Russell Rovers Report

24 August, 2009

Russell Rovers GAA

www.russellroversgaa.com

Russell Rovers 2-11 Youghal 2-7


History was made at the well-prepared Aghavine venue last Thursday night when we annexed our first ever East Cork Minor A hurling title with a highly-entertaining and exciting win over championship favourites Youghal. This was a victory born of courage, grit and determination and will go a long way towards compensating for our recent disappointing results at junior level. In hindsight our replay against Cloyne proved beneficial as our lads have learned how to deal with the pressure of being able to finish out a tight game when they are ahead on the scoreboard.

As early as the 2ndminute Daniel Moynihan served notice that as captain he was going to lead by example when he sliced over a great sideline ball for our opening score, followed by a pointed free by Brian Hartnett. Youghal then struck a purple patch in which they chalked up 1-2 but Rovers responded with points from Hartnett and a Sean Maher goal to put us back in front. Hartnett’s impeccable shooting of seven first half points and another from Eoin McGrath consolidated our interval lead of 1-9 to 1-3. Just before the break Sean Maher set up Aaron Beausang for what looked like a certain goal but he was unlucky to see his shot rebound off the underside of the crossbar and cleared to safety.

The six points cushion did not seem to be enough as we faced into the teeth of a strong wind in the second half but stout defending by our backs limited Youghal to just two points in the third quarter. We had very limited scoring chances ourselves in this period until Moynihan expertly cut another sideline ball towards the Youghal goal which found Sean Maher who first-timed it to the net. Brian Hartnett pointed another free soon after but Youghal weren’t ready to roll over just yet. Back they came with a goal and two points to leave just 3 points separating the sides with 5 minutes of normal time remaining. In the 30thminute Hartnett eased Rovers nerves when he fired over an insurance point off his hurley, his 9thpoint in all, and we knew then we were home and hosed. There were periods in that second half when we had our backs to the wall but Dan Moynihan was a colossus, along with Brian Hartnett, Kevin Tattan, Shane Fleming, Paul Lane, Kevin O’Brien and two-goal hero Sean Maher. In fact, everyone from goalkeeper Andrew Hartnett to corner forward Ciaran Mullins were heroes on the night. Well done also to the team management of Seamus Kennefick, Noel Murray and Dick Fitzgerald. The Michael Canavan Cup, sponsored by the East Cork Journal, was presented by the Chairman of the East Cork Board, Michael O’Brien to captain Daniel Moynihan whose acceptance speech matched his performance on the field. Referee Michael Mulry of Aghada handled the game well.

Team:Andrew Hartnett; Kevin Ivers, Aidan Beausang, Shane Fleming; Paul Lane, Kevin Tattan, David Whelehan; Daniel Moynihan, Kevin O’Brien; Eoin McGrath, James Ahern, Brian Hartnett; Ciaran Mullins, Sean Maher, Aaron Beausang.

Subs: James Walsh, Daniel O’Brien, Chris O’Brien, Philip O’Neill, David Casey, Kieran O’Brien, James Moynihan.

Fixtures:

U-21BHC: Russell Rovers v. Bride Rovers in Caherlag on Thurs, 27thAug at 6.30 pm

Congratulations:

Congratulations to our U-12 hurlers on winning the Willie Ryan Tournament for the first time ever when they defeated Aghada by 0-9 to 0-6. They followed this up with a great win over Erins Own in the East Cork championship (2-8 to 2-2) and now go on to meet the winners of Aghada and Sarsfields 2 in the semi-final.

Congratulations also to Castlemartyr on reaching their first East Cork Junior A hurling final since 1975. I’m sure many people will agree that their appearance in a final has been long overdue.