Saturday 22 July 2017

MEELIN: John Joe Brosnan Memorial Cup returns to his native Meelin

GAA: After an absence of 13 years, Meelin Junior Hurlers were gloriously crowned Duhallow Junior A Champions in Fr. Kelleher Park Kilbrin last Sunday.

After a titanic closing 10 minutes where Meelin, who led by seven points midway through the second half, left Banteer in for two quick strike goals and three points to fall one point behind, saw corner forward DJ O'Sullivan pounce on a loose ball in the square and billow the Banteer net in injury time.

Meelin were slow to settle against a slight wind, on a heavy pitch, with the opening score going to Banteer. From here Meelin went three points to one ahead, a lead they only surrendered in the last minutes. We turned in at the break four points ahead, 0-9 to 0-5.

Upon the resumption, Banteer clocked up the first point, but our lads stepped up a gear and went seven points ahead with some great play from Jerry Forrest, Jeremy Curtin, Liam Collins and William Buckley.

At this stage, we were looking confident until Banteer scored 2-3 to go 0-1 point ahead. The never say die attitude shown in the two semi final games by this young Meelin side clicked into gear again with Brendan O'Sullivan clocking up a sublime point.

With the game tied entering injury time and we facing our second draw in this year's championship, the razor-sharp Liam Murphy placed a quickly-taken free in young Eamonn Brosnan's hand, who crossed from the left corner. The ball was spilled by the Banteer backline only for our DJ O' Sullivan to rattle the Banteer net.

As the clock ticked down to the second minute of injury time, Banteer launched one last raid and were awarded a free about 30 metres out. As we neared the end of our fingernails, the shot was superbly blocked by William Murphy. As he cleared the ball into the cloudy skies, referee Eoin Walsh blew the longest whistle for the final time.

Wild scenes of jubilation followed as what could only be described as a "famine" in hurling terms for Meelin, after 13 barren years, were erased.

The John Joe Brosnan Memorial Cup, which was first presented by the Meelin Club to the Duhallow Board in 2004 in memory of one of Meelin's most famous sons, was eventually presented to the rock solid full-back and captain, Denis O'Riordan.

On arrival back to the bonfires in Meelin Village on Sunday night, our warriors were paraded to the stage and introduced to a tumultuous and deserved welcome from the huge gathering.

Chairman of the club Willie O'Sullivan congratulated all those involved in the win including the trainer Donal Roche, the selectors Ben O'Sullivan, Liam Sheahan and Willie Fitzgerald, club officials and sponsors Con Curtin – Plumbing Contractor.

He also thanked the local shops and pubs for their contributions to the preparations of this team for the final along with members of the Juvenile Club for their help in the sale of flags and headbands and the members of Newmarket Pipe Band who took part in the parade.

Meelin will now represent Duhallow in the Junior A Hurling Quarter Final, scheduled for September 27 against the winners of the Muskerry Division.

TEAM: Stephen M. O'Sullivan, Mike Forrest, Denis O'Riordan (C), Shane O'Riordan, Joseph O'Doherty, Kevin Collins, Jerry Forrest, Liam Collins, William Murphy, Brendan O'Sullivan, John Forrest, William Buckley, Eamonn Brosnan, Jeremy Curtin, DJ O' Sullivan.

WIN & SPIN: Results Friday, August 28 Hannah Mary O'Connor, Tullylease €30; Darby Sheahan, Newmarket €30; Connie Curtin Meelin €30; Deirdre Curtin, Meelin €30; Helena Linehan, Meelin €45.

Weekly Lotto Winner: No 44 Jimmy Duggan, Meelin €100.

ST. PETERS U12 FOOTBALL: After a convincing win last week over Kanturk in the Championship, we take on Millstreet next Wednesday at 7pm.

ST. MARKS U12 HURLING: Next Sunday evening we play Dromtariffe in the Championship final at 6pm in Newmarket. This follows our defeat of Croke Rovers last week in the semifinal. All support and encouragement will be greatly appreciated for our future stars.


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