Donohill hold on in hectic finish to lift Shield title for first time

Shield Division 4 Final

Shield Division 4 Final

DONOHILL & DISTRICT FC 3

ST. KIERAN’S FC 2

Donohill and District FC made club history by etching their name for the first time on the Division 4 Shield after holding on against St. Kieran’s of Cahir by the odd goal in five at a picturesque Celtic Park, Bansha last Sunday.

Played in ideal conditions, this may not have been a game for the purist but it lacked little else, with both sides refusing to give an inch in a contest that saw Donohill take a commanding 3-0 lead. However a revival midway through the second half by a St. Kieran’s side that refused to lie down kept this game on a knife edge right up to the final whistle.

Unfortunately for all the supporters that paid their hard earned cash to watch it was difficult to make out the numbers on the Donohill side, with black numbers on blue shirts, but the Division 4 League leaders applied the early pressure, with a Ger O’Neill shot following a corner kick forcing the St. Kieran’s ‘keeper Eddie Kenrick to dive low to divert the ball away to safety after 11 minutes. St. Kieran’s had their chances too, with Aidan Keating skimming the crossbar after hitting a first-time shot following a poor clearance after 16 minutes.

Donohill deservedly got the breakthrough on the half-hour mark. St. Kieran’s failed to clear their lines properly and when the ball was returned into the box Keith Sheridan got the finishing touch. Six minutes later it was 2-0 when Ger O’Neill shrugged off two tackles before curling the ball out of the reach of the ‘keeper into the top corner of the goal. Five minutes before the break Donohill lost scorer Keith Sheridan through injury and he was replaced by Thomas McLoughlin.

Donohill made the more positive start to the second half and this game looked done and dusted after 51 minutes when they made it 3-0. A move up the right flank saw Ger O’Neill find the overlapping Sean O’Dwyer, whose shot was parried by Saints goalie Eddie Kendrick into the path of the inrushing substitute Thomas McLoughlin, who fired home from six yards.

St. Kieran’s, however, don’t know when to give up and while most people would have been thinking about making an early exit the Cahir side’s loyal band of supporters stayed and saw their side get right back into this tie with two goals in a three-minute spell. After 57 minutes St. Kieran’s got their first when Tony Donoghue slid the ball home when he capitalised on a misplaced pass inside the six yard box. When Donohill’s Ger O’Neill could only find the side-netting with the goal at his mercy the ball was quickly returned to the other end of the pitch and from Brian Cahill’s cross half-time substitute Paul Hayes get between defender and ‘keeper to head home from 2 yards to leave just a goal between the sides with 15 minutes still to play.

It was game on again as St. Kieran’s went in search of an equaliser and a rattled Donohill side were forced to concede ground. Driven on by Shane Ferris and Shane O’Neill in the middle of the park chances were teed up for St. Kieran’s, but a combination of goalmouth clearances or failure to turn those opportunities into the goals proved costly. Donohill, beaten in last season’s final by Dualla, held on against that late onslaught were delighted to hear the final whistle.

Donohill and District FC - Tom Carr, Sean O’Dwyer, Alan Shanahan, Pa Aherne, Michael O’Neill, Keith Sheridan, Michael Buckley, Ray Barry, Keith Fox, Brian Fox, Ger O’Neill.

Subs used - Thomas McLoughlin and Dinny Crosse.

St. Kieran’s FC - Eddie Kenrick, Brian Cahill, Jason Allen, Paul Darcy, Kevin Murray, Shane Ferris, Shane O’Neill, Aidan Keating, James Scanlon, Tony Lonergan, Tony Donoghue.

Subs used - Matthew Darcy, Paul Hayes and Michael Darcy.

Officials - B. O’Donoghue, J. O’Dwyer and J. Walsh.