash at rain soaked Dr Cullen Park on Saturday afternoon.

Kerry trailed by three points in the final minute of normal time, but John Mike Dooley sent the game to extra-time when he volleyed Shane Brick’s free to the back of the net.

The sides shared four points equally in the two ten-minute periods of extra-time and the both teams will have to meet again to see who will face Down in the final.

Kerry led 1-5 to 1-4 at the break, but they were facing into a strong wind in the second half. Inevitably, Carlow came haring out of the blocks and scored four points without reply to assume control.

Midfielder James Hickey levelled the game 45 seconds into the second half before Paudie Kehoe added a free to give the Barrowsiders the lead.

Aidan Healy, the Kerry goalkeeper, denied Robbie Foley of a certain goal chance when he deflected the ball out for a ’65. Shane Kavanagh put resultant placed ball over the bar before Foley added another point.

Kehoe sent Carlow even further ahead, but Kerry hit a purple patch and came back into the game with a Shane Brick free and a superb long-range point by JM Dooley.

However, Kehoe pegged the Kingdom back again with another free before Mossie Carroll’s men hit three points in a row to level the game at 1-10 apiece after 20 minutes.

Shane Brick hit two of those points from placed balls before substitute Gary O’Brien forced the ball over the bar after a pass from Tipperary native Evan Sweeney.

Carlow then hit three points without reply and looked to be strolling to into the Christy Ring Cup final.

However, Brick shocked the Dr Cullen Park faithful when he struck a brilliant free from 30 yards and goal poacher supreme JM Dooley applied the finishing touch to level the game at 2-10 to 1-13 in the last minute.

Kavanagh, the Carlow full-back, did have a chance to win the game with the last puck of the match, but his ’65 drifted wide and the referee indicated that the game would go to extra time.

James Hickey opened the scoring for Carlow in the first period of extra-time before Evan Sweeney levelled the game again after great work by Gary O’Brien.

The sides traded points in the second ten-minute period of extra-time but a brilliant defensive display from the Kingdom when their backs were to the wall ensured the game went to a replay.


Rock solid Brick earns battling Kingdom another shot at Carlow

Carlow 1-15 Kerry 2-12

By Daragh O Conchúir

http://www.irishexaminer.com/sport/rock-solid-brick-earns-battling-kingdom-another-shot-at-carlow-93573.html

Monday, June 08, 2009

KERRY produced a gutsy performance to bring this Christy Ring Cup semi-final to a replay, after 80 minutes of wholehearted endeavour against champions Carlow at Dr Cullen Park.

The hosts opened up four-point leads early in both halves, and edged ahead in extra time, but on every occasion Kerry dug deep to claw themselves back into contention. Shane Brick’s point a minute from the end of extra time was the score that earned Mossie Carroll’s side a deserved second bit of the cherry.

“I’m absolutely delighted,” said Carroll. “We are here in the home of the All-Ireland champions on a dreadful day; we gave them 1-1 of a start and came back through pure heart and determination to draw level after 70 minutes. We had to go out for another 20 and we stepped up to the mark again to get an impressive draw.

“Our hurling is a lot better than we showed today. This was a pure exercise in guts, heart and determination.”

Carlow boss Kevin Ryan was nowhere near as upbeat about his side’s efforts.
“We were disappointed not to win it in normal time but in extra time nobody deserved to lose it. We created a lot of chances in the first half but shot simple wides and the work rate wasn’t as it should have been in the half-forward line.

“You talk about plans and patterns and everything else in hurling but when you get into an extra time situation it’s just a bit of guts and a bit of character – and we know we have that.”

Carlow had the perfect start with a goal from Paudie Kehoe after Kerry goalkeeper John Healy denied Craig Doyle. Brick hit back with a clinical penalty finish, after the hugely influential John McCarthy had been hauled down by Des Shaw, to give the visitors a 1-5 to 1-4 interval lead.

Carlow moved up a gear after the resumption and held a three-point lead with time running out. Their forward line was not functioning with its normal fluidity however and they had good reason to be thankful for Kehoe’s accuracy from frees, full-back Shane Kavanagh’s two converted 65s and midfielder James Hickey’s eye for a score.

Aidan Healy and Tom Murnane were magnificent in the Kerry defence though, keeping their side in the mix.

It looked like their brilliant efforts would be in vain but when Brick’s driven 30m free was blocked on the line in the dying seconds of normal time, John Mike Dooley swooping to knock the rebound to the net to make it 1-13 to 2-10.

Extra time proved a dogfight in atrocious weather that caused numerous handling errors but a endless supply of courage was in evidence from both teams. Hickey shot his fourth point from play to put Carlow ahead but former Tipperary attacker Evan Sweeney levelled once again. Substitute Robbie Foley restored the home side’s advantage in the 83rd minute but Brick profited from strong work by Gary O’Brien to bring the tie to a replay with less than two minutes remaining.

CARLOW: F Foley; W Hickey, S Kavanagh 0-2(65s), D Shaw; E Coady, J Rodgers, R Coady; J Hickey 0-4(1 sideline), D Roberts; A Gaule, C Doyle, M Brennan 0-1; R Dunbar, C Hughes, Paudie Kehoe 1-6(0-6fs).

Subs: R Foley 0-2 for Dunbar (ht); D Byrne for Gaule, blood (44-46); E Byrne for Hughes (62); Byrne for Gaule (62); Paul Kehoe for Shaw blood (79-80); Dunbar for Roberts (84)

KERRY: J Healy; P O’Grady, A Healy, C Harris; J Casey, T Murnane, J Godley; E Sheehy, J Griffin; E Sweeney 0-2, S Brick 1-5(1-0 pen, 0-3fs), B Brick 0-1; S Young, J McCarthy, JM Dooley 1-3.

Sub: G O’Brien 0-1 for Young (55); M Hannifin for Harris (85) inj; J Fitzgerald for Sheehy (85)

Referee: T Carroll (Offaly)


Kerry Team to play Carlow on Saturday 6th June in The Christy Ring Cup Semi Finals is as follows:

1.John Healy Ballyheigue 2. Padraig O’Grady Ballyduff 3.Aidan Healy O’Dorney 4.Colin Harris Kilmoyley 5. Jason Casey Ballyheigue 6 Tom Murnane Kilmoyley(Capt) 7.James Godley Kilmoyley 8.Eoin Sheehy Kilmoyley 9.John Griffin,Lixnaw 10.Evan Sweeney Loughmore Castleiney 11.Shane Brick Kilmoyley 12. Billy Brick Kilmoyley 13.Sean Young Kilmoyley 14.James McCarthy Kilmoyley 15.John Mike Dooley Causeway
Subs: 16. Shane Nolan Crotta O’Neills 17. John Fitzgerald Causeway 18. Mike Hanifin O’Dorney 19. Eamon Fitzgerald Causeway 20. Gary O’Brien Ballyduff 21.Padraig Maunson Causeway 22. Adrain Ryle Kilmoyley 23. Brian O’Leary O’Dorney 24.Sean Maunsell Kilmoyley 25. Paudie Moriarty Ballyheigue

Munster SFC Semi-Final – Kerry vs. Cork

Kerry drew with Cork in the Munster GAA Senior Football Championship semi final at Fitzgerald Stadium, Killarney on Sunday on a scoreline of Kerry 0-13 Cork 1-10.

Cork led at the interval by 1-5 to 0-6 thanks to a goal from Pearse O’Neill in the 12th minute. Cork extended their lead to 5 points in the second half before a late comeback by Kerry brought them level thanks to an injury time free by Bryan Sheehan.

The replay is fixed for next Saturday evening June 13th at 5:00pm in Pairc Ui Chaoimh.


Opportunity missed as Rebels fail to finish off Kingdom

Kerry 0-13 Cork 1-10

By Jim O’Sullivan of the Irish Examiner newspaper

Monday, June 08, 2009

AFTER this dramatic finale to yesterday’s Munster football championship semi-final in Fitzgerald Stadium – when a Bryan Sheehan free earned Kerry a replay in the third minute of injury time – the big question supporters from both sides were asking themselves was how holders Cork failed to win a game they dominated for long periods.

The answer was that they failed to drive home their advantage when they were in control against the home side which was hit by an early ankle injury to Tommy Walsh and which struggled to find its rhythm until the final quarter.

Ultimately the visitors were almost powerless to halt the momentum built up by a re-energised Kerry, who drew inspiration from two particular points from Tadhg Kennelly and Sheehan (his only one from play) before Colm Cooper levelled scores for the second of only three times in the 67th minute.

With captain Graham Canty showing the way with a fisted point after 15 seconds, Cork settled very quickly and added another score before Tommy Walsh opened the Kerry account in the eighth minute.

Interestingly, with the Kerry attack and the Cork defence being slightly rearranged (Kieran O’Connor was a late replacement on the Cork side for Ray Carey, operating at left-half), it was the visitors who achieved most in terms of efficiency. The net effect was that Kerry weren’t threatening very much and that further alterations following Walsh’s departure didn’t achieve any worthwhile improvement.

From Cork’s perspective, it was a good news story all the way forward, with the exception of James Masters, who started in the left corner (on Tom O’Sullivan) and hardly saw the ball before being replaced by Michael Cullen – who, in time, was to more than justify his introduction.

Cork were much more successful around the middle of the field, where Kerry’s Tadhg Kennelly started promisingly in his debut game but made little enough impact after moving to wing-forward after Darragh O Se was brought on for Tommy Walsh. Alan O’Connor in particular impressed for Cork, and benefiting from strong support from the half-backs, Pearse O’Neill was to prove very effective at centre-forward.

It was O’Neill who scored the game’s only goal in the 12th minute, finishing with a powerful shot after being put through by Paul Kerrigan, who did some outstanding work on the left flank of the attack.

However, two minutes earlier, Kerry had the opportunity to put the ball in the net, but Donncha Walsh opted for a point when Cooper was free. Cork, likewise, passed up an even better chance immediately after O’Neill had scored, when Daniel Goulding also elected to put the ball over instead of taking on the goalkeeper.

Worst of all from Kerry’s perspective, was a missed penalty in the 23rd minute, when Cooper made a very poor attempt at scoring after Ger Spillane had fouled Darran O’Sullivan.

Even though Darragh O Se was quick to make an impact, Kerry’s finishing was weak and at times the quality of ball delivered into the inside players was poor. But, this was also a tribute to the work of the Cork defence, with Shields commanding at full-back and Anthony Lynch very consistent. And, to be fair to the Kerry backs, they were also more involved in the second quarter, with Marc O Se doing some good work along with brother Tomás.

At the break, it was 1-5 to 0-5 for Cork.

The pattern of the game didn’t change much over the course of the third quarter, with Darran O’Sullivan failing from an early 45, before he was off the field temporarily after a nose-bleed before being eventually replaced.

Not surprisingly, after having been brought in as a blood sub, Bryan Sheehan was retained (at full-forward), hitting over the first of his five scores in the 44th minute.

Confident Cork were still forcing the pace, being boosted by a point from substitute Noel O’Leary in the 36th minute. Conversely, Kerry were still at odds with their shooting – Darragh O Se ballooned a ball wide and there were later bad misses from Sheehan and Galvin – and they seemed to be in trouble when a fine score from O’Neill had Cork five points clear with 15 minutes remaining.

However, after what was the biggest margin up to then, the game started to move in Kerry’s direction, stemming in the main from a virtual monopoly of possession gained at midfield. Kennelly was more assertive, Darragh O Se was dominant and, the benefit of having a reliable free-taker on the field in the person of Sheehan was to prove crucial.

Tomás O Se was seen at his best, defending strongly and powering his way forward several times and substitute David Moran quickly started to contribute, just as he had done in similar fashion against the Rebels in Croke Park last year.

After a Sheehan free in the 59th minute, Kennelly and Sheehan put over two inspirational points which lifted the Kingdom. And after another Sheehan free (won by Moran), Cooper put over a super point under pressure from several defenders, after having first lost his footing.

That levelled the scores and as a replay loomed, U21 star Colm O’Neill regained the lead for Cork from a ‘45. With time running out, it looked all over from Kerry, but a foul on Tomás O Se around the 50-yard line and an unwise intervention by O’Leary which saw the ball being advanced to a more favourable position produced an equaliser from Sheehan.

Scorers for Kerry: B. Sheehan 0-5 (0-3 frees, 0-1 ‘45); C. Cooper 0-3 (0-1 free); D. Walsh 0-2; T. Walsh, D. O Se and T. Kennelly 0-1 each.

Scorers for Cork: P. O’Neill 1-2; D. O’Connor 0-3 frees; D. Goulding 0-2; G. Canty, N. O’Leary and C. O’Neill 0-1 each.

Subs for Kerry: D. O Se for T. Walsh (injured, 11); B. Sheehan for D. Walsh (48); D. Moran for Quirke (50); B.J. Walsh for Darran O’Sullivan (58); S. O’Sullivan for Kennelly (70).

Subs for Cork: M. Cussen for Masters (26); N O’Leary for Spillane (32); N. O’Donovan for Miskella (45); B. O’Regan for K. O’Connor (62); C. O’Neill for Goulding (65).

Referee: M. Deegan (Laois).

* Attendance: 32,204 (last year 22,784 – final, Páirc Uí Chaoimh).

* A minute’s silence was observed in memory of former Kerry minor and U21 player Jimmy Falvey, who died recently.


Kerry revival forces replay

From the Irish Times newspaper

Kerry 0-13 Cork 1-10: For the guts of an hour in Killarney it looked like Cork were destined for another Munster final appearance but a storming last quarter from Kerry, led by substitute Brian Sheehan, ensured there was no winner in the latest duel between the old enemies who will have to meet again to write another chapter in their rivalry.

Cork’s smothering defence and a timely goal from Pearse O’Neill had ensured control of the game by the break and their three point lead was stretched to five in the second half.

There looked no way back for a Kerry side that had misfired all afternoon and struggled to get a clear sight of goal, thanks largely to efforts of Michael Shields and Anthony Lynch in the Rebels full back line.

Sheehan, who was initially introduced as blood substitute for Darren O’Sullivan, then came on to score five points, including a pressure free at the death to take the game to a replay, set for next Saturday at Pairc Ui Chaoimh.

“We showed some battling qualities in the second half but we gave ourselves a mountain to climb,” said Kerry manager Jack O’Connor afterwards.

“I thought we were sluggish early on and Cork hit the ground running. They were all that we expected.They are a team that is full of running, they certainly have great legs all over the field and we;ve had to say they were a real handful.

“We’re happy enough to get out of here with a draw, we looked beaten half way through the second half.”

