AIB Munster Junior Club Hurling Championship Final – Mayfield (Cork) 2-18 Ballyduff Lower (Waterford) 3-10

Mayfield (Cork) defeated Ballyduff Lower (Waterford) by 2-18 to 3-10 in the AIB Munster Junior Club Hurling Championship Final on Sunday December 4th at Mallow.

Majestic Mayfield reign supreme

Report by Therese O’Callaghan for the Irish Examiner newspaper

Mayfield (Cork) 2-18 Ballyduff Lower (Waterford) 3-10

Mayfield have joined the elite band of clubs to win the Munster junior hurling championship after the Cork side reigned supreme in Mallow yesterday.

Writing themselves into the history books, they collected the Nealon Cup for the first time. The trophy remains on in the Rebel county following Dungourney’s success in 2015.

And there was no doubting the winners’ supremacy, as they delivered a powerful performance on the big stage. This was their greatest test to date in the provincial competition, but they were primed. They were at their very best, excelling, particularly in the second-half.

Their fitness and speed enabled them to run at the Ballyduff Lower defence at every opportunity. They were comfortable victors, but credit to the Déise side, they remained resilient to the finish, clawing back some of the deficit with two late goals.

Minus regular wing-back Gavin Looney due to work commitments, the outstanding David O’Neill set the tone for Mayfield with a blistering goal after just eight minutes. The wing-forward was cleverly picked out by his opposite wing Shane Kelly.

However, Ballyduff Lower were equal to the challenge and were on level terms at the end of the opening quarter when Jack Lyons managed to squeeze the sliotar past Richard O’Keeffe, 1-4 apiece.

The Waterford champions then edged ahead through the accuracy of free-taker Brian Power, but Mayfield wrestled back the initiative when the hard-working Shane Duggan managed to kick to the net on 19 minutes. The Cork representatives went on to outscore their opponents five points to two on the approach to half-time. Nicky Kelly found the range with some excellent frees, while Power, Eoin Cummins and Declan Cheasty were on target for Ballyduff Lower. Mayfield led 2-10 to 1-8 at the change of ends.

With both sides wearing their county colours due to a clash of jerseys, Mayfield took the game to Ballyduff Lower after the restart. O’Neill and Nicky Kelly exchanged points with Power and Calum Lyons but once Mayfield hit their stride there was no stopping them.

The Waterford outfit were also undone by indiscipline with yellow cards issued in quick succession to full-back John O’Leary and centre-back Calum Lyons. With 10 minutes remaining, Mayfield had raced 2-15 to 1-10 clear courtesy of points from Shane Duggan, Kevin Punch and Nicky Kelly – the contest almost decided.

Superb all over the field they were, with five-star performances from all six defenders who ably negated the attacking threat of Ballyduff Lower, especially their danger-man and former county star, Jack Kennedy.

However, as the clock counted down into the final five minutes, the two teams were reduced to 14 men. Both Brian O’Learys received straight red cards from referee Damien Fox – the Ballyduff Lower player only a couple of minutes on the field.

Despite Kennedy and Adam Carroll goaling for Ballyduff Lower in the 56th and 63rd minutes, and the magnificent Nicky Kelly blasting a penalty off the crossbar, Mayfield were in command. Their final score from play brought a huge cheer as Patrick Duggan kicked the sliotar over the bar.

Scorers for Mayfield: N Kelly (0-10, 0-6 frees), D O’Neill (1-4), S Duggan (1-2), K Punch and P Duggan (0-1 each).

Scorers for Ballyduff Lower: Brian Power (0-5 frees), J Kennedy (1-1), J Lyons and A Carroll (1-0 each), C Lyons, C Dunphy, D Cheasty and E Cummins (0-1 each).

MAYFIELD: R O’Keeffe; K Brosnan, D Lucey, B O’Leary; C O’Sullivan, S O’Donovan (Capt), G Lehane; K Punch, D Hayes; S Kelly, N Kelly, D O’Neill; S Duggan, D Malone, P Duggan.
Subs: K Walsh for K Punch (58).

BALLYDUFF LOWER: M Atkins; M De Paor, J O’Leary (Capt), M Millea; Bryan Power, C Lyons, P Kennedy; C Power, Brian Power; J Lyons, J Kennedy, C Dunphy; D Reade, D Cheasty, E Cummins.
Subs: R Coffey-O’Shea for E Cummins (40), B O’Leary for D Cheasty (51), A Carroll for J Lyons (60)

Referee: Damien Fox (Clare)


AIB Munster Junior Club Football Championship Final – Glenbeigh/Glencar (Kerry) 2-16 Gabriel Rangers (Cork) 0-10

Glenbeigh-Glencar (Kerry) defeated Gabriel Rangers (Cork) by 2-16 to 0-10 in the AIB Munster Junior Club Football Championship Final on Sunday December 4th at Mallow.

