Historic day for Killenaule GAA club as they secure first ever appearance in a county football final

Eamon Lacey


Eamon Lacey



Historic day for Killenaule GAA club as they secure first ever appearance in a county football final

Tony Doyle gets his pass away despite the attentions of Stephen Quirke in the county football semi final in Cahir.

Killenaule ..................2.16

Moyle Rovers.............. 1.18

On a magnificent day for the Killenaule club their footballers secured their first ever appearance in a county football final after an absorbing duel that had to be settled in a period of extra time with the Robins holding out by a point.

It was an historic day for Killenaule, founded in 1885, to reach a county football final  for the first time after digging deep to see off Moyle Rovers in a thrilling contest in Cahir.

"Outrageous,absolutely outrageous"  said an  exhausted Kieran Bergin at the final whistle  when asked to put into  words what he and his heroic colleagues had just achieved out on the field.

The players, drained after coming out on top in a titanic battle with Moyle Rovers were swarmed by jubiliant supporters basking in the glory of the occasion.

Killenaule can now look forward to  taking on Clonmel Commercials in the football showpiece in two weeks time.

It was an incredible game  packed with drama, superb scores and super saves but most of all it was the sheer grit of both teams who had to stage stirring comebacks during an epic contest  that stood out.

It took a replay to separate the teams in recent weeks in the south championship and there was nothing between the teams again  onSunday.

Killenaule, who looked out on their legs, at the final whistle  after Moyle Rovers, who could have been nine points down but for a superb save from Ciaran Kenrick, staged a  spirited comeback to force the game to extra time.

Four scores from the impressive Liam Boland,assisted by great work from David McGrath, and a brace from  Shane Foley levelled  the game for Moyle Rovers .Paudi Feehan scored only Killenaules third point of the second half but it looked like  it would be just enough to get Killenaule over the line but  in injury time Liam Boland popped up for Rovers again   to force the game into the extra  time .

At that point all the momentum seemed to be with Moyle Rovers   but they wasted early chances hitting three wides before Killenaule , inspired by Declan Fanning and Kieran Bergin in midfield,  went on to score five unanswered points  to put themselves in a commanding position.

Liam Boland pointed another free but it still left Rovers four adrift aft half time of  the extra time.Rovers pulled one  back inthe second period before Killenaule goalie Matthew O'Donnell pulled off a remarkable point blank save from Stephen Quirke to deny  Rovers  an equaliser.

There was still time left and while  MoyleRovers picked off two more points,two moreBoland frees,  Rovers  ran out of time and Killenaule held on for a famous one point victory.

It was hard to see such an outcome midway through the first half.  Killenaule found themselves six points adrift after an early blitz from Rovers which saw  Diarmuid Foley  provide a sublime finish  for a goal after receiving the perfect pass from Ross Mulcahy and Rovers added four points without  reply from Killenaule  to putRovers six up after just fourteen minutes.

Killenaule however responded in typical fashion showing great resilience and strength of character  to  turn a six point deficit into a five point advantage before the break.

Two goals from JohnO'Dwyer, one a penalty and the other a beautifully crafted goal after he somehow cleverly made himself favourite to collect a long DeclanFanning delivery  before finishing to the net, brought  Killenaule back into the game.

It was that tenacious attitude that  also stood to  Killenaule  in extra  time as they dug deep to get over the line on a memorable day for the club.

See full report in next weeks Nationalist.