John Bubbles O'Dwyer who scored 10 points for Killenaule in their win over Ballingarry at Monroe on Sunday evening in the South Senior Hurling Championship.
South Tipperary Senior Hurling Championship Round 2
KILLENAULE 1-23 BALLINGARRY 2-12
A more skilful and physically stronger Killenaule side kept their South Senior Hurling Championship ambitions alive with an eight points victory over neighbours Ballingarry at Monroe on Sunday evening.
Smarting from being edged out by Mullinahone for an automatic place in the knockout stages of the County Championship last weekend, Killenaule kept their only avenue back to the race for the Dan Breen Cup alive with this sucess. Now needing to win the South division title to get back into the county race, Killenaule had the measure of Ballingarry all through despite a spirited performance by the men in maroon.
On a greasy surface and played in a constant soft mist, conditions were difficult for slick hurling. If never quite getting to the famed red-hot intensity at which these neighbours have often done in the past, but both still sides served up an enjoyable encounter, especially in the first half at the end of which ‘The Robins’ led by 1-10 to 1-8.
But it was after the interval that Killenaule took control and with Dean O’Connor scoring four points from play and John O’Dwyer clocking up the frees Killenaule never looked in any real danger of not producing the expected result. A goal from Ballingarry midway through the second half, scored by the just-introduced sub Philip Ivors, restored parity at 1-14 to 2-11, but quickly the chance of a major shock subsided, Ballingarry adding just one point in the concluding 17 minutes of the game.
It was point for point in the first 10 minutes or so with Ballingarry taking the lead in the 11th minute with a goal by Adrian Cleere after a fine run by the impressive Dylan White who unselfishly squared the sliothar for Cleere to squeeze under Jonathan Gleeson for a 1-2 to 0-4 lead. And helped on by some excellent free-taking by Ian Ivors at centre-field Ballingarry were still ahead by two as half-time approached, leading by 1-8 to 0-9.
But with just a minute to go to the break Killenaule strung together a sweet move involving Michael Doyle and John O’Dwyer to set up Declan Fanning, and using all of his experience the former Tipp senior All-Ireland medal winner beat James Logue to the pull for a one point lead. A long range point on the stroke of half-time by Daniel Guinan doubled Killenaule’s lead at the break, but Ballingarry scarcely deserved to be behind such was their first half effort.
The sides went point for point almost in the opening 12 minutes of the second period, Dylan Walsh’s point in particular a superb effort from distance under pressure. Killenaule were three to the good before Philip Ivors, on just four minutes, got on to the end of a long delivery from Trevor Ivors to blast low to the Killenaule net. It was now all square and a rousing closing quarter was briefly anticipated.
From the resultant puck-out Tony Doyle nudged Killenaule ahead again and a further four unanswered points had the Kenneth Browne managed side comfortably ahead before Ian Ivors briefly stemmed the flow with his side’s last point of the game with seven minutes to go.
A further four unanswered points from Killenaule, including fine efforts, including one apiece from Eoin O’Connell and Dean O’Connor (who scored four from play overall) saw Killenaule safely home and the game peter out as a contest.
The strength down the middle for Killenaule was decisive with Joe O’Dwyer at centre-back commanding, John Bubbles O’Dwyer (with 10 points, including eight frees), Declan Fanning and Dean O’Connor most prominent.
Ballingarry, already in a struggle to retain senior status after finishing bottom of their Seamus O Riain Cup group, put in an honest hour’s work but lost out in the end to their craftier opponents particularly in the final quarter where Killenaule’s physical strength became more imposing.
In defence for Ballingarry captain Dickie Norton, John Walsh and Paul Butler stood up, Ian Ivors and Adrian Cleere worked tirelessly around the middle while Dylan Walsh looked the most threatening in open play in the forward line.
Killenaule: Jonathan Gleeson, Stephen Browne, Paddy Codd, Jimmy Feehan, Killian O’Dwyer, Joe O’Dwyer, Johnny Grace, Eoin O’Connell (0-2), Michael Doyle (0-1), Daniel Guinan (0-1), John O’Dwyer (0-10, 0-8F), Dean O’Connor (0-4), Paidi Feehan, Declan Fanning (1-2), Tony Doyle (0-1).
Subs: Niall O’Dwyer for T. Doyle, Stephen Hannigan for Guinan, Tom Stakelum for Fanning; Gus Browne for P. Feehan.
Ballingarry: James Logue, John Walsh, Dickie Norton, Sean Doheny, Ciaran Shelly, Paul Butler, Jack Fennelly; Daniel Fennelly, Ian Ivors (0-7, 0-4F, 0-1x65), Trevor Ivors, Adrian Cleere (1-1), Padraig Hayes, Richard Butler (0-1), Dylan Walsh (0-2), Eamon Tuohy (0-1).
Subs: Philip Ivors (1-1) for Trevor Ivors; Fiachra Scott for D. Fennelly; Patrick Walton for Hayes.
Referee: Noel Cosgrove (Marlfield).