Limerick await the eventual victor in the final after a four-point win over Clare at Cusack Park later in the afternoon.

At Fitzgerald Stadium, Cork were hungrier from the off, winning a free from the throw-in which set Graham Canty scampering through the middle to fist over the bar and open the scoring.

A Donncha O’Callaghan free then doubled the lead as the Rebels set of at pace.

Nothing went right for Kerry early on. Cork defended from the front and the Kingdom initially had difficulty get the ball down the pitch, despite the best efforts of Paul Galvin.

When they did, Colm Cooper and Tommy Walsh failed to take early chances, but the latter eventually got them off the mark before Donnacha Walsh levelled the scores.

Kerry had to work hard for it though and after Tommy Walsh was forced off through injury, the onus was on Cooper. But the Gooch was misfiring under pressure from the excellent Lynch, whose brilliant block down of a Galvin effort typified Cork’s desire.

Worse still, was the arrival of a Cork goal immediately after Darragh O’Se’s introduction for Walsh. With Kerry seemingly distracted nobody had the legs or the wit to track Pearse O’Neill’s surging run and the centre forward latched on to Paul Kerrigan’s superbly timed hand-pass to make no mistake from close range.

Daniel Goulding then opted to fist over when a shot at goal looked on but the Cork lead was now four and Kerry looked short of ideas.

Tommy Griffin, though, was beginning to impose himself on the game and his bursts through middle caused problems for Cork and led directly to points from Michael Shields free and Dara O’Se.

With the gap reduced to two, Kerry were given the opportunity to take a lead they scarcely deserved when Marc O’Se’s brilliant run ended with a hand pass in the box to Darren O’Sullivan, who was clumsily pushed in the back by Ger Spillane.

Cooper stepped up to take the penalty, but again he shot badly wide and after the yellow-carded Spillane was replaced by Noel O’Leary, Donncha O’Connor put three points between the teams with another free for Cork.

Goulding was first to find his mark after the break, but Sheehan announced himself immediately after replacing Darren O’Sullivan.

Paddy Kelly then missed a golden opportunity to hit the net when he shot tamely past Diarmuid Murphy’s right hand post and Cooper finally lost Lynch to find his range with a quality point.

Back-to-back points from O’Connor and O’Neill, however, gave Cork a five-point lead, but it prompted Kerry into an unlikely fightback.

Sheehan grabbed his second before Tadhg Kennelly, quiet throughout, sent over a booming point to get the Kerry fans on their feet and signal a call to arms.

Sheehan answered it with one from play and then a free, before Cooper dug a point out of nowhere when being hounded by Lynch and Shields.

Former Cork under-21 star Cormac O’Sullivan looked to have won it when he kept his nerve to fire over a 45, minutes after coming on to the pitch, but Sheehan showed his bottle in injury time after a cheap free was given away by the Cork defence.

To be continued.

Kerry: D Murphy; M O’Se, T O’Sullivan, P Reidy; T O’Se, T Griffin, A O’Mahony; T Kennelly (0-1), M Quirke; Darren O’Sullivan, Donnacha Walsh (0-2), P Galvin; C Cooper (0-3, 1 free), Tommy Walsh (0-1), Declan O’Sullivan. Substitutes : Darragh O’Se (0-1) for T Walsh (11 mins inj.), B Sheehan (0-5, 4 frees) for Darren O’Sullivan, Darran O’Sullivan for D Walsh (48 mins), D Moran for M Quirke (48 mins), BJ Walsh for Darran O’Sullivan (57 mins inj.), S O’Sullivan for T Kennelly (70 mins).

Cork: A Quirke: J Miskella, M Shields, A Lynch; Kieran O’Connor, G Canty (0-1), G Spillane; A O’Connor, N Murphy; P Kelly, P O’Neill (1-2), P Kerrigan; D Goulding (0-2), J Masters, Donnacha O’Connor (0-3 frees). Substitutes : M Cussen for J Masters (25 mins), N O’Leary (0-1) for G Spillane (33 mins), N O’Donovan for J Miskella (44 mins), B O’ Regan for K O’Connor (62 mins), C O’Neill (0-1 50) for D Goulding (66 mins).

Referee: M Deegan (Laois)


Sheehan saves Kerry at the death

From the GAA.ie web site

Sunday, June 7

Bryan Sheehan’s free, seconds from the end of added time, saved Kerry’s blushes at Fitzgerald Stadium on Sunday afternoon after Colm O’Neill’s superb 45′ looked to have handed Conor Counihan’s Cork a famous victory in the Munster SFC semi-final.

Munster SFC Quarter-final:
Kerry 0-13 Cork 1-10

Sheehan’s task was aided by the Cork defenders who swarmed around the ball, leaving referee Maurice Deegan with no choice but to move what proved to be almost the last kick of the day closer to the Town goal.

The second-half substitute duly obliged to bring what was an entertaining encounter to a conclusion on a day when Jack O’Connor’s side looked out of sorts for large parts of the game.

Cork went in three points up at the break with Pearse O’Neill’s brilliant goal the difference between the sides.

The 2008 All-Ireland finalists and current league holders could have been on level terms but for the fact Colm ‘Gooch’ Cooper missed a penalty on 31 minutes.

Kerry lost Tommy Walsh through injury after just 11 minutes but he was ably replaced by Kerry legend, Darragh O’Sé.

The Gaeltacht midfielder made his presence felt not long after when he slotted over a lovely point after 28 minutes.

Cork relied on the freetaking ability of Donncha O’Connor and Daniel Goulding in the opening half as well as the dash of O’Neill to keep their noses in front.

The second half was six minutes old when Goulding slotted over the best point of the day to push the reigning Munster champions four points ahead.

In the next 20 minutes the sides exchanged some excellent scores as it looked increasingly like Kerry would need a goal to salvage a draw.

Noel O’Leary, with his hunched style, gave Cork a boost after 46 minutes with a fine point before normal service was resumed at the other end of the field, ‘Gooch’ swinging over a super score from out the field.

On 56 minutes, O’Neill, who was to end up with 1-2 to his name, made a barnstorming run up the field before pointing.

That score was quickly bettered by Tadhg Kennelly’s spectacular effort on 59 minutes to bring the gap back to three points.

However, the score of the day was yet to come. When it did arrive it was Cooper who supplied it. Under pressure from a number of tenacious Cork defenders, the ‘Gooch’ managed to swing a leg at the ball. It glided over the black spot and the sides were now level going into added time.

Up stepped substitute O’Neill who was nerveless in his execution of the 45′ but Sheehan, who scored a number of vital frees for the Kingdom after being sprung from the bench, was to have the last laugh.

Kerry: D Murphy; M Ó Sé, T O’Sullivan, P Reidy; T Ó Sé, T Griffin, A O’Mahony; T Kennelly, M Quirke; P Galvin, Declan O’Sullivan, D Walsh; C Cooper, T Walsh, Darren O’Sullivan [capt].

Subs used: D Ó Sé for T Walsh [11 mins, injured], B Sheehan for Darren O’Sullivan [40, blood sub], Darren O’Sullivan for D Walsh [49], D Moran for Quirke [50], BJ Walsh for Darren O’Sullivan [58], S O’Sullivan for Kennelly [70].

Cork: A Quirke; K O’Connor, M Shields, A Lynch; J Miskella, G Canty [capt], G Spillane; A O’Connor, N Murphy; P Kelly, P O’Neill, P Kerrigan; D Goulding, J Masters, D O’Connor.

Subs used: M Cussen for Masters [26 mins], N O’Leary for Spillane
[32], N O’Donovan for Miskella [45], B O’Regan for K O’Connor [62], C O’Neill for Goulding [65].

Scorers:

Kerry: B Sheehan 0-05 [4f], C Cooper 0-03 [1f], D Walsh 0-02, T Walsh, T Kennelly, D Ó Sé 0-01 each.
Cork: P O’Neill 1-02, D O’Connor 0-03 [3f], D Goulding 0-02, G
Canty, N O’Leary, C O’Neill [0-01 ’45’] 0-01 each.

Referee: Maurice Deegan [Laois].


O’Connor relieved Kerry are still alive

From the GAA.ie web site

Saturday, June 7

Kerry boss Jack O’Connor was a relieved man on Sunday evening.

The Kingdom, strong All-Ireland SFC favourites, scraped a draw against Cork in their Munster SFC semi-final joust in Killarney.

Kerry trailed by five with time ticking on in the second half, but showed class and character to come back and force a replay.

O’Connor told Setanta: “When Cork were five up halfway through the second half, it looked to be all over but in fairness to our fellows, they battled away.

“We pegged them back, point by point. [Bryan] Sheehan kicked a couple of great frees for us that kept us in it and we’re still there.

“We showed good battling qualities in the second half but we gave ourselves a mountain to climb. I thought we were sluggish early on – Cork hit the ground running and they were all that we expecteced: a big, athletic team full of running.

“They’ve great legs all over the field and you’d have to say they’re a real handful.”

Kerry must now travel to Páirc Uí Chaoimh on Saturday for the replay, but their manager is delighted rather than forlorn about this.
“That’s OK as well – the game is going to bring both teams on and if either team is to go the distance this year, games like today’s will be invaluable.

“We are happy enough to get out of here – we looked beaten halfway through the second half.”


Munster SFC: Cork let Kerry off the hook

From the Hogan Stand newspaper

07 June 2009

Cork and Kerry finished level in Killarney, but the Rebels will be kicking themselves after a late fade-out allowed the Kingdom back into the match.

Kerry were never ahead in this game and Pearse O’Neill’s first-half goal looked like it would prove decisive, but once they got a sniff of blood, Jack O’Connor’s charges battled back for a 0-13 to 1-10 draw.

The Leesiders were the better side for an hour but Kerry finished strongly and a run of five successive points between the 59th and 67th minutes handed them a lifeline. Cork went back in front deep into injury time but again Kerry wriggled off the hook with a late, late free from supersub Bryan Sheehan (0-5).

The first half went according to script for the visitors, who led by 1-5 to 0-5 at the interval. Pearse O’Neill blasted the goal in the twelfth minute, while The Gooch squandered a penalty with a terrible attempt at the other end.

Kerry, who were forced to start without Kieran Donaghy, also suffered a big blow when The Star’s replacement – Tommy Walsh – had to go off after just eleven minutes as his ankle problem flared up again. So Jack O’Connor had plenty of work to do at the break.

Captain Graham Canty got the Rebels off to a flying start with a fisted point at the end of a strong run from centre back after just a handful of seconds. Donncha O’Connor doubled the differential with a pointed free in the second minute.

Colm Cooper hit a surprising wide two minutes later when he eased past his man after being picked out by the purposeful Paul Galvin and Daniel Goulding also pulled a left-footed free badly wide at the other end in the sixth minute.

Tommy Walsh, who was clearly carrying an injury, added another poor Kerry wide and the No.14 finally opened the Kingdom’s account with a nicely-floated finish just into the uprights on eight minutes. Tommy Griffin surged forward to set up Donnacha Walsh and it was 0-2 each after ten minutes.

The hosts suffered a blow when Tommy Walsh had to be called ashore after just eleven minutes – but Darragh O Se is no bad replacement! The An Ghaeltacht clubman resumed his customary position in midfield, with Tadhg Kennelly moving into the forward ranks.

Within a minute of the substitution, Cork caught Kerry napping with what would prove the only goal of the game. Centre forward Pearse O’Neill broke clear of Griffin and sent a scorching low shot to the bottom corner of the net. Seconds later, Goulding added a fisted point when he fleetingly had the goal at his mercy – 1-3 to 0-2.

Ger Spillane and Galvin each saw yellow for an off-the-ball altercation, and the latter’s body language suggested that he was more sinned-against than sinner. Kerry were struggling to get scores: Cooper fired a free wide; a Galvin effort was blocked; and O Se dropped a shot short into the arms of grateful Rebel ‘keeper Alan Quirke.

Declan O’Sullivan also sent a Kerry shot wide on 20 minutes but Cooper then converted a free after a clear foul on captain Darren O’Sullivan.
O’Neill landed an impressive Cork point to restore the four-point cushion but Kerry quickly halved their leeway with points from Donnacha Walsh – this time off his left foot – and the irrepressible Darragh O Se, with an inspirational 28th-minute score.

The towering Michael Cussen was introduced for James Masters at full forward for Cork, but would have little impact on proceedings.

Then came the game’s first controversial moment: Darren O’Sullivan went to ground and was awarded a penalty, with Spillane adjudged to have pushed the No.15 in the back. Quirke got a yellow card for protesting, but could Spillane have seen a second card if he had shoved the Kerryman? Was it even a penalty? It mattered not in the end An out-of-sorts Cooper scuffed his kick badly and his tame attempt bobbled impotently to the right of the post and wide, like an oversized dice trying to roll up the side of a mountain.

Spillane was now walking a red-card tightrope and Rebel boss Conor Counihan wisely elected to replace him with the equally-robust Noel O’Leary. At the other end of the pitch, O’Connor maintained his 100% record from frees with a lovely right-footed finish from off the deck out wide on the left to make it 1-5 to 0-5 in favour of the holders.

Two minutes were added at the end of the first half but there were no further incidents of note as the Leesiders held a three-point cushion at the short interval.

The second half started as the first half had ended for Kerry with Cork’s Nicholas Murphy prominent in midfield and further wides accrued by Griffin and Darren O’Sullivan (from a 45).

In the 41st minute, Goulding brilliantly clipped over a point from an acute angle after wonderful assistance from O’Connor. Declan O’Sullivan sprinted through the Cork defence and was fouled by Kieran O’Connor as he tried to get his shot away blood substitute Brian Sheehan made no mistake from the free.

Cork nearly got a second goal when Paddy Kelly’s fisted effort was almost diverted to the net by Cussen, whose 6’7″ frame wasn’t quite long enough on this occasion. But Noel O’Leary took his point in the 46th minute to make it 1-7 to 0-6.

Kelly was then inches off target when he found himself in a one-on-one with Kerry ‘keeper Diarmuid O’Sullivan on 48 minutes. A goal there would have settled it. Cooper floated over a trademark point in the 51st minute to bring it back to a three-point match but O’Connor replied instantly from a free: 1-8 to 0-7 with 17 minutes of normal time left.

At the town end, Kerry’s forwards were unable to get any change out of a mean-looking Cork defence, while the Rebels looked more capable of carving out openings. A quick free from Canty sent O’Neill free and the impressive No.11 surged forward to fist a 55th-minute point and bring his personal return to 1-2 – the exact difference between the team (1-9 to 0-7).

