Eire Óg made heavy weather defeating Kickhams 0-17 to 0-13 in the Tipperary Co-Op SuperValu senior hurling championship semi-final at Cappawhite on Saturday evening.
They were favourites going into the game but had to line out without a number of players and their challenge suffered accordingly.
Kickhams had by far the better of the opening quarter. They were faster to the ball, more efficient in what they did and appeared to by the mored focused side. They led by six points to two at the after eighteen minutes.
Eire Óg made an important change in the twenty-second minute when they brought on Donal O’Dwyer in place of Patrick Aherne. He made an immediate impact creating quite a bit of bother for his opponent and the other ickhams backs. In the remaining time Eire Óg came much more into the game and scored three points without reply from Kickhams to trail by a point, 0-5 to 0-6, at the interval.
Eire Óg continued their good run after the interval and notched up five points in theopening six minutes as against a point by Kickhams. The next big development was the red carding of Mic hael Heelan after ten minutes.
As so often happens in these situations the sending off had a greater effect on Kickhams than Eire Óg. In the course of the next five minutes they scored four unanswered points to go a point ahead, 0-11 to 0-10.
However, that was as good at it got for Kickhams. Eire Óg gradually recovered their composure and scored seven points to Kickhams’ two in the final seventeen minutes. (The referee added on six minutes for stoppages.)
Not the greatest of games, very much of the stop-start variety. Eire Óg got good performances from Donal O’Dwyer, Ronan O’Brien, Paudie O’Dwyer, Eoin Bradshaw and Kev Fox. For Kickhams Michael Shanahan, Paul O’Dwyer, Nigel Hayes and Davy Butler were best.
Eire Óg: Darragh Mooney, Michael O’Dwyer, Richard Ryan, Philip McGrath, Diarmuid Ryan, Conor O’Brien (0-1), Kev Fox, Tom Fox (0-2), Ronan O’Brien (0-4), Patrick Aherne, Paudie O’Dwyer (0-5), Patrick Horan (0-1), Seanie Ryan, Damien O’Brien, Eoin Bradshaw (0-2). Subs: Donal O’Dwyer (0-1) for Patrick Aherne, John Quinn (0-1) for Damien O’Brien, Mikey McGrath for Eoin Bradshaw.
Kickhams: Paddy Ryan, Michael Shanahan, Eoin Carew, James Shanahan, Damien McGrath, Michael Heelan, Johnny Ryan, Paul O’Dwyer (0-4), Alan Horgan (0-3), Paudie Slattery, Nigel Hayes, Padraing Hayes, Aidan Heeney, Brian Horgan, David Butler (0-6). Subs: Jerry Horgan for Johnny Ryan, Brendan Ryan for Aidan Heeney, Darragh Browne for Paudie Slattery.
Referee: Anthony Sherlock (Kildangan)