Russell Rovers GAA Club

25 April, 2017

Russell Rovers 5-10 Glanmire 1-8

Last Saturday evening in the excellently prepared venue of Rostellan our footballers had a well-merited victory over Glanmire in the 1st Round of the Junior B football championship played in front of a very disappointing attendance.

The win was not as emphatic as the final result suggests with Glanmire outscoring us by 1-6 to 1-5 in the second half, despite being reduced to 14 men mid-way in the first period. With not a puff of wind around the grounds, conditions were ideal for a good game of football which provided great passages of play and some outstanding scores.

Glanmire began the better side and had two points on the board before Kieran Walsh opened our account with a well-taken point in the 10th minute. Four minutes later Chris Ruddy goaled with a low drive into the far corner and followed up with a brace of points from placed balls. In the 20th minute James Kennefick, who had an outstanding game at wing back playing a Captain’s role, thundered forward to fire over a great point from distance. This was followed by a goal-fest over the next 7 minutes. First, Brian Hartnett who was tormenting the Glanmire defence with his wizardry and pace, soloed through for a superb goal. Then, Chris Ruddy rattled the back stanchion when Brian Whelehan’s shot for a point landed on top of the right-hand post and somehow came back into play. Three minutes later Hartnett split the Glanmire defence once again and with the goal at his mercy he unselfishly opted to lay off the ball to Ruddy who calmly palmed it into the net for his third goal. The same player completed our first half scoring with a point on the stroke of half-time to put Rovers into an unassailable lead of 4-5 to 0-2 (though the referee’s notebook made it 4-4 for us).

During that opening half our defence settled down well to shut out any threat posed by the opposition, particularly Pa Crowley and also Luke O’Riordan whose tenacious and timely tackling caught the eye. And were it not for a superb save by goalkeeper Dan Ruddy early in the game when Glanmire were enjoying a period of dominance, the half-time score might have had a different complexion about it.

As expected, Glanmire upped the gears on the resumption of play and registered four points within ten minutes with Brian Whelehan replying for Rovers. Any threat of a Glanmire come-back was put to bed in the 12th minute when midfielder Paul Lane made a raid into Glanmire territory and billowed the roof of the net from close range. Bud Hartnett added a couple of well-taken points while Eoin McGrath raised another white flag from what seemed an outrageous angle out on the right wing. In the 55th minute Glanmire eventually managed to breach our defence with a good fisted goal, albeit at a time when Pa Crowley was no longer on the pitch, having been black-carded earlier. Paul Lane had the final say with a point in stoppage time to cap a fine all-round team performance. Well done to the management team of Mike Mannion, Tommy Whelehan and Seamus Kearney.

Team: Dan Ruddy; Aidan Beausang, Pa Crowley, Luke O’Riordan; Daniel O’Brien, Jack McGrath, James Kennefick (Capt) (0-1); David Whelehan, Paul Lane (1-1); Eoin McGrath (0-1), Kieran Walsh (0-1), Kevin Ivers; Brian Hartnett (1-2), Chris Ruddy (3-3), Brian Whelehan (0-1).

Subs: Alan Linehan, Eoghan Cronin, Cormac Ahern and Chris Scanlon (all used).

With only seven teams in the Junior B championship, this win puts us into the semi-final which is expected to be played on the week-end of 6th May. The draw for the semi-final pairings is expected to take place at the Board meeting on 26th April.

Fixtures:

JHL Div 3 v Fr. O’Neills on Saturday, 29th April at 5 pm in Shanagarry.

JHL Div 1 v St Catherines on May Bank Holiday Monday at 3.30pm in Shanagarry.

Please check locally for any changes to above fixtures.