Then, without warning, came five Kerry points in eight minutes as the pre-match favourites finally came to life

Donning the No.23 shirt, Sheehan (whose substitution was now permanent) curled over a Kerry free with just under twelve minutes to go and Kennelly bravely kicked a spectacular point from distance in the 60th minute, following a bustling Tomas O Se burst forward. Eight minutes from the end, Sheehan registered another great Kerry point from distance and the Kingdom men were now back within two.

Sheehan (free) was again the provider as Kerry took their fourth point in six minutes and the extent to which the Reds were rattled was all too apparent as Nicholas Murphy kicked nervously wide when he should have pointed.

In the 67th minute, Cooper outsmarted and outfought two markers to kick Kerry’s fifth consecutive score and tie the scores up at 0-12 to 1-9.
Substitute David Moran kicked a potential winning point wide in the 70th minute as Kerry strived to go ahead for the first time at a crucial juncture.

Deep into the second of two added minutes, Cork substitute Colm O’Neill displayed nerves of steel by converting a 45 to edge the Rebels back in front. The winning score surely? But there would be more added minutes and Sheehan hit the leveller from a free in the fourth additional minute.

That last score was a real heartbreaker for Cork. The initial free was awarded for a heavy tackle by Nicholas Murphy on Tomas O Se but indiscipline from the Rebel players resulted in the ball being moved forward and that extra yardage brought the kick within Sheehan’s range.
Sheehan’s late, late fifth point made it 0-13 to 1-10.

The familiar foes must meet again.

Ticket Information

Tickets for this game will be available to purchase through the Munster GAA website (munster.gaa.ie) from 3.00p.m. on Tuesday May 26th.

ADMISSION PRICES
Covered Stand – €30
Uncovered Seating – €25
Terrace – €20
Student Tickets (Terrace only) – €15
Juveniles – €5 (Family Ticket)

Senior Citizens please note that a refund of €10 is available on stand tickets on production of valid ID prior to entering the stadium at designated turnstiles on the day of the game.

Admission to the stand at Sunday’s Munster Senior Football Championship Semi-Final between Cork and Kerry is by ticket only. Please note stand tickets are currently on sale through the Munster GAA web site (http://munster.gaa.ie) where tickets can be purchased and printed at home at no additional cost. Tickets are also available through Ticketmaster. Any remaining stand tickets will be on sale on Sunday while stocks last.

Admission to the terrace ONLY can be obtained using tickets purchased already or by paying cash on the style.

Turnstiles will open at 11am on Sunday, The ticket office at D’Alton’s Ave will open at 10.30am to sell any remaining stand tickets, while stocks last.

To purchase Munster GAA tickets please click here

Useful Information

Parking is available at O’Grady’s Field, the Sem Pitch, Killarney Rugby Pitch and on the bypass road.

Supporters are advised that a motorcycle rally is scheduled to take place in Killarney on the morning of the game and so additional time should be allowed to reach the ground.

The redeveloped terrace, dressing rooms and wheelchair area will be officially opened on Sunday.

All Patrons are asked to come early to the games on Sunday and to cooperate fully with Gardaí and Stewards both inside and outside the ground.

The entrances to the Michael O’Connor terrace are as follows:

  • Green Section-Entry vis Daltons Avenue gates 26 to 35 Blue Section-Entry at Upper Lewis Road & St Finals Avenue gates 13 to 25 Red Section-Entry at Lower Lewis Road gates 1-11
  • The entry to the O’Sullivan Stand is via Daltons Avenue ONLY gates 39 to 47
  • The sideline entrance is via Daltons Avenue: Gates 36 to 38

Team News

Cork (SF v Kerry) – Alan Quirke (Valley Rovers); Ray Carey (Clyda Rovers), Michael Shields (St. Finbarrs), Anthony Lynch (Naomh Aban); John Meskella (Ballincollig), Graham Canty (Bantry Blues – Captain), Ger Spillane (Ballygarvan); Alan O Connor (St. Colms), Nicholas Murphy (Carrigaline); Paddy Kelly (Ballincollig), Pearse O Neill (Aghada), Paul Kerrigan (Nemo Rangers); Daniel Goulding (Eire Og), James Masters (Nemo Rangers), Donncha O Connor (Ballydesmond)

Kerry (SF v Cork) -Diarmuid Murphy (Dingle); Marc Ó Sé (An Ghaeltacht), Tom O’Sullivan (Rathmore), Padraig Reidy (Scartaglin); Tomás Ó Sé (An Ghaeltacht), Tommy Griffin (Dingle), Aidan O’Mahony (Rathmore); Tadhg Kennelly (Listowel Emmets), Michéal Quirke (Kerins O’Rahilly’s); Paul Galvin (Finuge ), Declan O’Sullivan (Piarsaigh Na Dromada), Donnacha Walsh (Cromane);  Colm Cooper (Dr. Crokes), Tommy Walsh (Kerins O’Rahilly’s), Darran O’Sullivan (Glenbeigh/Glencar) (Captain)
Subs: Ger Reidy (Castleisland Desmonds),  David Moran (Kerins O’Rahilly’s), Killian Young (Renard), Darragh Ó Sé (An Ghaeltacht), Seán O’Sullivan (Cromane), Aidan O’Shea (Glenbeigh/Glencar), Paul O’Connor (Kenmare),  Bryan Sheehan ( St Mary’s), Eoin Brosnan (Dr. Crokes ), Daniel Bohan (Austin Stacks), Maurice Corridan (Finuge), Kieran Quirke (Duagh), Barry John Walsh (Kerins O’Rahillys), Seamus Scanlon (Currow), Mike Frank Russell (Laune Rangers)

Fixture Details

Munster GAA Senior Football Championship Semi Final
Ciarraí v Corcaigh at 2.00p.m.
At Fitzgerald Stadium Killarney
Reiteoir – Maurice Deegan (Laois)

Match Coverage

The match will be shown live on TV3

Match Previews

Munster SFC Preview from the GAA.ie web site

It has been said that familiarity breeds contempt, but in the case of these old Munster rivals, there will be nothing but mutual respect in Killarney on Sunday.

The NFL Divisions One and Two champions meet under the ‘Reeks for a match that is expected to attract more than 35,000 spectators – a return to the halcyon days of Munster Championship football.

Munster SFC Semi-finals:
Killarney: Kerry v Cork, 14.00

Kerry are many people’s favourites to land the All-Ireland title this year under Jack O’Connor, while Cork are renascent under Conor Counihan and are considered, quite justifiably it should be added, dark horses to upset the big two, Kerry and Tyrone.

Remarkably, these teams have met 16 [sixteen] times since 2000, with Kerry claiming ten victories, Cork just three and a further three games drawn.

One of Cork’s wins came last year, when the Rebels shocked the then All-Ireland champions to take the Munster title at Páirc Ui Chaoimh. Kerry got their revenge later in the season, ending the Leesiders’ unexpected run in the All-Ireland semi-final after a replay.

Cork have made further progress since last year, proving their impressive campaign was no flash in the pan. The Division Two title came after they thoroughly outplayed Monaghan in the final – a team Kerry have traditionally struggled against in Croke Park.

Counihan, the Cork boss, used the National League campaign wisely and introduced a few more quality players to an already healthy squad. Paul Kerrigan, Paddy Kelly and Ray Carey have all forced their way into the starting line-up for Sunday, with Kerrigan set to follow in his father Jimmy’s footsteps by carving out a long and successful career in the blood and bandage.

The Rebels, as anyone who was present for the League finals will attest, have one of the biggest – if not the biggest – teams in the championship this year, but Kerry play a physical brand of football and should be able to cope with Cork’s giants, wing-forward Kelly, midfielders Nicholas Murphy and Alan O’Connor. Michael Cussen, who could be sprung from the bench after playing for his club, Glanmire, last weekend will also provide a goal threat with his towering presence.

Under O’Connor this year, Kerry appear to have improved and grown in confidence. The charismatic Caherciveen man used more than 30 players in a league campaign in which Kerry rarely moved out of third gear, but still won without much fuss. Like his counterpart, the Kerry boss has unearthed several stars of the future.

Surprisingly, Darragh Ó Sé will break his 14-year run in Kerry championship teams as he starts on the substitutes’ bench. O’Connor has entrusted Micheal Quirke and championship debutant Tadhg Kennelly with midfield duties. Their battle against O’Connor and Murphy should be one of the key areas on Sunday, with Ó Sé, an old nemesis of Cork, likely to come in to lend a hand in case of emergency.

Anthony Maher and Seamus Scanlon, both midfielders, miss out through injury, while Kieran Donaghy will be a massive loss in attack. However, captain Darran O’Sullivan, dubbed, somewhat unfairly, a supersub, will get the chance to shine from the start as he joins Colm Cooper and Tommy Walsh in a Kerry full-forward line that will test one of Cork’s potential weak spots.

Michael Shields starts at full-back for Cork and should pick up Cooper, while Anthony Lynch or Carey will have the unenviable job of picking up the Young Footballer of the Year, Walsh.

Kerry have a few problems of their own in defence, which will be thoroughly examined by a brilliant Cork attack. Marc Ó Sé and Padraig Reidy flank Tom O’Sullivan, who needs a big game to win over the doubters at full-back. Killian Young is not fully fit and is named on the bench.

James Masters, Donncha O’Connor and Daniel Goulding have been on fire this year and Cussen, a substitute, could be introduced as an impact sub after his goalscoring exploits against the same opposition last year.

After a few years in which the competitiveness of Munster football has been called into question, what we are guaranteed on Sunday is a close game. Kerry will be out for revenge after throwing away their Munster crown last year after leading handsomely at the break.

The incentive for Cork is to prove that they are real All-Ireland contenders this year, and there would be no better place to start than against a Kerry side brimming with talent and overflowing with confidence.

Cork already have a championship win under their belts after hammering Waterford, but home advantage and Jack O’Connor’s nous should shade it for the Kingdom.

Kerry: D Murphy; M Ó Sé, T O’Sullivan, P Reidy; T Ó Sé, T Griffin, A O’Mahony; T Kennelly, M Quirke; P Galvin, Declan O’Sullivan, D Walsh; C Cooper, T Walsh, Darran O’Sullivan.

Cork: A Quirke; R Carey, M Shields, A Lynch; J Miskella, G Canty, G Spillane; A O’Connor, N Murphy; P Kelly, P O’Neill, P Kerrigan; D Goulding, J Masters, D O’Connor.

Verdict: Kerry

Match Preview

This has been the busiest rivalry of all since the introduction of the All-Ireland qualifiers in 2001. Remarkably, next Sunday’s Munster semi-final will be the 17th meeting between the counties since 2000. They have met in one All-Ireland final, five semi-finals (one replay), six Munster finals (one replay) and four semi-finals (one replay) with the results going as follows: Kerry 10; Cork 3; Draws 3.

They met three times in 2008-2006-2002 and twice in 2007 and 2005. The last year Kerry and Cork didn’t meet in the championship was in 1997. However, there has been yearly action (sometimes twice and three times) since then which makes it the most regular fixture in the entire championship programme.

Kerry will be having their first outing in this year’s championship while Cork already have a win behind them, having beaten Waterford by 2-18 to 1-7 in the first round.

Last Five Championship Clashes
2008 – Kerry 2-14 Cork 1-13 (All-Ireland semi-final) Replay.
2008 – Kerry 1-13 Cork 3-7 (All-Ireland semi-final)
2008 – Cork 1-16 Kerry 1-11 (Munster final)
2007 – Kerry 3-13 Cork 1-9 (All-Ireland final)
2007 – Kerry 1-15 Cork 1-13 (Munster final)
Kerry 3, Cork 1, Draw 1.

Last Championship Clash
24 August 2008: Kerry 3-14 Cork 2-13 (All-Ireland semi-final replay)
Having drawn (Cork 3-7 Kerry 1-13), Kerry won the replay by four points on a day when Colm Cooper scored 1-8, Tommy Walsh 1-2 and Declan O’Sullivan 0-2.

Munster SFC Semi-Final – Clare vs. Limerick

Limerick defeated Clare by 1-13 to 1-9 in the Munster Senior Football Championship Semi-Final on Sunday at Cusack Park Ennis.


Clinical Treaty off to a flier

Limerick 1-13 Clare 1-9

By Michael Moynihan for the Irish Examiner newspaper

Monday, June 08, 2009

THE Championship wasn’t confined to Killarney yesterday.

Clare and Limerick served up a game of real bite and brio – in the first half, anyway – in Ennis yesterday, with Limerick taking the victory by four points.

Limerick offered the 4,386 spectators in Cusack Park the very definition of a flying start: Stephen Lucey and Jim O’Donovan points preceded a Stephen Lavin goal for the Shannonsiders.

A Jason Stokes-Ger Collins combination broke down, but Lavin steamed through to rescue the situation and slotted the ball home coolly past Dermot O’Brien.

When Ian Ryan pointed a free Limerick were six up with a bare five minutes on the clock.

“Sometimes those things can militate against a team,” said Limerick boss Mickey Ned O’Sullivan: “They can give the team on the receiving end an injection, and that’s what happened. Clare came back and they put it up to us.”

Credit Clare, they did. Following a David Tubridy pointed free, the referee correctly gave a throw-in deep in the Limerick half when their midfielder John Galvin retaliated, having won a free out. Tubridy won possession and bore down on goal, and though his handpass looked just too far ahead of Gary Brennan, the Clare midfielder managed to bundle the ball over the line: game on.

The sides exchanged the lead from then until half-time in an open game which saw plenty of entertaining football. Limerick operated with a two-man full-forward line of Jason Stokes and Ger Collins, with Clare keeping Tubridy and Michael O’Shea isolated at the other end.

Accordingly, there was plenty of space whenever a player broke out of the traffic in the middle third of the field: Clare’s Timmy Ryan came close to a goal when he soloed through, and Gordon Kelly had a fine point when he made ground.

At the other end Ger Collins won a lot of ball but lacked support, while Jason Stokes looked to involve players outside him rather than going for his own score.

David Tubridy tied the scores with a late first-half free, 1-7 apiece, and Clare had the breeze in the second half. However, Limerick sparkled again early on, with Collins (two) and Ryan hitting points before Tubridy replied for Clare in the 43rd minute.

That was one of only two scores that Clare managed in the second half, while Limerick drove on. They had introduced Eoin Hogan at half-time, and his pace was a potent addition to their attack.

The men in green kept Clare at bay and the Banner forwards were reduced to trying shots that weren’t always the best option, as their captain David Russell conceded afterwards: “It was a disappointing result, the way it ended up.

