16 Jun 2016

Kilmuckridge break records and the scoreboard

0 Comment

Kilmuckridge 10-14 Rathangan 1-1

Within the opening minutes of this Allianz Cumann na mBunscol Rackard League Roinn A hurling final it was clear that something special was happening. In just four minutes, Kilmuckridge had four goals on the board and from this they went on to open up a gigantic lead that would only grow further over the hour.

One could only feel for Rathangan who had rightly earned a place in their second top grade final of the year, but once again met an exceptional Kilmuckridge team. Before the match, the form book pointed towards the two team’s performances against Ferns earlier in the competition. Kilmuckridge did well to get a result against the Enniscorthy District boys that day but Rathangan comfortably defeated the same team in their semi-final and by this logic a closer final was suggested. Few would have predicted the devastating manner in which they would take the title and add to their already impressive haul of Cumann na mBunscol titles won earlier in the season.

This time last year, much of the same Kilmuckridge team beat Ramsgrange in a nervy Roinn C final. This time round there were no nerves as the Kilmuckridge boys dominated proceedings from pillar to post. In defence they were solid and extremely disciplined throughout, not only winning ball repeatedly in the air and on the ground, but also confidently playing intelligent ball up to their forwards. There was little for the Kilmuckridge goalkeeper to do as Rathangan found it desperately hard to create a chance faced with these conditions.

In midfield and attack, the Kilmuckridge boys were industrious and elusive in their movement and uncatchable once they got the ball in hand. Many of their scores came not just from skilful play, but from creating space with simple twists and turns that the Wexford County Board coaches are currently promoting through the medium of Fundamental Movement Skills. By halftime, all bar one of the midfield and forwards had scored and this opened up a frighteningly large thirty point lead.

The second half brought an inevitable decline in the pace of the game and some changes of personnel on the winning team. The players who came on for Kilmuckridge certainly did not weaken their efforts by any means and in fact many of these replacements either scored or were involved in further good play. With three minutes remaining, a tenth Kilmuckridge goal caused confusion when even the electronic scoreboard could not cope with their scoring. It’s worth noting that this panel of players also only represented a larger successful group that had also taken another county title through winning the ‘B’ team competition.

Rathangan bravely rallied the troops and refused to give in when many others would have and were rewarded in the second half with a well taken goal and a pointed free for their efforts. Despite their clear frustrations, they also conceded very few scorable frees over the hour. For this talented group of dual stars, there will undoubtedly be more ‘A’ finals and opportunities for success if they keep up their good work on the training field.

After the match, captains Michael Butler and Brian O’Meara gracefully accepted the ‘Roinn A’ and ‘B team competition’ cups on behalf of their teammates and kicked off the celebrations on what has been a fantastic year for the Buffers Alley boys. Not since Tom Dempsey was in short trousers has the Nicky Rackard cup come back to Ballinstraw so these history breakers deserve all the plaudits they get.

Kilmuckridge: Adam Back, Seán Kirwan, Edward Harney, Fiachra Fortune, Dylan McEvoy, Jack Twomey, Kevin O’Connor, Shamey O’Hagen, Eoin O’Meara, Tomás Whelan, Jack Redmond, Harvey Warren, Cormac Walsh, Michael Butler, Stephen Furlong, Darragh Prendergast, Padraig Kinsella, Bryan Kirwan, Kevin Doyle, Bobby Brady, Conor Keane, John Bourke

Rathangan: Shane Ryan, Páidí Doyle, Michael Cullen, JJ Harpur, Rory Byrne, Rory O’Brien, Eoin Staples, Liam Berry, Darren Moore, Finn Ryan, Cathal Murphy, Andrew Moran, Liam Whelan, Jack O’Brien, Conan Philips, Brad Walsh, Cian Doyle, Dáire Heaney, Mogue Cleary, Martin Kearns, Ruairí Flannery, Dylan Moran