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Can Kilmurry silence Cliffords in Munster junior football final?

December 10th, 2022 12:30 PM

By Matthew Hurley

Kilmurry joint captains William Ronan and Fionn Warren lift the trophy after their victory over Cobh in the Bon Secours Junior A Football Championship final.

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BY MATTHEW HURLEY

CAN Muskerry champions Kilmurry do what only one other team has managed in 2022 – defeat Davd Clifford in a knock-out championship game?

Muskerry kingpins Kilmurry have won their first adult county championship in 36 years. Their amazing campaign will continue this Sunday, 11th, at 1pm as they face Fossa from Kerry in the Munster junior club football final in Mallow. 

Cormac Linehan’s side started their campaign back on July 15th with a convincing win over Clondrohid (1-14 to 0-6) and now find themselves coming face to face with two of the biggest GAA stars in the country, the Clifford brothers, David and Paudie. Footballer of the Year David has lost only one knockout game in 2022, the Sigerson Cup final with UL in February.

‘It’s been a very positive season,’ Cormac Linehan said.

‘The players are enjoying it, the club are enjoying it and it’s a great buzz for the whole place.’

 

Kilmichael, Dripsey, Éire Óg’s second string and Canovee all fell by the wayside to a rampant Kilmurry as a divisional final against Aghinagh was lined up. Linehan’s troops ended up winning by eight points (3-10 to 1-8). Padraig Berhanu (2-2) and Liam Wall (1-3) scores were vital.

That win not only meant they were kingpins of Muskerry, a very tough division to get out of, but in the year that was in it were also promoted to the county Premier JFC for 2023.

Linehan’s side then had a chance to test themselves against the majority of these sides before next year. Good practice, but they also sensed an opportunity to achieve even more success this season. 

After beating Carbery champions’ St James, they blitzed Beara’s Urhan by leading 1-7 to nil at half time. The final against Imokilly side Cobh was statistically the Muskerry victor’s easiest win in the county series, 1-12 to 0-8. In a match where Berhanu hit the net again, a late surge powered them home. They were on their way to represent Cork in Munster.

By scoring two goals through Padraig Berhanu and David McCarthy, they came out on top against Thurles Sarsfield from Tipperary in the provincial semi-final, winning by five points.

Liam Wall has been a threat the whole year, scoring 3-26 in their championship venture, 3-23 from play. Padraig Berhanu has been the goal getter, scoring seven in total, while William Buckley, Ryan Leahy and James O’Mullane have also contributed largely.

Up next is their biggest challenge yet.

‘Right through the team, Fossa are very strong. The two Cliffords are two of the best footballers in the country. It’s a headache to have to deal with them, but it’s great for us to have that headache. We’ll have a go off it and see what happens,’ Linehan admitted.

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