“Limerick just took their scores while we were trying to score from difficult angles.”

Clare had to wait until injury time for Michael O’Shea to add their second point, and by that stage Limerick had throttled the life out of the game.

Mickey Ned O’Sullivan has some work to do – his side lost their concentration totally when Clare surged at them in the first half and left some alarming gaps at the back which Cork or Kerry would likely punish. In addition, Clare enjoyed parity at midfield, with Timmy Ryan and David Russell doing shifts there at various times in the game; O’Sullivan will want more from his combination of John Galvin and Jim O’Donovan in the decider.

“The win was based on graft and hard work,” said O’Sullivan. “We’re in the final now, and we’re the only team in the final.”

Scorers for Clare: D. Tubridy 0-4 (f’s); G. Brennan 1-0; G. Quinlan 0-2; E. Coughlan, Gordon Kelly and M. O’Shea 0-1 each.

Scorers for Limerick: I. Ryan 0-6 (0-3 f’s); G. Collins 0-3 (0-2 fs), S. Lavin 1-0; S. Buckley, J. O’Donovan, S. Lucey, E. Hogan 0-1 each.

CLARE: D. O’Brien, L. Healy, C. Whelan, D. Ryan, G. Kelly, K. Dilleen, G. Kelly, G. Quinlan, G. Brennan, E. Coughlan, D. Russell (c), P. Reidy, M. O’Shea, T. Ryan, D. Tubridy.

Subs: M. McMahon for D. Ryan, 26; S. Collins for Coughlan, 49; C. O’Connor or Reidy and G. Lynch for Ryan, both 63; N. Considine for Healy, 70. .

LIMERICK: S. Kiely, J. McCarthy, S. Gallagher, M. O’Riordan, S. Lavin, S. Lucey, P. Ranahan, J. O’Donovan, J. Galvin, P. Browne, I. Ryan, S. Buckley (c), C. Joyce-Power, J. Stokes, G. Collins.

Subs: E. Hogan for Joyce-Power HT; K. O’Callaghan for Stokes, 54; D. Phelan for Buckley (blood) 59-61; T. Cahill for O’Donovan, 72.

Referee: P. McGovern (Galway)

<hr>
O’Sullivan: proving media wrong not our aim

By Michael Moynihan of the Irish Examiner newspaper

Monday, June 08, 2009

LIMERICK manager Mickey Ned O’Sullivan was happy with his side’s win yesterday but also had a word for media commentators who had criticised the Shannonsiders in recent months.

“Being a manager, that’s part of it. You guys have a job to do and you won’t sell papers praising us. You have to be controversial. We take that as part and parcel of management, but we don’t have anything to prove to the media. We have to prove it to ourselves.

“We knew we weren’t doing ourselves justice, and maybe the media were right to point that out, but we don’t go out to prove the media wrong. That’s irrelevant, because none of you guys are out on the field.

“The players are out there, and they know what they’re capable of. You win games, the media is with you, you lose games and they’re against you. That’s part and parcel of it.”

Regarding the game itself, O’Sullivan was happy his side rallied after the break.

“The way we took control against the breeze after half-time, we had to impose ourselves on the game. Eoin Hogan did well when he came on, he used his pace and did well.

“We knew it was going to be tough. If we hadn’t respected Clare we would have lost that game. We had a lot of work done on them, we knew they were good and had some very strong players. We knew we had a bad second half against Tipp the last day and we knew we could turn that around, and we did that. We dug deep.”

O’Sullivan feels Limerick are stronger this year than in previous seasons.

“We have options this year. Two years ago we didn’t have options and last year we had injuries, but we have plenty of options this year. With more summer football these lads will get a chance, and they’ll be fighting for their places.

“We didn’t put an emphasis on the league. We felt we slipped up last year in not getting to a Munster final – that was our All-Ireland.

“We knew the draw favoured us, and we’re there now. It’s a victory for the football people of Limerick, for the players, who believe in themselves and for the management team, the coach and selectors. It’s a victory for the underdog to get to the final and who knows what’ll happen.”

Understandably, Clare skipper David Russell was disappointed.

“We went 15 or 20 minutes without scoring in the second half, and you can’t do that in championship football. You have to keep the scoreboard ticking over.

“Giving them a head start didn’t help either, we had to put in awful hard work to get back into it. But you can’t let a team get six points up, there’s desperate hard work in getting level after that.”

<hr>
Red-hot Ryan leads way as Clare shown the back door

From the Irish Independent newspaper

Monday June 08 2009

The Limerick footballers advanced, as expected, to the Munster final at the expense of Clare at Cusack Park, Ennis, yesterday.

An impressive second-half performance against an opposition that could only manage two pointed frees in that period, proved to be the catalyst for victory.

Coming into this game off the back of an impressive win over a fancied Tipperary in the opening round, Mickey Ned O’Sullivan’s charges wore the tag of red-hot favourites against a first-time-out Clare, who were far from impressive in their Division 4 National League campaign. So it was no surprise as to how the game began yesterday.

Limerick got off to a whirlwind start and led by 1-2 to no score after just three and a half minutes. An Ian Ryan pointed free for the Shannonsiders on five minutes meant that Clare trailed by six points and looked to be in deep trouble.

Dual star Stephen Lucey opened the scoring for the afternoon inside a minute and midfielder Jim O’Donovan added another after he was fed by the impressive Ger Collins.

A lethargic Banner defence allowed Stephen Lavin an inordinate amount of space and the Adare clubman got the better of advancing keeper Dermot O’Brien in a one-on-one to produce the game’s first goal.

The Clare fans anticipated a white-wash after the early encounters but, admirably, Frank O’Doherty’s men dug deep and responded in true-grit fashion.

David Tubridy kick-started the revival with a pointed free in the eighth minute and when Gary Brennan goaled two minutes later, they were back in the game. Tubridy gained possession on the left flank after a throw-in by referee McGovern and he hand-passed to the edge of the square where Brennan managed to place himself in position to nudge it over the line.

Midfielder Ger Quinlan followed up with a point from distance and when the O’Curry’s man added another on 17 minutes, the sides were level. Tubridy gave the Banner the lead with another placed ball after a 13-minute spell when they overturned a six-point deficit.

Limerick scores from Collins and Ian Ryan restored their lead by the 23rd minute, but from then until the end of the half there was little or nothing between the sides.

tirelessly

Impressive Clare wing-back Gordon Kelly, who worked tirelessly all day, grabbed the equaliser and when his colleague Enda Coughlan fisted a point at the end of the half-hour, the home-side had their tails up.

A superb long-range effort by Limerick captain Seanie Buckley regained parity and with both Tubridy and Ryan landing good scores from frees before the whistle, the teams were deadlocked at 1-7 apiece at the break.

But the Shannonsiders upped their performance a notch after the break and took control of matters. Ger Collins from play and from a free either side of an Ian Ryan free gave them a three-point advantage by the 52nd minute.

A Tubridy free for Clare kept it tight as the game headed into an elongated scoreless period.

Even though Limerick held all the aces, their fans in the 4,386 crowd couldn’t express relief or fulfilment until sub Eoin Hogan put four between the sides in the 56th minute. Ryan immediately added another score to take the wind out of Clare’s sails and when the No 14 recorded another beautiful score from the right flank closer to the finish, Limerick were home and dry.

Michael O’Shea converted a late free for Clare but a haul of only two points in the second half was never going to be enough to win a championship match.

Scorers– Limerick: I Ryan 0-6 (4 f), G Collins 0-3 (2 f), S Lavin 1-0, S Lucey, J O’Donovan, S Buckely, E Hogan 0-1 each. Clare: D Tubridy 0-4 (4f), G Brennan 1-0, G Quinlan 0-2, Gordon Kelly,E Coughlan, M O’Shea (f) 0-1 each.

Limerick — S Kiely; J McCarthy, S Gallagher, M O’Riordan; S Lavin, S Lucey, P Ranahan; J O’Donovan, J Galvin; P Browne, I Ryan, S Buckley (capt); C Joyce-Power, J Stokes, G Collins.Subs: E Hogan for Joyce-Power (ht), K O’Callaghan for Stokes (53), T Cahill for O’Donovan (70).

Clare — D O’Brien; L Healy, C Whelan, D Ryan; Gordon Kelly, K Dilleen, Graham Kelly; G Quinlan, G Brennan; E Coughlan, D Russell (capt), P Reidy; M O’Shea, T Ryan, D Tubridy. Subs: M McMahon for D Ryan (26), S Collins for Coughlan (50), C O’Connor for Reidy (64), G Lynch for T Ryan (64), N Considine for Healy (70).

Ref — P McGovern (Galway).


Fixture Details

Munster GAA Senior Football Championship Semi Final
An Clár v Luimneach at 4.00p.m.
At Cusack Park Ennis
Reiteoir – Pat McGovern (Gaillimh)

Team News

Limerick (SFC v Clare): S Kiely; J McCarthy, S Gallagher, M O’ Riordan; S Lavin, S Lucey, P Ranahan; J O’Donovan, J Galvin; P Browne, J Stokes, S Buckley; C Joyce-Power, I Ryan, G Collins.

Clare (SFC v Limerick): D O’Brien; L Healy, C Whelan, D Ryan; Gordon Kelly, K Dilleen, Graham Kelly; G Quinlan, G Brennan; E Coughlan, D Russell (captain), P Reidy; M O’Shea, T Ryan, D Tubridy.

Match Preview

They may be close neighbours, but meetings between Clare and Limerick are the hen’s teeth of Munster Championship football.

Munster SFC Semi-final:

Ennis: Limerick v Clare, 16:00

The two sides have met just four times since 1984, which was the last time The Banner managed a win over Limerick.

The last time they encountered eachother was back in 2006, with goals by John Galvin and Michael Crowley winning the game for Limerick on a 2-5 to 0-8 scoreline.

Limerick will, justifiably, go into Sunday’s clash in Ennis as favourites to land a fourth straight win against Clare, with that confidence stemming from the defeat of Tipperary in the previous round.

Tipperary were riding high after winning the Allianz NFL Division Three title, and after Mickey Ned O’Sullivan’s side had been relegated, the feeling was that Tipp would be too strong.

However, Limerick surprised many with a one-point win, which looked like being far greater at half-time. Mickey Ned has a solid side and the availability of his dual players, Stephen Lucey and Mark Riordan is a massive boost this year.

O’Sullivan has named the same starting XV for Sunday, with one minor positional change as Ian Ryan, who scored a vital goal against Tipperary, switches to full-forward in a direct swap with Jason Stokes, who moves out to the ’40.

Frank Doherty, the Clare manager, has named three championship newcomers in his team. Paul Reidy starts at half-forward, Graham Kelly at wing-back and Dean Ryan at corner-back.

A number of players have overcome fitness scares to start with Conor Ryan, Michael O’Shea and Timmy Ryan all making it.

However, Clare look to be lacking the experience needed to cause an upset in Ennis, and Limerick should progress to a Munster final meeting with Cork or Kerry.

Clare: D O’Brien; L Healy, C Whelan, D Ryan; Gordon Kelly, K Dilleen, Graham Kelly; G Quinlan, G Brennan; E Coughlan, D Russell, P Reidy; M O’Shea, T Ryan, D Tubridy.

Limerick: S Kiely, J McCarthy, S Gallagher, M O’ Riordan, S Lavin, S Lucey, P Ranahan, J O’Donovan, J Galvin, P Browne, J Stokes, S Buckley, C Joyce-Power, I Ryan, G Collins.

Verdict: Limerick

Match Preview

They may be close neighbours in a six-county Munster championship but they have not met as often in recent times as might be expected. In fact, next Sunday’s clash will be only the fifth between them since 1984 which, incidentally, was the last time Clare beat Limerick. Since then Limerick have won all three clashes, the most recent being in 2006 when they won by 2-5 to 0-8.

Overall, they have met 37 times in the championship with Clare leading 22-10 while there have been five draws. Clare will be having their first outing in this year’s championship whereas Limerick have a victory behind them, having beaten high-flying Tipperary by 1-11 to 1-9 in the first round.

Last Five Championship Clashes
2006 – Limerick 2-5 Clare 0-8
2003 – Limerick 2-14 Clare 0-12
1988 – Limerick 2-4 Clare 0-5
1984 – Clare 2-5 Limerick 0-10 (replay)
1984 – Clare 0-10 Limerick 1-7
1982 – Clare 4-12 Limerick 0-8

Last Championship Clash
21 May 2006: Limerick 2-5 Clare 0-8 (Munster first round)
Goals by John Galvin and Michael Crowley helped Limerick to a three point win to set them up for a semi-final clash with Cork which they lost by four points.

Munster IHC Semi-Final – Limerick v Waterford

Waterford defeated Limerick by 5-15 to 0-7 in the Munster Intermediate Hurling Championship Semi-Final at Semple Stadium Thurles on Sunday.


WATERFORD 5-15 LIMERICK 0-7

From the Irish Independent newspaper

Monday June 15 2009

LAST year’s winners Limerick were on the end of a 23-point mauling by Waterford in yesterday’s Munster IHC semi-final. Pa Kearney shone for the Deise.

SCORERS — Waterford: P Kearney 3-1, B Hannon 0-6 (0-6f), P Hurney 1-2, J Kearney 1-1, D Murphy 0-3, P Fitzgerald, L Lawlor 0-1 each. Limerick: T O’Brien 0-4 (0-2f, 1 ’65), N Quaid, M Keane, T Quaid (0-1f) 0-1 each.

WATERFORD — I O’Regan; B Wall, J O’Leary, K Flynn; J Coffey, S Kearney, W Henley; P Fitzgerald, D Murphy; P Hurney, D Howard, J Kearney; B Hannon, L Lawlor, P Kearney. Subs: D Hickey for Howard (50), P Molumphy for Wall (54), S Hannon for Fitzgerald (56), M Whelan for Hurney (58), R Hennessy for Henley (59).

LIMERICK — B Hennessy; A Hennessy, B Kelliher, G O’Leary; D Moloney, S O’Neill, P O’Brien; N Quaid, A Brennan; P Harty, P O’Reilly, T O’Brien; T Ryan, D O’Neill, T Quaid. Subs: L O’Dwyer for P O’Brien (h/t), M Keane for Ryan (h/t), E O’Leary for O’Reilly (h/t), P Cremin for Moloney (36), J Quane for T Quaid (54).

Ref — S McMahon (Clare).


