How they got there: Bantry’s path to the final

October 22nd, 2022 9:00 AM

By Ger McCarthy

Bantry Blues' Ruairí Deane.

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The Blues remained unbeaten in championship action on their way to Sunday’s decider.


July 23, 2022 | Cork PIFC Group B: Bantry Blues 2-11 Aghada 1-9

The Blues produced a gutsy display on the first weekend of PIFC action. An entertaining Group B opener looked to be going Aghada’s way as they led by two with five minutes remaining.

Playing their first competitive championship game since relegation from the senior A grade, Bantry turned things around to win by five.

Two turning points occurred in quick succession during the first half. Aaron Berry netted an Aghada goal immediately after Ruairí Deane had rattled a crossbar at the opposite end.

Down 1-5 to 0-4 at the break, Bantry tightened up at the back and rendered their opponents scoreless for 22 minutes.

Ruairí Deane found the back of the net in the closing stages and the Blues kicked off their campaign with a morale-boosting victory.

August 13, 2022 | Cork PIFC Group B: Bantry Blues 3-11 Castletownbere 0-19

Adrigole played host to the ‘Battle of the Bay’ where Daniel Murray’s injury-time point secured the narrowest of Bantry Blues victories.

An evenly-fought encounter throughout, Ruairí Deane’s first half goal ensured the sides changed ends tied 1-6 to 0-9. An improving Bantry moved three points clear once Paddy Cronin found the net after 40 minutes.

Arthur Coakley added a third goal from the penalty spot shortly after. Creditably, Castletownbere surged into contention thanks to six unanswered points following David Daly’s (Bantry) black card.

Arthur Coakley and Fintan Fenner exchanged late scores and a draw looked the likeliest outcome in front of a large attendance.

That was until Daniel Murray intervened and kicked the winning point to move the West Cork club within one victory of reaching the PIFC’s semi-finals.


September 4, 2022 | Cork PIFC Group B: Bantry Blues 2-10 Na Piarsaigh 0-13

The West Cork club secured an automatic county semi-final berth courtesy of a workmanlike display and three-point victory over a dogged Na Piarsaigh in Dunmanway.

Paddy Cronin’s first half goal handed Bantry Blues a 1-7 to 0-6 interval lead. It was an advantage Bantry would never relinquish during a dominant second half display.

Daniel Murray raised Bantry’s second green flag shortly before the end of a game in which the Carbery side deservedly advanced to the penultimate round and Na Piarsaigh managed to retain their PIFC status.

October 1, 2022 | Cork PIFC semi-finals: Bantry Blues 3-11 Iveleary 1-16

Bantry took control of an engrossing PIFC county semi-final at Sam Maguire Park, Dunmanway, when Dara McCarthy and Arthur Coakley netted second half goals just 60 seconds apart.

Five points down with quarter of an hour remaining, Iveleary underlined their class by rattling off four unanswered scores on a day an injured Cathal Vaughan’s presence was sorely missed.

Then, a superb Bantry move involving Ruairí Deane and Paddy Cronin released Coakley to net the Blues’ third and match-winning goal after 57 minutes.

Bantry withstood a succession of late Iveleary attacks to cement a county final meeting with Kanturk on Sunday at Páirc Uí Chaoimh.

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