Noel Horgan Reports
THE writing was on the wall for Carbery midway through the first half of the county senior hurling championship encounter with Imokilly at Páirc Uí Rinn on Tuesday evening.
Following the tentative exchanges in the opening quarter, the teams were tied at 0-3 apiece when Carbery were reduced to 14 players with midfielder Kevin O’Donovan receiving a straight red-card in the 16th minute.
To lower the colours of the reigning champions was always going to be a tall order for the South-West men, but whatever chance they had of upsetting the odds disappeared once they became numerically disadvantaged in that opening half.
In any event, the game swung irrevocably in Imokilly’s favour as the first half wore on. After forging 0-12 to 0-7 ahead before at the interval, they piled on the punishment in earnest on the resumption, leaving hapless Carbery trailing in their wake.
It was impressive stuff from the title-holders, as was acknowledged by Carbery manager Charlie Vaughan, who revealed he was quietly confident of success heading into the match.
‘I came up believing that if we got our A-game going and had the bit of luck, we’d be capable of doing the business, but losing a player early on was something we simply couldn’t afford against a team of Imokilly’s class,’ he said.
‘I thought the sending-off was harsh, so I’m very disappointed with the way things worked out, but I thought our lads gave it everything, they died on their feet out there, and we are going home tonight with heads high,’ insisted the St Colum’s clubman.
Carbery certainly couldn’t be faulted for lack of effort. They didn’t look out of their depth in the first quarter, although it took an excellent save by goalkeeper Denis Dullea to deny Imokilly’s Dan Mangan a goal in the fifth minute.
Darragh Coakley and Gearoid O’Donovan were both on target from play for Carbery before Imokilly got the bit between their teeth to firmly stamp their authority on the proceedings.
Paudie Butler, Gearoid O’Donovan and Cathal O’Donovan added further points from play for Carbery before the break, but it’s a measure of their general limitations that free-taker John Michael O’Callaghan was their sole marksman in the second half.
Gearoid O’Donovan had a fine game for Carbery, while Sean Crowley, who stood out, James Hurley and Conor O’Driscoll comprised their strongest line in front of flawless custodian Denis Dullea.
Imokilly: D Dalton 0-9 (4f, 1 sideline), Brian Lawton, Barry Lawton, M O’Keeffe 0-3 each, P O’Sullivan, D Mangan, J Cronin, S Hegarty, S O’Regan, B Cooper 0-1 each.
Carbery: JM O’Callaghan 0-5 (4f, 1 65), G O’Donovan 0-2, D Coakley, P Butler, C O’Donovan 0-1 each.
Imokilly: D O’Callaghan (Watergrasshill); M Russell (Aghada), C Barry (Castlelyons), G Millerick (Fr O’Neill’s); C O’Brien (St Ita’s), B Cooper (Youghal), J Cronin (Lisgoold); S Hegarty (Dungourney), M O’Keeffe (Fr O’Neill’s); Brian Lawton (Castlemartyr), D Dalton (Fr O’Neill’s), Barry Lawton (Castlemartyr); P O’Sullivan (Cloyne), D Mangan (St Catherine’s), B Dunne (Fr O’Neill’s).
Subs: S O’Regan (Watergrasshill) for Dunne (38), K Histon (Cobh) for Millerick (injured, 47), D Harrington (Fr O’Neill’s) for Cronin (injured, 51), C Broderick (do.) for Hegarty (51), K Dennehy (Cloyne) for O’Sullivan (55).
Carbery: D Dullea (Kilbree); S Crowley (Diarmuid Ó Mathunas), J Hurley (Kilbrittain), C O’Driscoll (St Oliver Plunkett’s); P Crowley (Diarmuid Ó Mathunas), P Butler (Argideen Rangers), B O’Donovan (Kilbree); K O’Donovan (Diarmuid Ó Mathunas), C O’Donovan (Argideen Rangers); D McCarthy (Kilbree), JM O’Callaghan (Argideen Rangers), G O’Donovan (Diarmuid O’Mathuna’s); P Wall (Kilbrittain), D Coakley (Kilbree), J Sheehan (Argideen Rangers).
Subs: D O’Donovan (Argideen Rangers) for McCarthy (ht), K O’Donovan (St James) for Wall (47), N O’Donovan (Kilbrittain) for P Crowley (47), D Coffey (Kilbree) for C O’Donovan (47), M Evans (St James) for Coakley (56).
Referee: N Wall (Ballincollig).
The clocks have gone forward and the longer evenings have finally arrived which can only mean one thing – the lawn mowers are out. A wealth of knowledge is on hand at Bandon Co-Op’s three stores in Bandon, Enniskeane and Kinsale thanks to each of their in-store experts who are there to share their vast experience