Fixture Details

SUNDAY JUNE 14th. 2009.
At SEMPLE STADIUM, THURLES
Munster GAA Intermediate Hurling Championship Semi-Final
Luimneach v Port Lairge at 2.00p.m.
Reiteoir: Sean McMahon (An Clár)


Team News

LIMERICK INTERMEDIATE HURLING TEAM – 14th June ‘09

1. Barry Hennessy B. Ó hAonasa Kilmallock

2. Aidan Hennessy A. Ó hAonasa Na Piarsaigh

3. Brian Kelliher B. Ó Céileachair Dromin/Athlacca

4. Gearoid O’Leary G. Ó Laoire Dromin/Athlacca

5. David Moloney D. Ó Maolomhnaigh Blackrock

6. Shane O’Neill S. Ó Néill South Liberties

7. Paudie O’Brien P. Ó Briain Kilmallock

8. Nicky Quaid N. Mac Uaid Effin

9. Andrew Brennan (Capt) A. Ó Braonáin Caherline

10. Peter Harty P. Ó hAghartaigh Patrickswell

11. Peter O’Reilly P. Ó Raghallaigh Patrickswell

12. Tommy O’Brien T. Ó Briain Patrickswell

13. Tiernan Ryan T. Ó Riain Dromin/Athlacca

14. David O’Neill D. Ó Niall South Liberties

15. Tommy Quaid T. Mac Uaid Effin
16. Albert Shanahan A. Ó Seancháin South Liberties

17. Lorcan O’Dwyer L. Ó Dhubhuír Pallasgreen

18. Mark Keane M. Ó Céin South Liberties

19. Brian Moloney B. Ó Maolomhnaigh Blackrock

20. Eoin O’Leary E. Ó Laoire Dromin/Athlacca

21. Patrick Cremin P. Ó Croimín Killeedy

22. John Quane S. Ó Cuain Glenroe

23. Ross Kennedy R. Ó Cinnéide Adare

24. Willie O’Dea L. Ó Deá Patrickswell
Manager: Gerry Molyneaux

Trainer/Coach: Sean Hehir

Selectors: Pat Heffernan,Andy Cunneen,Jimmy Stapleton,John Franklin,Ger O’Connell

Physio: Pauline McAulliffe

Liasion Officer: Tony Roche

Team Doctor: Dave Boylan


Waterford
– TBC

Christy Ring Cup S-Final Replay – Kerry vs. Carlow

Carlow overpower Kerry

From the GAA.ie web site

Saturday, June 13th

Christy Ring Cup Semi-Final:

Carlow 6-10 Kerry 2-11

Kerry put up a decent first half showing against Carlow in their Christy Ring Cup semi-final, but were ultimately blown away in the second half.

Kerry led 1-8 to 1-5 at the break having surprised the Leinster side with a gutsy display at Austin Stack Park.

However, Carlow managed five second half goals to completely outclass their opponents and move into the final.

Kerry grabbed the game’s first goal on 10 minutes, full-forward James McCarthy smashing to the net. The Kingdom’s talisman Shane Brick was in outstanding form, clipping over five points to further punish Carlow’s slackness.

However, Carlow managed to keep things tight enough when Rory Dunbar hit a free straight to the net just shy of half-time. Then, points before the whistle from Dunbar, Craig Doyle and Robbie Foley reduced the gap to three.

After the break, Foley pointed again for Carlow to narrow things further and they took the lead for the first time when Andrew Gaul struck to the net. That made it 2-6 to 1-8 and Kerry never recovered once their relinquished their precious buffer. Paudie Kehoe knocked one over for the visitors, and then Robbie Foley hit his first goal of the game. Doyle then grabbed a major of his own hot on the heels of an Edward Byrne point to put nine points in it.

By now, there wasn’t even a spark of contest in the game and Robbie Foley and Craig Doyle partied in the Kerry wreckage, both knocking in their second goals to complete the rout.


Smashing Carlow hit the Kingdom for mighty six

CHRISTY RING CUP SEMI-FINAL REPLAY

From the Nationalist newspaper

Carlow 6-10 Kerry 2-11

A SIX-gun salute rang round Tralee on Saturday afternoon as Carlow unleashed a hidden weapon to mow down Kerry in an extraordinary Christy Ring Cup semi-final replay. Talk about the proverbial game of two halves. Four minutes shy of the break the tentative visitors, being bossed all over the park, had registered just a single point from play. Trailing 1-8 to 1-2, Andrew Gaul’s superb ninth minute point from the stand sideline had been an exception to a rule that ordained a fired-up Kerry controlled proceedings.A pointed 65 by full-back Shane Kavanagh and a goal off a well-struck Ruairi Dunbar 20m free (awarded for a foul on Gaul as he tried to collect a dropping ball from Mark Brennan) were the source of Carlow’s only other scores.

While Dunbar’s goal could be viewed as the turning point, providing the holders with a badly needed boost, the fact of the matter is Kerry reeled off the next three points to restore their six-point advantage. In the 31st minute Kerry’s big centre-half forward Gary O’Brien, the influential sub of the drawn game, drove over an inspirational point from inside his own half. That opened up that 1-8 to 1-2 gap and the champions looked in deep trouble. The match then entered the realms of Ripley’s Believe it or not. Amazingly, from the 31st minute of the first half to the 31st minute of the second half Carlow outscored Kerry by a massive 4-8 to 0-1. Yes, 4-8 to 0-1 and that from a free.

If we cast doubt on Dunbar’s goal as the turning point, there is no doubt that his next score has all the credentials of a match-changing moment. From the puck-out after O’Brien’s mammoth point, Carlow very nearly scored a goal of their own. Craig Doyle latched on to Frank Foley’s delivery and soloed towards the Dunne Stores end posts before hand-passing inside to Dunbar whose first-time effort just cleared the bar. As a previous ‘Styler’ run and pass almost led to a Robbie Foley goal, the full forward mistiming his first-time pull, the two spurned goal-chances still gave us a glimmer of hope. However the fact that Dunbar’s point was quickly followed by points from Doyle (a sweet score from the terrace wing) and Foley (after a great catch of a Paudie Kehoe delivery) gave Carlow momentum for the first time.

Going in at half-time just 1-8 to 1-5 in arrears having played poorly, the wind to come, the champions were in with a chance. No one, though, could have envisaged the incredible transformation that took place on the restart. It was a completely different Carlow team, attitude wise, that emerged from the Austin Stack Park dressing rooms. Gone was the lethargy normally alien to the squad, replaced by the usual vim and vigour, fighting spirit that carried the red, yellow and green to Ring Cup glory last year. This change was obvious from the throw-in and within four minutes Carlow were in front, another Robbie Foley catch-and-turn point the prelude to the first of five second half goals for the Scallion Aters. A Shane Kavanagh clearance dropped close to the stand sideline, the ball breaking off Paudie Kehoe’s hurl into the path of Ruairi Dunbar. The number 10 made tracks for the posts before slipping a pass inside to Andrew Gaul, the Duke dinking a first jab in the Kerry rigging. After Paudie Kehoe confidently pointed a 50m free and Mark Brennan rifled over a fabulous point from the terrace wing, Carlow stuck for another goal in the 46th minute. Jacko Rogers broke up a Kerry raid, found James Hickey whose long cross-field delivery located Robbie Foley in the right corner, the number 14 cut in to leave a strong low shot in the Kerry net.

On as a blood sub, Eddie Byrne scored a rousing point and though Shane Brick’s pointed free finally opened Kerry’s second half account, it was but a brief halt to a Carlow scoring spree cheered to the echo by their loyal travelling army. Paudie Kehoe’s incisive run and hand pass fashioned the opening for Craig Doyle to lash a 53rd minute goal that opened up a three-goal gap and effectively ended the game as a contest. Mindful, though, of Kerry’s rallying powers the previous day, Carlow went for the jugular. A fantastic Jacko Rogers catch and clever clearance located Paudie Kehoe who drifted over a magnificent long-range point before Robbie Foley netted again in the 62nd minute, this time from the edge of the square having been put in possession by a hand pass from Eddie Byrne, ‘Feathers’ having collected a crafty low-ball from Mark Brennan.

That completed the stunning 4-8 to 0-1 35-minute blitz and left Carlow leading 5-10 to 1-9. Shell-shocked Kerry did manage a couple of consolation scores towards the finish, including a John Mike Dooley goal. Carlow, though, fired the last shot, Craig Doyle pouncing on an error in the left corner to pick-and-go and drill home goal number 6.

Carlow: Frank Foley; Willie Hickey, Shane Kavanagh (.-. ..), Dessie Shaw; Eddie Coady, John Rogers, Richie Coady; Damien Roberts, James Hickey; Ruairi Dunbar (.-., .-.f), Craig Doyle (.-.), Mark Brennan (.-., Capt); Andrew Gaul (.-.), Robbie Foley (.-.), Paudie Kehoe ( .f). Subs: Derek Byrne for R Coady (..mins), Eddie Byrne (.-.) for Dunbar, Dunbar for E Byrne (temp ..-..mins), Eddie Byrne for Hickey (..mins), Colin Hughes for R Foley (..mins), Paul Kehoe for Roberts (..mins).

Kerry: John Healy; Padraig O’Grady, Aidan Healy, Colin Harris; Jason Casey, Tom Murnane (Capt), James Godley; Eoin Sheehy, John Griffin; Evan Sweeney (.-.), Gary O’Brien ( Shane Brick (.-., .f); Billy Brick (.-.), James McCarthy (.-.), John Mike Dooley (.-.). Subs: M Hanafin for C Harris (HT), J Fitzgerald for M Hanafin (..mins) S Young for G O’Brien (..mins), E Fitzgerald for P O’Grady (..mins).

Referee: D O’Driscoll (Limerick)

Munster SFC S-Final Replay – Kerry v Cork

Classy Cork sink Kerry

From the GAA.ie web site

Saturday, June 13th

A superb display from Cork saw them triumphantly overcome Kerry in a compelling Munster Championship clash at Pairc Uí Chaóimh on Saturday evening. Cork were outstanding in the first half and led 0-9 to 0-4 at half-time.

Munster Senior Championship Semi-Final Replay:
Cork 1-17 Kerry 0-12

However, Kerry came roaring back after the restart and hit five points in a row before Donncha O’Connor’s penalty restored Cork’s advantage. Things were tight for much of the second half but eventually Cork’s superior fitness and zip overwhelmed Kerry, and they raced to glory with ease, the eight-point margin of victory in no way flattering. The opening score was pure Kerry, a sweeping move up the field involving Marc Ó Sé and the brilliant Declan O’Sullivan, and ending up being kicked sweet as a nut over the bar by Bryan Sheehan. Sheehan tacked on a free soon after to put Kerry two up and they had clearly settled quicker than a tense Cork. Donncha O’Connor popped over a handy free for Cork soon after to get them on the board, and when Anthony Lynch won two crucial balls in battle with Colm Cooper soon after, Rebel tails were up.

O’Connor then levelled things up with a sublime right-footer, before Daniel Goulding followed up with an almost identical point to push Cork in front. Suddenly, the edginess was all Kerry’s as Sheehan pushed a free wide and O’Connor thumped over his third point. Then, the rapid Cork half-back line plundered its first point with John Miskella rampaging up the field and knocking it over to put three between the sides. Cork’s flowing vibrancy continued though and Patrick Kelly hammered one over the bar to put four in it. Cooper then finally won something off Lynch, being tugged back and knocking over the resultant free. Cork should have been more than three in front at that stage but they managed to extend the lead to five before half-time.

A nifty score from Paul Kerrigan, a free from the outstanding O’Connor and one from Goulding completed the Cork scoring for the opening period, with the hardworking Tadhg Kennelly getting Kerry’s final point of the half. Kerry brought on David Moran for Marc Ó Sé at half-time, with Moran moving to midfield and Tommy Griffin moving into defence.

Straight from the restart, Kerry fashioned a clearcut goal chance. Darran O’Sullivan, a substitute on for Sheehan, burned in brilliantly from the right and fizzed one over the bar but he really could and should have hit the net. Immediately after, Declan O’Sullivan hit his first of the day, a similar effort to Darran’s, cutting in with pace and knocking over. It looked like the tide was turning, and turning dramatically. Cooper then reduced the gap to two points with a free and although Cork had a brief glimmer at stopping the Kerry run, Goulding missed a free wildly. Dara Ó Sé put one in it when he raced up the right wing and sailed one between the posts and Kerry levelled at 0-9 apiece when Moran powered over a technically perfect ’45.

Just as a nerveless Kerry seemed to be forcing Cork to wilt by the sheer force of who they were, the Rebels responded. Goulding was fouled in the small parallelogram and O’Connor nicked the penalty into the net off the post. Somehow, Cork had survived the blitz and came out almost stronger. A Goulding free straight after the penalty put four in it and it was harsh on Kerry, that for all their renewed vigour, they still were well behind. Cooper quickly reduced the gap with two quick frees though, and the urgency to Kerry’s play was seriously upsetting a Cork team which looked a shadow of the side that had outclassed The Kingdom in the opening period. But a classy score from James Masters put a goal between them again and then Paul O’Flynn, fresh off the Cork bench, left Cork four clear.

Seconds later, Goulding had a fantastic chance to kill Kerry once and for all with a clear run on goal but his effort clipped the timber and went wide. Still, Cork had truly clipped Kerry’s wings and an O’Connor free restored the five point advantage they had at the break. Darran O’Sullivan’s second point could have been a goal but it went over and left four in it, but once again Cork responded, Goulding knocking over another score and leaving Tom O’Sullivan flailing on the ground to boot. Fintan Gould then raced through athletically and flashed one over, Goulding then added another and it seemed that Kerry were beat, confirmed with one final, potent effort from Miskella.

Cork: A Quirke; R Carey, M Shields, A Lynch; J Miskella, G Canty, N O’Leary; A O’Connor, N Murphy; P Kelly, P O’Neill, P Kerrigan; D Goulding, J Masters, D O’Connor.

Kerry: D Murphy; M Ó Sé, T O’Sullivan, P Reidy; T Ó Sé, A O’Mahony, K Young; D Ó Sé, T Griffin; P Galvin, D O’Sullivan, T Kennelly; C Cooper, T Walsh, B Sheehan.


