Winning start to Cashel’s FAI Junior Cup campaign

FAI Junior Cup 2nd Round

FAI Junior Cup 2nd Round

Cashel Town FC 2 – 0 St Kieran’s FC

The club’s seniors got their national cup campaign off to a winning start at Palmershill on Sunday, in what was a dour and at times extremely dull affair. Pitted against fourth division opposition, the club were wary of what happened at the same stage last season, when they fell to lower division opposition, and being also shorn of a host of first team regulars, were hoping to get off to a good start in the breezy conditions. However, despite having the lions share of possession, very few openings were created in the first half hour. If anything, the best chance of a goal fell to the visitors, when a mix up in the Town defence, almost caused an own goal. This shook them from their stupor, and in the final minutes of the first half, they almost broke the deadlock on a number of occasions, with one chance in particular falling to Daniel Doherty, who put the ball wide of the post, when scoring seemed an easier option. After that flurry, things went a little dead again, and the teams went to the break honours even.

Perhaps it was the advice, or more likely the raised voices of the Cashel management team at half time, but Cashel came out for the second half a more purposeful outfit. After a couple of forays into the Kieran’s final third, they finally broke the deadlock on the 50th minute, when Daniel Doherty turned neatly onto a David Horgan cross, and struck an effort against the bottom of the post, only to have his striking partner Shane Stapleton follow up with an easy tap in. This should have left Cashel cruising, but the most dramatic minutes of the game were still to come. Ten minutes before the end, in one of their few attacks, Kieran’s put through their lone striker, who was taken to ground by Cashel keeper Philly Doherty, heretofore barely a disinterested observer at the game. Doherty looked likely to also see red for his indiscretion, but the referee only brandished a yellow, to the collective sighs of the Cashel supporters.

St Kieran’s probably felt doubly aggrieved at this decision by the referee, when Doherty made amends for his initial error, and pulled off a spectacular double save from the penalty he had given away. Cashel grasped this let off with both hands, and within a minute had fashioned another defence splitting attack, ending up with Daniel Doherty, the seasons top goalscorer making up for some earlier misses, by planting a well stuck effort past the despairing hands of the opposition keeper. This was the insurance goal for Cashel, and the game petered out into an almost genteel end.