CLONMEL TOWN 0 ATHENRY 1
A goal midway through the opening half proved decisive as Galway and District League champions Athenry FC ended Clonmel Town’s dreams of FAI Junior Cup glory for another season at the Dr. Pat O’Callaghan Complex, Clonmel last Saturday.
It was a tie with not too many clear-cut chances, and throughout a tense game Athenry looked very comfortable at the back. The only way a Clonmel Town side, still suffering from the Munster Junior Cup shock exit six days earlier, looked like scoring was from a set-piece. Athenry took the lead midway through the first half from a mix-up saw the normally reliable ‘keeper Richard Ryan spill the ball out of his hands for the Athenry forward to pounce and put it on a plate for inrushing midfielder Benny Lawless to finish with a well controlled shot.
Town started the second half brightly but Athenry defended well and were very dangerous on the break. They nearly wrapped up the tie when Benny Lawless hit a well struck shot off the inside of the post that was eventually cleared. Clonmel Town pushed on for the equaliser with a string of corner kicks, and the best chance came with ten minutes left when a scramble in the box led to a shot being smashed against the crossbar by Mickey Comerford but the rebound was cleared and with it went Town’s hopes of national glory for another season.
With the Athenry ‘keeper and back four faultless throughout the 90 minutes, the Galway outfit held on to book a place in the quarter-final away to Pike Rovers.