And the road stretches out before them…

Cork 1-17 Kerry 0-12

By Tony Leen of the Irish Examiner newspaper

Monday, June 15, 2009

THE TEAM buses waiting outside Páirc Uí Chaoimh afterwards might have been pointed to the same road, but Cork and Kerry are no longer travelling in the one direction. An unwelcome draw may throw the Munster rivals together for the 19th time in a decade later this summer but Cork won’t fret at the prospect. Last August in Croke Park and again a week ago in Killarney, Conor Counihan’s men had Kerry’s measure if not their nous and conviction. That shaky bridge has been crossed now. Defeating the Kingdom as comprehensively as the eight-point margin suggests in Saturday’s Munster SFC semi-final replay means Cork can move on from Croke Park ghosts in green and gold and focus instead on the gold. “We were very dominant last week,” said Cork coach Conor Counihan afterwards. “We had three or four goal chances but couldn’t take them. Maybe we needed to cross this line fairly convincingly once and for all.” That they did, but with it comes a new set of analytical criteria – those of potential All-Ireland winners. “We’re above the radar now,” accepted Counihan, “but we have to learn to cope with that, and if you want to be successful you have to do that.” Kerry coach Jack O’Connor noted discernible differences too. “They’re a driven team. The level of athleticism has certainly gone up since I was last involved. To match teams like Cork, it looks like that’s the road you have to go down.” But there was a caveat from the Dromid man: “The only thing about it lads is that the All-Ireland isn’t played in June.” If it was, how ready are Cork? It’s unlikely Counihan will permit his players to absorb the hype that will inevitably follow this victory, primarily because they are still a work in progress and Limerick are awkward Munster final opponents. Cork are raw and powerful and developing as a unit. But they dominated two games against Kerry, and only found Diarmuid Murphy’s net once from play. There will be days when they won’t flow so freely and they’ll need a net-finder to bail them out. Donncha O’Connor and Daniel Goulding take note, the Pearse O’Neill express train won’t always arrive.

There’s still that scintilla of doubt about their fragility when things go pear-shaped. There was an interesting gut-check moment when Kerry turned a 0-9 to 0-4 half time deficit into a drawn game ten minutes after the break, but Donncha O’Connor’s penalty and a pointed free from Goulding snatched it from under our curious noses. Every opposition will have momentum for a while, but championship-winning teams limit the damage on the scoreboard when they’re under the cosh. “We’ve a lot of work to do,” agreed Counihan. “We let Kerry back into a game that we were dominating and that’s been a feature for us. We’ve a lot of positives coming out of this game, but a lot of work too. This team has been through a lot with Kerry over the years but I was confident all the time that we could do it. We were a bit more efficient but I don’t think Kerry were at their best in the two games, and we have issues in terms of consistency and performance over 70 minutes.”

The duel of Anthony Lynch and Colm Cooper offered a suitable microcosm of Saturday’s replay in front of a healthy crowd of 30,270. The Kerry wizard toiled all day, but the longer it went on, the more forlorn his efforts became. The Ballyvourney man beat Cooper to good ball and bad, high and low, and in a man of the match-winning display, put a perfect goal-stopping shoulder on Eoin Brosnan late in the day. Only Declan O’Sullivan and Tadhg Kennelly profited in terms of ball-winners in the Kerry attack, and one wonder was that down to the switch of Graham Canty to wing back and John Miskella to centre back. The latter got better as the game progressed – one of many in this Cork team with huge engines – and applied a late coup de grâce with the penultimate point of the match. But Counihan will note that only two points came from his starting half forward line and that his midfield, while competent and competitive, never dominated.

Kerry may point to the sending off of Paul Galvin in the first half for another schoolyard tussle with Noel O’Leary (also dismissed), but on reflection they would be better served wondering why they are getting such little leadership from the likes of Galvin, Cooper and Aidan O’Mahony, a trio of All Stars who could look to the aforementioned Kennelly and Declan O’Sullivan for focus. Darragh O Sé is no longer blowing out dirty petrol, he’s running on fumes and his own innate sense of Kerryness. Some may say he won’t meet as mobile a midfield again this summer, but Cork have set the bar now. The veteran was far from Kerry’s worst player, but that Kerry are so desperate for the return from injury of one player, says a lot in itself. Jack and his wise men need more than Kieran Donaghy in the dressing room. Expect names like Anthony Maher, Aidan O’Shea and Barry John Walsh to appear on team-sheets this season.

The Kingdom enjoyed a rare period of supremacy in the opening ten minutes but it was quickly doused by Cork, with Donncha O’Connor profiting from Marc O Sé’s struggles with a hamstring strain. Goulding, Masters and Pearse O’Neill missed goal chances, but Cork still reached half-time a healthy, and deserved five points to the good. Jack O’Connor took succour from his side’s early second half form, inspired by replacements Darran O’Sullivan and David Moran, but when Padraig Reidy felled Goulding inside the Kerry cover in the 46th minute, Kerry were again relying on Cork to bail them out of trouble. Instead, Donncha O’Connor converted the penalty with slide rule precision.Kerry rallied briefly though pitching Declan O’Sullivan in the full forward line at the three-quarter point smacked of early desperation when he was still causing trouble further out the field.

The two games may benefit Kerry’s rehabilitation, but they’ll do wonders for a Cork squad quickly acclimatising to big-day situations. Limerick will ask questions but Counihan’s biggest test could be keeping the momentum going between provincial final and All-Ireland quarters in August. Goulding missed a gilt-edged goal chance with 12 minutes left and four points between the teams (1-12 to 0-11), but egged on by a Cork crowd finally appearing to embrace this side, they brushed it off and made for home. “The penalty was an important point, but I thought we were the better team throughout,” Counihan reflected. “When we showed our best football we were difficult to play against.”A few coaches around the country might agree.

Scorers for Cork: D O’Connor (1-5, pen, 3 frees); D Goulding (0-5, 2 frees), J Miskella (0-2), P Kelly, P Kerrigan, J Masters, F Goold, P O’Flynn (0-1 each)

Scorers for Kerry: C Cooper (0-4, frees), Darran O’Sullivan (0-2), B Sheehan (0-2, free), D O Sé, Declan O’Sullivan, T Kennelly, D Moran (free), (0-1 each)

Referee: P McEnaney (Monaghan)


Cork 1-17 Kerry 0-12

Saturday, 13 June 2009 19:37

From the RTE.ie web site

Cork moved into the Munster final to face Limerick after a pulsating win over Kerry at Páirc Uí Chaoimh. The Rebels were denied victory last weekend when a controversial late free saw Kerry level the match deep into injury time in Killarney and knew that they had to at least match their endeavour from that day to progress today.

They were the dominant team in the first period, moving five points clear of Kerry at the interval thanks to the industrious performance of their forward line, especially Donncha O’Connor, while Kerry’s forwards were well marshalled, as man-of-the-match Anthony Lynch dominated an off-form Colm Cooper. Both teams were reduced to 14 men after 25 minutes when an elbow from Paul Galvin brought a retaliatory punch from Noel O’Leary and both men were shown a straight red card.

At half-time there looked like only one winner with Cork retaining possession better and moving the ball well, while Kerry appeared tired, but predictably they roared back in the second period and drew level within ten minutes as Darren O’Sullivan made an instant impression off the bench.

However a penalty for Cork was the turning point in the 46th minute. Daniel Goulding found himself clean through on goal and Padraig Reidy pulled his jersey to give away a certain penalty. Donncha O’Connor slotted home the spot kick and although Kerry struggled to stay in touch, Cork pulled away after that and earned a deserved win.

Cork: A Quirke; K O’Connor, M Shields, A Lynch; J Miskella, G Canty, G Spillane; A O’Connor, N Murphy; P Kelly, P O’Neill, P Kerrigan; D Goulding, J Masters, D O’Connor.

Kerry: D Murphy, M Ó Sé, T O’Sullivan, P Reidy; T Ó Sé, A O’Mahony, K Young; D Ó Sé, T Griffin; P Galvin, D O’Sullivan, T Kennelly; C Cooper, T Walsh, B Sheehan.

Click to view the RTE.ie match tracker


Munster SFC: Classy Cork ease through

From the Hogan Stand web site

13 June 2009

Cork are through to the Munster final following a surprisingly comfortable 1-17 to 0-12 win over Kerry at Pairc Ui Chaoimh this evening. The Leesiders were simply awesome as they were very impressive all over the field, but none more so than Anthony Lynch, who was simply outstanding, holding Colm Cooper scoreless from play over the 70 minutes.

Cork manager Conor Counihan made two changes to the side with Ray Carey named at corner back. The versatile John Miskella recovered from the hamstring injury which forced him off early in the second half of the drawn game to line out at centre back. The towering Michael Cussen, who replaced James Masters in the first half in Killarney, is kept in reserve once again. Noel O’Leary came in for Ger Spillane.

Kerry on the other hand made a number of positional changes as Tommy Griffin went to centre field to partner Darragh O’Se, while Aidan O’Mahony slotted into centre back. Tadgh Kennelly went to wing forward as Michael Quirke lost out. Brian Sheehan came in for the injured Darren O’Sullivan, while Killian Young returned to the half back line. Donnacha Walsh had to settle for a place on the bench.

A big talking point before the game was whether or not Tommy Walsh would start and a decision was not made until just before the game and the towering full forward did pass a late fitness to take his place in the side. The game was delayed for 25 minutes as the crowd had trouble entering the grounds and this just increased the anticipation ahead of the match. When the action finally got under way, there was a number of positional switches with Graham Canty picking up Kennelly. The first score of the match came when Sheehan fielded an O’Sullivan pass and fired over in the second minute.

Almost six minutes elapsed before the next score and it was Sheehan again, this time from a placed ball after Walsh had been fouled by Michael Shields. An off the ball incident resulted in Tommy Griffin being booked and from the resultant free, Donnacha O’Connor pointed. The same player levelled matters after good work by John Miskella and in particular Anthony Lynch, who was on top of the Gooch early on.

The first goal chance of the match fell to Daniel Goulding, but Diarmuid Murphy quickly smothered the shot and James Masters’ follow up was tame. However, Goulding soon made up for the miss and the corner forward put Cork in front for the first time with a fine point of his weaker right foot. Cork were having the lions share of the possession, but by the 18th minute they had kicked four wides. A trademark run by Pierce O’Neill looked like yielding yet another goal, but this time his effort went narrowly wide as Kerry were struggling to contain the Cork forwards. O’Connor was causing problems in the full forward line and he kicked Cork’s fourth point. The fifth soon followed as Miskella raced forward to lot over and make it 0-5 to 0-2 after 22 minutes.

Then both sides had a player each sent off as Noel O’Leary and Paul Galvin were dismissed by referee Pat McEnaney in an off the ball incident. Paddy Kelly stretched Cork’s lead further with another point as the Rebels looked to be adapting to the loss of a man better than their opponents. In the 27th minute, Kerry manager Jack O’Connor made his first change when Darren O’Sullivan replaced Sheehan, a surprising move considering Sheehan was the recognised free taker. Straight away Kerry were awarded a free and Cooper slotted over to leave three between the sides. O’Connor extended the Cork lead to five points, but Kennelly responded with a good score to keep Kerry in touch, but they needed to win more possession around the middle of the park where Nicholas Murphy, Alan O’Connor and O’Neill were dominant. Goulding was then fouled by Reidy and the same player converted the free to make it 0-9 to 0-4 at half time.

O’Connor made a change at half time when David Moran replaced Mark O’Se as the Kerry manager looked to get his side back into the match. Tommy Griffin went to centre back as O’Mahony went to the wing and Young dropped back into the corner. Straight from the throw in, captain Darren O’Sullivan raced through the Cork defence and scored a fine point to rally his charges. Then, an excellent run by Declan O’Sullivan ended with another point and there was just three points between the teams. Cooper made the gap just two points when he converted a free as Kerry started the second half in emphatic style. The introduction of Moran saw Kerry won more ball in the middle of the park.

At the other end, Goulding had Cork’s first chance of the half, but his free went well wide to add to their tally of wides that was now reaching double figures. Kerry’s style of running at the Cork defence seemed to be paying off as veteran Darragh O’Se raced down the line unmarked and slotted over to put the minimum between the sides. Cork were up against it at this stage and Darren O’Sullivan fed namesake Declan who in turn passed to Walsh, but his effort was knocked out for a ’45 and Moran kicked over to level matters at 0-9 each after 44 minutes.

Then Cork got a reprieve when Goulding was fouled by Reidy and a penalty was awarded. O’Connor stepped up and excellently picked his spot to give Murphy no chance. Aidan O’Shea came on for Reidy a minute later as Cork also made a change with Fintan Gould coming on for the injured Murphy. Another Goulding free made the score 1-10 to 0-9. Miskella was then adjudged to have fouled Declan O’Sullivan and Cooper converted the 13m free to leave three between the sides once again.

Another raiding run by Darren O’Sullivan ended with the Kerry captain being fouled and for his protestations, Lynch was booked and the ball was moved to on front of the goals, giving Cooper an easy free to convert. Donnacha Walsh replaced Tommy Walsh who was clearly hampered by the ankle injury. Cork were the next to score though when Masters kicked a great point as the Leesiders kept their noses in front. Both sides made further changes as Cork introduced Paul O’Flynn for Paul Kerrigan, while Eoin Brosnan replaced Darragh O’Se at midfield. O’Flynn made an immediate impact when he kicked a point to open up a four point lead. Goulding had a great chance to kill the game off when he got through on the Kerry goal, but his effort hit the outside of the post and went wide.

The impressive Michael Shields won a free 35 metres out from goal and O’Connor kicked over to make it 1-13 to 0-11 as Cork looked to have weathered the Kerry comeback. However, Kerry kept in the hunt with another Darren O’Sullivan point. Goulding, Gould and Miskella responded for Cork as there looked no way back for the Kingdom at this stage. The rest of the match was played out at a pedestrian pace as Kerry gave up the fight. Goulding hit his fifth point in injury time

Cork: A Quirke; R Carey, M Shields, A Lynch; J Miskella, G Canty, N O’Leary; A O’Connor, N Murphy; P Kelly, P O’Neill, P Kerrigan; D Goulding, J Masters, D O’Connor. Subs Fintan Gould for Murphy 45mins; Paul O’Flynn for Kerrigan 55mins; John Hayes for Kelly 64mins; Fiachra Lynch for O’Connor 68mins.

Kerry: D Murphy, M O’Se, T O’Sullivan, P Reidy; T O’Se, A O’Mahony, K Young, D O’Se, T Griffin, T Kennelly, D O’Sullivan, P Galvin; C Cooper, T Walsh, B Sheehan. Subs: Darren O’Sullivan for Sheehan 25mins; D Moran for M O’Se half time; A O’Shea for Reidy 44mins; D Walsh for T Walsh; E Brosnan for D O’Se 56mins


Kerry will play Cork in the replay of their Munster Senior Football Championship Semi-Final on Saturday evening June 13th at 5:00pm in Pairc Ui Chaoimh.

