TADHG MacCarthaigh are one victory away from the club’s first county U21 title.
Caheragh take on Donoughmore in the county U21 C football championship final this Friday evening at Páirc Uí Rinn knowing that they are 60 minutes from an historic win.
‘We don’t have an adult title to our name, we have a few minors, but we have nothing at adult county level, so it would be huge for this group to pull this off,’ explained John McCarthy of the management team that includes Sean O’Sullivan and junior captain Shane O’Driscoll.
‘We don’t make many county finals and it’s one we dearly would love to win.
‘This is our first county final at U21 grade, it’s a big deal for us and it means a lot to the people involved in the club.’
Caheragh’s U21 run began at home in West Cork at the tail end of March when they beat Áhan Gaels B (5-23 to 1-6), and they defeated Randal Óg (5-15 to 4-5) before getting the better of Clann na nGael in the final (2-15 to 0-9) when Paddy Burke scored 2-5.
Burke is one of a number of the team’s younger players, along with Dylan Murray, Micheál McCarthy, goalkeeper Brendan Keohane, Paul Keane and Eugene Daly.
A number of the Caheragh U21s also line out with the club’s juniors and were involved when they defeated Clann na nGael in the South West JAFC last weekend. Killian Murray (brother of Dylan) scored 1-4 against the Scorchers, while U21 captain Sean McCarthy, Tom Daly, defender David O’Connor, free-taker Charlie McCarthy and Eoin O’Donovan were all involved too, while Gavin Dineen, Kieran Daly and Gavin Barnett are all experienced.
‘We are in the C grade purely because of numbers,’ McCarthy explained.
‘It was 13-a-side in West Cork and the county is 15-a-side.
‘The big plus for us this year is that we had four or five lads who came up from last year’s U16s, who would have won the West Cork U16 B last year and went to the county semi-final.
‘We have a few guys up to the age, a few guys in between, a nice mix and a nice balance.
‘The standard in the county has been quite high, we’ve had two games against Cobh, a good game against St Peter’s.’
In the 2-9 to 0-10 semi-final against St Peter’s, goals from Paddy Burke and Eoin Daly were key, as they kept up their impressive goal-scoring record – they’ve scored goals in all but one championship game in this run to the county final.
Donoughmore are no slouches themselves and beat Belgooly 4-13 to 1-7 in the county series before edging past Kildorrery in the semi-final by 1-12 to 1-11.