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Cooraclare in Semi-Final

posted 16 Sep 2010, 12:29 by Unknown user   [ updated 23 Sep 2010, 08:33 by Denis Tuohy Agricultural Consultant ]

Cooraclare 1-3 Éire Óg 0-5

You could have left this game, driven to Ennis, cycled the return journey and missed nothing by the time you hit rain soaked, wind-battered Lissycasey again. Or if you did miss something, it wouldn’t take all day to elicit what it was, such was the paucity of scoring or major incident.

The first eight minutes cleared up any hope that this game would feature many scores as the teams kicked six wides between them in that spell.

Constant rain and a strong breeze, blowing towards the scoreboard end contributed hugely to the absence of much memorable football.

Stephen Hickey pointed the opening score nine minutes into the first half after Eoin Glynn had been fouled. Five minutes later Ger Tubridy, who came back from Australia late last week, scored a bizarre yet defining goal. Éire Óg goalkeeper Shane O’Connell kicked a free straight to Tubridy, who lined out at full-forward. Tubridy didn’t exactly burst the net immediately.

Instead he directed a high ball towards the Ennis team’s goalmouth. The shot dropped short but a mix up between Shane O’Connell and corner-back Saran Butler ended with the ball in the back of their own net. Both went for the same ball and neither won it.

Cooraclare didn’t score again for 14 minutes and when they did the crowd gasped at the identity of the Cooraclare scorer. First off David Marrinan dummied two Éire Óg players, made space and drove a huge ball towards Fanny O’Dea’s. It bounced about six yards from the Éire Óg goal, nobody attacked it and it went over the crossbar. There isn’t much more to say. Cooraclare led 1-1 to 0-2 at half time.

The rain really pelted down at that point, while the westerly wind strengthened.

An awful lot didn’t happen after half time either, although points from a Stephen Hickey ’45 and from substitute Brian Fitzpatrick left the sides level, 1-1 to 0-4 12 minutes after the restart.

Playing into a fairly strong wind, Cooraclare deployed Hugh Donnelly as an extra defender and brought Ger Tubridy to the half-forward line.

Now beginning to exert control at midfield and playing a very effective possession game, Seán Maguire put Cooraclare a point up 13 minutes from full-time.

At this stage Thomas Donnellan and Mark Tubridy were excelling for the winners in the half back line, while goalkeeper Andrew O’Neill dealt very capably with a couple of dropping balls.

Brian Fitzpatrick, Michael O’Regan and Stephen Hickey spurned decent chances for Éire Óg, who fell further behind when Michael McMahon pointed a free eight minutes from time. Joe Considine had delivered an astute ball to John Looney, who caught it and was fouled.

Two points ahead, 1-3 to 0-4, Looney and McMahon kicked wides as did Brian Frawley, very poorly, at the far end.

A minute from time Nicky Hogan fisted Éire Óg’s final point but they couldn’t get an equaliser. Brian Fitzpatrick kicked wide again, two minutes into injury time, while Fergal Lillis dispossessed Eoin Glynn, when he looked as if he might wangle a badly needed point.

Cooraclare’s ability to play the short game, against the wind in the second half, contributed hugely to their victory.

It should also be noted that Tom Stackpoole refereed sensibly in what were very difficult conditions, although the excellent surface in Lissycasey held up impressively.  

That’s really about it. Most who attended will have forgotten this game already. Well maybe not in Cooraclare because the win has secured them a place in next Sunday’s county semi-final.

Cooraclare: Andrew O’Neill; Gearóid Meade, Conor Marrinan, Fergal Lillis; David Marrinan, Mark Tubridy, Thomas Donnellan; Joe Considine, Michael Kelly; Seán Maguire, Colin Kelly, John Looney; Hughie Donnelly, Ger Tubridy, Michael McMahon.

Scorers: Ger Tubridy (1-0), David Marrinan, Seán Maguire, Michael McMahon (f), 0-1 each.

Wides: 11; frees: 19

Éire Óg: Shane O’Connell; Michael O’Regan, Donie Lyne, Saran Butler; Dean Ryan, Conor Healy, Nicky Hogan; David Russell, Darren O’Meara; Shane Daniels, Brendan Manning, Brian Frawley; Eoin Glynn, Stephen Hickey, David Monaghan.

Subs: Brian Fitzpatrick for Brendan Manning (half-time).  

Scorers: Stephen Hickey (0-3, 0-2f, 1 45), Brian Fitzpatrick (0-1), Nicky Hogan (0-1).

Wides: 14; frees: 17

Referee: Tom Stackpoole (Ennistymon)