The teams drew on Sunday last on a scoreline of Kerry 0-13 Cork 1-10.

Click here for more details of the drawn game.


Team News

KERRY (SF vs. Cork) = Diarmuid Murphy (Dingle); Marc Ó Sé (An Ghaeltacht), Tom O’Sullivan (Rathmore), Padraig Reidy (Scartaglin); Tomás Ó Sé (An Ghaeltacht), Aidan O’Mahony (Rathmore), Killian Young (Renard) ; Darragh Ó Sé (An Ghaeltacht), Tommy Griffin (Dingle); Paul Galvin (Finuge), Declan O’Sullivan (Piarsaigh Na Dromada), Tadhg Kennelly (Listowel Emmets); Colm Cooper (Dr. Crokes), Tommy Walsh (Kerins O’Rahilly’s), Bryan Sheehan (St Mary’s)
Subs: Ger Reidy (Castleisland Desmonds), Darran O’Sullivan (Glenbeigh/Glencar), Donnacha Walsh (Cromane), David Moran (Kerins O’Rahilly’s), Michéal Quirke (Kerins O’Rahilly’s), Aidan O’Shea (Glenbeigh/Glencar), Seán O’Sullivan (Cromane), Paul O’Connor (Kenmare), Eoin Brosnan (Dr. Crokes), Daniel Bohan (Austin Stacks), Maurice Corridan (Finuge), Kieran Quirke (Duagh), Barry John Walsh (Kerins O’Rahillys), Seamus Scanlon (Currow), Mike Frank Russell (Laune Rangers)

The Captain will be announced by the management Team on Saturday prior to the game.

Bainsteoir: Jack O’Connor (Piarsaigh Na Dromada)
Traenálaí: Alan O’Sullivan (Kerins O’Rahilly’s)
Roghnóirí: Ger O’Keeffe (Austin Stacks) Eamon Fitzmaurice (Finuge)

CORK (SF vs. Kerry) – Alan Quirke (Valley Rovers); Kieran O Connor (Aghada), Michael Shields (St. Finbarrs), Anthony Lynch (Naomh Aban); John Meskella (Ballincollig), Graham Canty (Bantry Blues – Captain), Ger Spillane (Ballygarvan); Alan O Connor (St. Colms), Nicholas Murphy (Carrigaline); Paddy Kelly (Ballincollig), Pearse O Neill (Aghada), Paul Kerrigan (Nemo Rangers); Daniel Goulding (Eire Og), James Masters (Nemo Rangers), Donncha O Connor (Ballydesmond)


Admission prices

Munster GAA have taken the decision to reduce the admission charge for the Cork v Kerry replay. Adult covered stand tickets can be purchased for €25, uncovered stand tickets for €20 and juveniles can gain admission for €5 to any area of the stands.


Match Preview

CORK v KERRY

Remarkably, this will be the 18th championship clash between the counties this decade.

They have already met eleven times in the Munster championship, five times in the All-Ireland semi-finals and once in the final with the outcomes running as follows:
Kerry 10, Cork 3, Draws 4

2009 – Kerry 0-13 Cork 1-10 (Munster final) Draw
2008 – Kerry 3-14 Cork 2-13 (All-Ireland semi-final) Replay
2008 – Kerry 1-13 Cork 3-7 (All-Ireland semi-final) Draw
2008 – Cork 1-16 Kerry 1-11 (Munster final)
2007 – Kerry 3-13 Cork 1-9 (All-Ireland final)
2007 – Kerry 1-15 Cork 1-13 (Munster final)
2006 – Kerry 0-16 Cork 0-10 (All-Ireland semi-final)
2006 – Cork 1-12 Kerry 0-9 (Munster final) (Replay)
2006 – Cork 0-10 Kerry 0-10 (Munster final) (Draw)
2005 – Kerry 1-19 Cork 0-9 (All-Ireland semi-final)
2005 – Kerry 1-11 Cork 0-11 (Munster final)
2004 – Kerry 0-15 Cork 0-7 (Munster semi-final)
2002 – Kerry 3-19 Cork 2-7 (All-Ireland semi-final)
2002 – Cork 0-15 Kerry 1-9 (Munster semi-final) (Replay)
2002 – Cork 0-8 Kerry 0-8 (Munster semi-final) (Draw)
2001 – Kerry 0-19 Cork 0-13 (Munster final) 2000 – Kerry 2-15 Cork 1-13 (Munster semi-final)

Fixture Details

Munster GAA Football Senior Championship Semi Final Replay
Pairc Ui Chaoimh 5.00pm Corcaigh v Ciarraí
Referee: Pat McEnaney (Muineachán)
(E.T. if Necessary)

Match Coverage

This game will be shown live on TV3.

Munster SHC S-Final – Limerick v Waterford

Limerick fight back to secure draw

Munster SHC Semi-final

Limerick 1-8 Waterford 0-11

From the GAA.ie web site

Sunday, June 14.

Limerick staged a stunning second-half comeback to secure a draw against Waterford in a dour Munster SHC semi-final clash at sodden Thurles on Sunday. Waterford led 0-9 to 0-3 at the break and appeared to be cruising to a Munster Final date with champions Tipperary. John Mullane and Eoin Kelly scored 0-4 apiece in the first 35 minutes for the Déise before a rain storm at half-time completely changed the game. Justin McCarthy’s Limerick side adapted better to the treacherous conditions and David Breen pounced for a goal within two minutes of the restart.

Slowly, they ate into Waterford’s lead and managed an equaliser late on to ensure the game went to a replay next Saturday night. Waterford were three points to the good inside eight minutes, with Mullane, Seamus Prendergast and Eoin Kelly all pitching in. Niall Moran openend Limerick’s account but they struggled to contain the Désise attack, and Kelly added two more frees to give them a four-point lead. Mullane was by now running riot and his brilliance ensured that Davy Fitzgerald’s side went in six points to the good at the interval. However, struck a fine shot past Clinton Hennessy after debutant James Ryan had made a superb run to leave the Treaty men in the ascendency. James Ryan and Moran (2) helped reduce the deficit and it was Andrew O’Shaughnessy who levelled up the game in the final minutes with a point. It looked like Limerick might have been denied what they deserved when Eoin Kelly struck for his sixth and final free of the day, but debutant Ryan had the final say when the pointed to ensure his side lived to fight another day.

The replay will take place on Saturday next June 20th at Semple Stadium Thurles.


Semple snore draw simply awful

Limerick 1-8 Waterford 0-11

By Diarmuid O’Flynn of the Irish Examiner newspaper

Monday, June 15, 2009

THANK God for replays!

After a spectacle that must surely rank with the worst ever in the Munster championship, to ask the 25,000 faithful who were in Semple Stadium yesterday to hang on for extra-time would surely have been a human rights violation. For the long-suffering fans from two counties that are far too long in hurling’s wilderness, this was a truly painful experience, each side suffering in turn. Where to start? On what had been a lovely, balmy afternoon, the first shower fell after about five minutes of the first half, by which time the signs were already there. 0-1 to no score it was that at that stage, Waterford’s lead coming courtesy of the flying Jo hn Mullane. But white-hot championship intensity this was not – the dampest of damp squibs, more like. Point by point, Waterford crept ahead, but minute by minute the quality was slipping; half-time came, eventually and Waterford were ahead by six points, (0-9 to 0-3) but it was turgid fare.

In fairness to the men in white-and-blue they were looking like a decent side, no hangover from their last championship appearance, last year’s All-Ireland final hammering by Kilkenny. Their defence was rock solid, debutants Noel Connors and Richie Foley both doing very well, as were Eoin Murphy, Declan Prendergast, Kevin Moran and centre-back Micheál ‘Brick’ Walsh; Stephen Molumphy was playing a captain’s role (joint captain, with Ken McGrath) in midfield, while wing-forwards Seamus Prendergast and Jamie Nagle helped to ensure a good supply to the inside line of Mullane, Eoin Kelly and Eoin McGrath.

Mullane in particular was superb in this half, scored four fine points from play, giving Stephen Walsh a rough introduction to Munster senior championship hurling, though the Limerick sideline can ship some criticism here for being too slow in changing Damien Reale across. Free-taker Kelly was also on target for the Déise, with four from placed balls, but he was getting no change from a fired-up Stephen Lucey. That Waterford’s half-time lead wasn’t greater was down primarily to some sterling Limerick defence, most notably by the aforementioned Dr Lucey and Brian Geary, both of them formidable down the middle. Their midfield duo of Seamus Hickey (especially) and Donal O’Grady also had the shoulder to the wheel, but up front – their attack was in a word, dreadful.

There was plenty of supply, let it be said, but of the six starting Limerick forwards, none looked remotely threatening. Three points they managed, but only one forward got on the board, Niall Moran with one from play, one from a free. Seamus Hickey had their third – what should have been an inspirational burst from midfield sadly didn’t have the desired effect. Then came half-time but it was no break, not from the rain – which actually intensified – and certainly not from the paucity of play. If anything it deteriorated, though now it was the Waterford supporters, who had travelled in their thousands, who were feeling most of the pain. Half-time saw a little silly buggers being played, Limerick first out on the pitch but left waiting in the deluge by Waterford; a few minutes of that and they decided they’d had enough, headed back to the dressing room only to meet Waterford in the tunnel, on their way out.

Waterford now took up their positions, alongside some of the hardier Limerick players who had decided to stick it out, but eventually referee Diarmuid Kirwan was forced to go hunting for the Limerick lads. Farcical. When play eventually got under way it was Limerick with the first score, and it was significant; James Ryan – another championship debutant – was the main man, and got on the end of a huge Brian Murray puckout. He made about 20m before drawing the inside cover, parting to substitute full-forward David Breen to goal. And suddenly it was game on. Well, perhaps ‘game on’ is an exaggeration, but it was a contest anyway, Limerick now just three points behind (1-3 to 0-9) despite not having hurled for 35 minutes. Now it was their turn on top, and point by point they clawed their way back, but again, minute by minute, and even as the excitement levels rose in the stands (and among the Limerick faithful especially), the fare went downhill.

James Ryan had a brace (including the final equaliser), Niall Moran repeated his return of the opening half (one from play, one from a free), while Andrew O’Shaughnessy had a single point; meanwhile, Waterford managed just two, both from placed balls by the otherwise almost anonymous Eoin Kelly. Where Waterford should have been further in front at the break, they can count themselves lucky, and very lucky, that they are still in this Munster championship today. Limerick can take credit for their fight back, and their defence especially was magnificent in the second half, Damien Reale stifling John Mullane, sub Denis Moloney having a blinder on the right wing, Mark Foley really stepping forward on the other side, while Lucey and Brian Geary continued to command the centre, one huge hit by Geary on Seamus Prendergast in the 60th minute encapsulating that dominance. They could even had won it, in the end, having shot some atrocious wides in that second half.

Really, however, this is a game where it can be said with absolute truth that neither side deserved to win. Next Saturday, same place, they get to do it all over again; for that, they can both be grateful. Hopefully, when all is said and done, we’ll all get to say the same.

Scorers for Waterford: E. Kelly 0-6 (all frees); J. Mullane (0-4); S. Prendergast 0-1.

Scorers for Limerick: N. Moran 0-4 (0-2 frees); D. Breen 1-0; J. Ryan 0-2; S. Hickey, A. O’Shaughnessy, 0-1 each.

Referee: D. Kirwan (Cork)


Limerick miss Reale opportunity

Limerick 1-8 Waterford 0-11

By Martin Breheny for the Irish Independent newspaper

Monday June 15 2009

A team that scores a total of 11 points rarely wins a hurling championship game, while a team that concedes it rarely loses. Both equations came together in Semple Stadium yesterday, leaving Limerick and Waterford unable to figure out a solution to their Munster semi-final puzzle which will see them return to Thurles for the re-match next Saturday. Surely this time it can’t be as bad. Irrespective of how much positive spin is attached about hard work and determination, the truth is that this was a game seriously lacking in quality. It was more like a first round league game where players had only just re-acquainted themselves with their hurleys after the winter break than a mid-summer championship show-down. The heavy rain which fell at the start of the game and again in the second half was a contributory factor, but it can’t be held solely responsible for the sloppiness which permeated much of the play on both sides.

The depressing facts speak for themselves. Limerick didn’t score for 11 minutes and managed just three points in the entire first half; Waterford didn’t score from open play in a second half where they landed a paltry two points; Limerick shot more wides than scores while Waterford weren’t much better. Add in the misplaced passes, the dropped catches and other basic errors and it all adds up to a game that certainly won’t be challenging for inclusion in any list of classics for this or any other year. The big question now is who can learn the most from yesterday’s experience and raise their game to the levels required to not only win the replay but also to create an impetus for the rest of the season.

Both are capable of infinitely better than this but, for whatever reason, this game never left the mediocre bay as it trundled its way to eventual parity. Limerick will feel that they got more out of it for, while their first-half performance was well below the ‘A’ game, they will be pleased with the manner in which they wiped out an interval deficit of six points (0-9 to 0-3). The revival started two minutes into the second half when sub David Breen whipped in the only goal of the day. Hopes that a goal might be the catalyst for a power surge on all fronts didn’t materialise as the rest of the half yielded just seven points, three of which came from frees. It meant that two highly-rated attacks could manage four points from play in 33 minutes, truly a shocking indictment of the standard of finishing.

Despite tying up the Waterford attack with remarkable ease, Limerick found it difficult to pick off scores at the other end. They eventually drew level with an Andrew O’Shaughnessy point in the 64th minute before Eoin Kelly pointed Waterford back into the lead with a free four minutes later. However, having battled so bravely, Limerick weren’t going to be denied and wing-forward, James Ryan fired over the equaliser just as the game ticked into stoppage time. It looked most unlikely that Waterford would be held to such a low score when they fired over five points in the first 20 minutes, a period in which Limerick’s sole response was a point from Niall Moran.

John Mullane was Waterford’s main source of mayhem, scooting in all directions from his right corner-forward base and giving Stephen Walsh a really torrid time in his first championship game. Mullane looked as if he would win the match on his own for Waterford as he helped himself to four points in the first half. Rather surprisingly, it took Limerick more than half an hour to despatch Damien Reale over to Mullane’s side, a move which proved very effective. Granted, the supply lines to Mullane weren’t nearly as clear in the second half but he still found it very hard to escape from Reale’s clutches. It raises the question as to whether Waterford might be out of the Munster championship by now had Limerick moved Reale earlier. Waterford must have felt at half-time that they were headed for a relatively easy win as Limerick had shown little to suggest they were to launch a rescue package.