Glenbeigh-Glencar regroup to keep Kerry’s title grip

Report by Denis Hurley for the Irish Examiner newspaper

Glenbeigh/Glencar (Kerry) 2-16 Gabriel Rangers (Cork) 0-10

While last weekend’s Mid-Kerry SFC semi-final defeat to Beaufort wasn’t an enjoyable experience for Glenbeigh-Glencar, it did at least prove to be fuel for a response in the Munster Club JFC final yesterday.

A ninth win in a row for Kerry representatives in this championship was never really in doubt once a healthy early lead was augmented by goals from Caolim Teahan and Kieran Courtney to give them a 2-7 to 0-5 half-time lead.

The way his team bounced back from the 2-14 to 0-17 loss to Beaufort heartened manager Aidan O’Shea.

“We were very disappointed, we were beaten convincingly on the day,” he said. “We kicked 17 points and we played poorly, we weren’t working the ball well. I don’t know if it was the reason we won today but it probably didn’t hurt to focus the minds for today.”

As the Kerry champions hit the ground running, their Cork opponents couldn’t find the fluency which had brought them to this stage. Goals at vital times had been the currency of the Ballydehob/Schull side, but they found themselves frustrated.

“We thought that they’d bring a man back,” O’Shea said, “so we decided to park a man in front of the full-back. The boys inside are very dangerous so we didn’t want easy ball going into them.”

The closest sight that Gabriels got of goal was in the 23rd minute, after Gavan O’Grady’s excellent point had followed Caolim Teahan’s opening goal to make it 1-7 to 0-3. Captain Mark Cronin found Eddie Goggin, who had scored ten goals this year, but under pressure from full-back Jeremiah Hoare – not all legal, Gabriels felt – he screwed his shot wide.

Seán Kelleher did point a free after that to bring them back to within six points, but immediately after that they were cut open as Darran O’Sullivan and O’Grady linked up to allow Kieran Courtney to find the net.

A Cronin free just before half-time gave hope to the sizeable Gabriels support among the 3,118 present, but an eight-point interval deficit was to extend further on the resumption as Tommy Cahill’s free was followed by O’Grady points, the first of these following a good win from the excellent delivery by the tireless Danny O’Sullivan.

From such a position, Glenbeigh-Glencar never looked like being shaken and sub Daniel Griffin might have got a third goal on the three-quarter mark only to fire across the face.

Gabriels needed a goal and sub Ronan Roycroft had a half-chance well dealt with by Rory O’Connor, with the goalkeeper then doing well to prevent Kelleher getting on the end of Gerard O’Callaghan’s ball in.

With subs Bernard Murphy and Pádraig Griffin coming on to add to the Glenbeigh-Glencar tally, they saw out the game in the commanding fashion they had started it. Captain Colin McGillycuddy and Fergal Griffin at midfield laid the foundation and though an early two-point lead was wiped out by Gabriels, four in a row – Cahill with two and O’Grady and Teahan also on target as Darran O’Sullivan dictated play – gave them a cushion.

Cronin did pull one back for Gabriels, but then Danny O’Sullivan, O’Grady and Courtney moved the ball at pace to set up Teahan. From there, they pushed on convincingly. More silverware could follow in the spring.

Scorers for Glenbeigh-Glencar: G O’Grady (0-7, 1 free), T Cahill (0-6, 4 frees), Caolim Teahan (1-1), K Courtney (1-0), P Griffin, B Murphy (0-1 each).

Scorers for Gabriel Rangers: M Cronin (0-6, 3 frees), S Kelleher (0-2, frees), G O’Callaghan, C Moynihan 0-1 each.

GLENBEIGH-GLENCAR: R O’Connor; S Roche, J Hoare, C Doyle; J Brosnan, P Kilkenny, S O’Sullivan; C McGillycuddy, F Griffin; T Cahill, Darran O’Sullivan, Caolim Teahan; K Courtney, G O’Grady, Danny O’Sullivan
Subs: D Griffin for Brosnan (39), V Hoare for Roche (41), B Murphy for Danny O’Sullivan (50), P Griffin for Darran O’Sullivan (53), D McGillycuddy for Doyle (57, black card), Calvin Teahan for Courtney (57).

GABRIEL RANGERS: D O’Mahony; K O’Callaghan, C Newman, J Donegan; L Hegarty, R Moynihan, G O’Callaghan; D O’Sullivan, S O’Mahony; F Hurley, C Moynihan, E O’Brien; M Cronin, E Goggin, S Kelleher
Subs: S Evans for O’Brien (30), P Hegarty for O’Sullivan (38), R Roycroft for L Hegarty (42, black card), D Roycroft for Donegan (58), W Cronin for Hurley (60).

Referee: S Lonergan (Tipperary)