2020 - Cork Senior Hurling Champ -

Imokilly (1 - 20) VS U C C (1 - 23)
Date Sunday 23 August 2020
Time 19.00
Venue Páirc Uí Rinn
Competition Cork Senior Hurling Champ Hurling Championship
Round 18

MONDAY, AUGUST 24, 2020 - 06:02 AM irish examiner MICHAEL MOYNIHAN, PAIRC UI RINNMatch Report

MONDAY, AUGUST 24, 2020 - 06:02 AM  irish examiner


Cork Premier SHC

Imokilly 1-20 UCC 1-23 

UCC threw the Cork senior hurling championship wide open with this dramatic win over champions Imokilly in Páirc Uí Rinn.

A driving finish to a terrific game saw the students home — when Will Leahy got Imokilly’s only goal with injury-time looming the east Cork men led for the first time and looked likely winners, but UCC hit the last four points in a row for a gutsy, deserved victory.

“They’re not county champions the last few years for no reason,” said UCC manager Tom Kenny of Imokilly.

“Dessie (Dylan Desmond, keeper) made a great save and they got the rebound — I thought it was gone.

“The boys did well though, they clocked up a few scores. That’s all them on the pitch — we can tell them what to do, you know when you're playing on the pitch you've got to play it as you see it.

“They gave a great response to that goal and in fairness, we probably went 10 or 15 minutes without a score. Things were going against us, but Shane Barrett and Paudie Power came in made a big difference.

“That’s the nature of competition for us — we don't know who we’ll have the next day, when it will be, things that that.

“People mightn’t be happy to see us in the county championship but we don't make the rules, we just abide by them.” 

UCC started well, with four snappy points in a row, Shane Conway to the fore. Imokilly — who had Seamus Harnedy ruled out before throw-in with a hamstring injury — settled, with Will Leahy helping cut the deficit to one, but then UCC took over.

Neil Montgomery hit two points before Owen McCarthy slalomed through for a goal. UCC hit 1-5 without reply in total before Leahy responded for the divisional side.

Leahy hit three in a row and defender Niall O’Leary chipped in — 1-9 to 0-7 at the water break.

UCC stretched their lead, outscoring the east Cork men four points to two as half-time approached. Imokilly hit some poor wides before the break, when it was 1-13 to 0-10 in favour of UCC.

The sides resumed swapping points again, UCC maintaining their advantage — 1-17 to 0-13 on 40 minutes.

As the half wore on, Imokilly subs John Looney and Josh Beausang came to the fore, cutting the students’ lead to three points. Another Leahy free made it six in a row, 1-17 to 0-18 at the water break.

Barry Lawton made it a one point game with seven minutes left, with UCC beginning to flag.

The students rallied: Mark Coleman pointed a sideline and Daire O’Leary responded for Imokilly, sub Shane Barrett pointed for the College - and then Leahy crashed home that goal for Imokilly.

However, UCC hit the last four points for a dramatic victory, with sub Daire Heffernan, Brian Kelleher, Montgomery and Power the scorers.

“I suppose the game last Tuesday night probably stood to us in terms of getting a good start,” said Kenny.

“Having a six-point lead at half time is something we’d have taken happily.

“The key for us was not to give away a goal, and when it came it was very late — but those last four points were a superb response.

“We knew we were in a good place to give Imokilly a game, and it’s probably the best time of year to catch them — as the year goes on they’d build up a head of steam, and they were probably unlucky how the championship was regraded in Cork, to lose so many players.

“For us, a couple of years ago we beat Sars and didn't do anything after that, the same when we beat Midleton a few years before that.

“This is a great bunch of lads and I’d love to see them push on and do well for themselves in the county championship.” 

 Last night’s result will have a lot of managers thinking the same about their own teams.

Scorers for UCC: S. Conway (0-6, 4 frees); N. Montgomery (0-5); O. McCarthy (1-1); S. Barrett (0-3); B. Verling, B. Kelleher (0-2 each); K. Walsh, M. Coleman (sl), D. Heffernan, P. Power (0-1 each) 

Scorers for IMOKILLY: W. Leahy (1-8, 7 frees); B. Lawton (0-3), B. Cooper, L. O’Shea, J. Looney, (0-2 each); D. O’Leary, N. O’Leary, J. Beausang (0-1 each).

IMOKILLY: J. Barry (Castlelyons), D. O’Brien (St Ita’s), Colm Barry (Castlelyons), M. Russell (Aghada), C. O’Brien (St Ita’s), N. O’Learyr (Castlelyons), J. Cronin (Lisgoold), S. Hegarty (Dungourney), B. Cooper (Youghal), Brian Lawton (Castlemartyr), Barry Lawton (Castlemartyr), L. O’Shea (Lisgoold), B. Mulcahy (St Catherine’s), S. O’Regan Og (Watergrasshill), W. Leahy (Aghada) Subs: J. Looney (Aghada) for Mulcahy (HT); D. O’Leary for O’Brien (40); J. Beausang for O’Shea (43).