EXCELLENT

They needed a good start to the second half which arrived courtesy of Breen’s goal and, from there on, they held the advantage in many sectors but most especially in defence where Reale, Stephen Lucey and the excellent Brian Geary applied the security locks so tightly that Waterford never came close to opening them. Ken McGrath made no impact at centre-forward; Seamus Prendergast was equally quiet; Eoin McGrath ran out of ideas and room and was the first to be replaced in the 44th minute; Eoin Kelly was starved of possession, leaving Mullane as the only threat. And since Reale gradually got his measure, the Waterford attack became a wasteland, rescued only by Kelly’s pointed frees in the 46th and 68th minutes. Given Waterford’s second half power failure they were fortunate that the defence stood up strong to the changed circumstances.

Corner-backs Eoin Murphy and Noel Connors were exceptionally effective while the half-backs imposed themselves too, making life difficult for the Limerick snipers. James Ryan continued to prosper for Limerick while Niall Moran got on a lot of ball but had trouble with his angles, eventually finishing up with five wides from frees and open play. Still, he scored four points which were invaluable in such a low-scoring game, although he is likely to spend some time on the practise ground this week. Both sides know that there’s a whole lot more in them and, frankly, there would need to be because a repetition of this performance would leave them seriously vulnerable to heavy defeats against better opposition.

For both sides’ sake — and indeed for the sake of the championship — it’s to be hoped that there’s a huge improvement for the replay and that a game which produced a total of 1-19 (0-8 from frees) will quickly be consigned to history and left there. It’s all it deserves.

Scorers — Limerick: N Moran 0-4 (2f), D Breen 1-0, J Ryan }0-2, S Hickey, A O’Shaughnessy 0-1 each. Waterford: E Kelly 0-6 (6f), J Mullane 0-4, S Prendergast 0-1.

Waterford — C Hennessy 7; E Murphy 8, D Prendergast 7, N Connors 8; R Foley 7, M Walsh 7, K Moran 7; S O’Sullivan 6, S Molumphy 7; S Prendergast 5, K McGrath 5, J Nagle 5; J Mullane 8, E Kelly 6, E McGrath 5. Subs: D Shanahan 5 for E McGrath (44), G Hurney for K McGrath (65), T Browne for O’Sullivan (65).

Limerick — B Murray 7; D Reale 8, S Lucey 7, S Walsh 5; M O’Riordan 6, B Geary 9, M Foley 6; D O’Grady 6, S Hickey 7; J O’Brien 5, J Ryan 7, N Moran 7; A O’Shaughnessy 5, O Moran 5, D Ryan 5. Subs: D Breen 7 for O’Brien (30); D Sheehan 6 for D Ryan (ht), D Moloney 6 for Walsh (ht).

Ref — D Kirwan (Cork)


Limerick vs. Waterford

Limerick vs. Waterford

Team News

The following is the Limerick Senior Hurling Team that takes on Waterford in the Munster Senior Hurling Championship Semi-Final on Sunday next 14th June at Semple Stadium, Thurles @ 4pm.

LIMERICK SENIOR HURLING TEAM  V.  WATERFORD 14 June ‘09

1 Brian Murray                       B. Ó Muirí                               (Patrickswell )

2 Damien Reale                      D. Ó Roghail                           (Hospital Herbertstown )

3 Stephen Lucey                    S. Ó Luasaigh                         (Croom )

4 Mark O’ Riordan                M. Ó Riordáin                         (Croom )

5 Stephen Walsh                    S. Breathnach                          (Glenroe )

6 Brian Geary                         B. Ó Gadhra                           (Monaleen )

7 Mark Foley Capt.                M. Ó Foghlu                           (Adare )

8 Donal O Grady                   D. Ó Gráda                             (Granagh Ballingarry )

9 Seamus Hickey                   S. Ó hIcí                                  (Murroe Boher )

10 James Ryan                        S. Ó Riain                               (Garryspillane )

11 Ollie Moran                        O. Ó Moráin                            (Ahane )

12 Niall Moran                        N. Ó Moráin                              (Ahane )

13 Andrew O’ Shaughnessy   A. Ó Seachnasaigh                    (Kilmallock)

14 James O’ Brien                   S. Ó Briain                              (Bruree )

15 Donie Ryan                        D.Ó Riain                                (Garryspillane )

16 David Bulfin                      D. Ó Bulfin                             (Mungret )

17 Damian Cosgrave               D. Ó Coscraigh                       (Monaleen)

18 Tomas Condon                   T. Ó Condúin                          (Knockaderry)

19 Denis Moloney                   D. Ó Maolomhnaigh               (Doon )

20 Paul Browne                      P. de Brún                               (Bruff )

21 Wayne Mc Namara            W.   Mac Conmara                  (Adare )

22 Michael O’ Brien               M. Ó Briain                             (Glenroe )

23 Donncha Sheehan              D. Ó Síocháin                         (Adare )

24 David Breen                       D. Ó Braoin                            (Na Piarsaigh )

25 Graham Mulcahy               G. Ó Maolcathaigh                 (Kilmallock )

26 Richard Mc Carthy                        R. Mac Carthaigh                    (Blackrock )

27 David Moloney                  D. Ó Maolomhnaigh               (Blackrock )

28 Patrick Tobin                      P. Ó Toibín                              (Murroe Boher )

29 Paudie Mc Namara                        P. Mac Conmara                     (Murroe Boher )

30 Eoin Foley                          E. Ó Foghlú                            (Patrickswell )

Justin Mc Carthy  Manager
Brian Ryan  Liam Garvey Selectors
Dave Mahedy Trainer
Dr Dave Boylan  Medical Doctor
Barry Heffernan Physio
Angela Hogan Massure

WATERFORD (SHC v Limerick): C Hennessy; E Murphy, D Prendergast, Noel Connors; K Moran, M Walsh, A Kearney; S O’Sullivan, S Molumphy; S Prendergast, K McGrath, J Nagle; J Mullane, E Kelly, E McGrath.

Match Preview

Friday, June 12.

From the GAA.ie web site

Justin McCarthy’s first championship game against the county he managed to three Munster titles has dominated the headlines in the build-up to this encounter.

Munster SHC Semi-final

Thurles: Limerick v Waterford, 4.00pm

McCarthy left the Deise hotseat in controversial circumstances almost exactly a year ago after Waterford’s defeat to Clare. Now, the Cork man is in charge of Limerick and will be plotting the downfall of his former charges against a Deise side managed by Clare native Davy Fitzgerald. How times can change in a year.

McCarthy will feel he has the inside knowledge required to take down Waterford. However, the St Finbarr’s clubman has been very unlucky in that a number of his players are struggling with injury.

Managerial aspects apart, there’s the memory of the thrilling All-Ireland semi-final clash in 2007 when Limerick went on a goal blitz which helped beat Waterford on a 5-11 to 2-15 scoreline.

Waterford had beaten Limerick in the Munster final the month before but found the Shannonsiders a much different proposition next time around.

This will be the 35th championship meeting between the counties with Limerick having won 20 to Waterford’s twelve while there have been two draws of the previous 34 clashes. Limerick enjoyed a great run against Waterford between 1985 and 1997 winning all five championship meetings but Waterford won three and drew one of the next five before losing the 2007 All-Ireland semi-final.

Limerick and Waterford met in the Allianz GAA Hurling National League in April with Limerick winning by 2-14 to 1-13 in the Gaelic Grounds in a game where Niall Moran scored 1-9 for the winners.

Both counties won three and lost four of their seven Division One games, finishing behind Kilkenny, Tipperary, Galway and Dublin on the table.

Brian Geary and Seamus Hickey start at centre-back and midfield respectively for Limerick despite ongoing concerns over their fitness. Hickey usually operates at corner back and has, rather unusually, been named at midfield.

Gavin O’Mahony, who is still recovering from an assault he suffered last month in Cork City, sits the game out along with Mike O’Brien and David Breen, who have been ruled out through injury.

Waterford boss Fitzgreald has caused a stir by naming Dan Shanahan on the bench, but the former Hurler of the Year has not been at his best this year and his place has gone to Jamie Nagle at wing-forward. In defence, Tony Browne is named on the bench after struggling with his fitness throughout the year.

John Mullane, who was struggling with a hamstring injury this week, gets the nod at corner forward in a deadly attack that is supplemented by Eoin Kelly and Eoin McGrath.

Ken McGrath plays at centre-forward, having played at centre-back and, less successfully, at full-back last year.

Waterford have a point to prove after last year’s disastrous showing in the All-Ireland final defeat to Kilkenny, while Limerick remain something of an unknown quantity after their poor campaign last year.

No matter what, it will be a fiery Munster Championship encounter in Thurles, with the winners set to meet either Clare or Tipperary in the final.

Verdict: Waterford

Waterford: C Hennessy; E Murphy, D Prendergast, N Connors; K Moran, M Walsh, A Kearney; S O’Sullivan, S Molumphy; S Prendergast, K McGrath, J Nagle; E McGrath, E Kelly, J Mullane.

Limerick: B Murray; D Reale, S Lucey, M O’Riordan; S Walsh, B Geary, M Foley; D O’Grady, S Hickey: J Ryan, O Moran, N Moran; A O’Shaughnessy, J O’Brien, D Ryan.

Match Preview

LIMERICK AND WATERFORD HOLD HURLING’S CENTRE STAGE

Tipperary and Cork gave the Munster GAA Hurling senior championship a great liftoff in the first round last Sunday week and all the signs are that the exciting trend will continue when Limerick and Waterford meet in the first semi-final at Semple Stadium, Thurles on Sunday (4.0).

There’s an added edge to this encounter as Limerick are managed by Justin McCarthy who was in charge of Waterford since 2002 before resigning after a player revolt following the defeat by Clare in last year’s Munster championship. Waterford manager, Davy Fitzgerald is in the unusual position of taking charge of a team for the first time in a provincial championship having already managed them in five All- Ireland championship outings after taking over from McCarthy last year. He guided Waterford to the All-Ireland final where they lost heavily to Kilkenny.

Managerial aspects apart, there’s the memory of the thrilling All-Ireland semi-final clash in 2007 when Limerick went on a goal blitz which helped beat Waterford on a 5-
11 to 2-15 scoreline. Waterford had beaten Limerick in the Munster final the month before but found the Shannonsiders a much different proposition next time around.

This will be the 35th championship meeting between the counties with Limerick having won 20 to Waterford’s twelve while there have been two draws of the previous
34 clashes. Limerick enjoyed a great run against Waterford between 1985 and 1997 winning all five championship meetings but Waterford won three and drew one of the next five before losing the 2007 All-Ireland semi-final.

Limerick and Waterford met in the Allianz GAA Hurling National League in April with Limerick winning by 2-14 to 1-13 in the Gaelic Grounds in a game where Niall Moran scored 1-9 for the winners.
Both counties won three and lost four of their seven Division One games, finishing behind Kilkenny, Tipperary, Galway and Dublin on the table.

Last Five Championship Clashes
2007: Limerick 5-11 Waterford 2-15 (All-Ireland semi-final)
2007: Waterford 3-17 Limerick 1-14 (Munster final)
2003: Waterford 1-12 Limerick 0-13 (Munster semi-final) Replay
2003: Waterford 4-13 Limerick 4-13 (Munster semi-final)
2001: Limerick 4-11 Waterford 2-14 (Munster semi-final)

Gala Senior Camogie Championship – Cork vs. Dublin

Camogie teams around the country observed a minute silence at the weekend for Joe and Anne O’Connell who died tragically in America a week ago. Anne, who played camogie in her home county of Galway also enjoyed a stint with Glen Rovers of Cork, and was remembered in Páirc Ui Rinn on Saturday before the start of the Cork versus Dublin Gala All Ireland senior championship game.

Cork manager Denise Cronin who played alongside Anne in the victorious Glen Rovers All Ireland winning club side of 1992 said it is a very emotional time for all who knew her.
“We went out to the 45 metre line and stood together as a mark of respect. This is a terribly sad time for both families and our thoughts are with them.”

Champions Cork went on to record a big win over the Blues 3-21 to 1-7, and Cronin added how important it was to get this win under their belt.

“The Cork club championship starts on Wednesday so we will only have four training sessions before our next match away to Kilkenny on July 11. That is a big game for us because if we can beat Kilkenny, to a degree, we are through to the semi-finals, but if we lose we will be under pressure in our final group game at home to Tipperary at the beginning of August.”

The Cork boss also said it gave them an opportunity to use their substitutions.

“There is a fine line between the starting 15 and players on the bench, so it afforded us the opportunity to see five subs as well. Picking the team is our hardest job because you are leaving off equally good players and you don’t want to break their confidence.”

Cork led 1-15 to 1-1 at the break with the goal coming from skipper Amanda O’Regan and in the second half majors arrived from Eimear O’Sullivan and sub Emer O’Farrell. Rachel Moloney too was in fine form hitting 0-10 with five from play. Ciara Lucey was Dublin’s best player firing their goal mid way through the opening half.


Champions Cork got their Gala All-Ireland campaign off to a flying start defeating Dublin at Páirc Ui Rinn on a score of 3-21 to 1-7. Cork skipper Amanda O’Regan led the way with the home side’s opening goal to give the Leesiders a 1-15 to 1-1 interval lead.  Ciara Lucey provided the Dublin goal midway through the half.

In the final 30 minutes as the points sailed over Cork stamped their authority on this game with two further green flags from Eimear O’Sullivan and Emer O’Farrell.


Fixture Details

Saturday June 20th
Gala Senior Camogie Championship
Cork vs. Dublin @ 3:15pm
Referee: Fintan McNamara (Clare)
Venue: Pairc Ui Rinn

Match Preview / Team News

Champions Cork welcome back Emer Dillon to the side this year in what can be seen as further strengthening their hand as they set out to defend their Gala All Ireland senior camogie title on Saturday.

After exiting the league early the Leesiders have worked away quietly and will certainly go out to make life difficult for Peter Lucey’s Dublin. Lucey, a Cork man himself, however will not be in awe and would love to spring a surprise in this first round tie.

Cork: A Murray; J O’Callaghan, R Buckley, L O’Connell; J Duffy, M O’Connor, S Hayes; O Cotter, B Corkery; E Dillon, G O’Connor, E O’Sullivan; S Burns, A O’Regan, R Moloney.

Dublin: S McCarthy; A Fitzpatrick, T Corrigan, R Ruddy; A Maguire, S Ryan, C Power; C Lucey, L Twomey; R Costello, L O’Hara, C Cooney; E Lucey, A Murphy, J Hoey.