because Ballyduff needed all the Boyles and all the other players to step up to the mark against a determined Lixnaw side. Liam was a collossus at the back. Mikey roared into the game in the second half, as did Aidan when he dropped somewhat deeper and young Padraig showed flashes of his usual brilliance.
"It was very very tough," Aidan admitted.
"We found it very hard actually to put them away. Lixnaw are always dogged and tough and they always battle on until the very end. They remind us of ourselves actually. We said it ourselves actually that they're very similar to us. They just keep going and going. Even at the very end there they stuck a goal again, Mike Conway. I thought our backs did excellently today. I know they're saying we gave away a lot of frees, but really they never threatened for a goal other than the very last ball there. I thought the backs were excellent today.
"It was a good old battle with the boys. Even Trevor [McKenna] and myself, Pat [Corridan], whoever I went on, Maurice [Corridan] it was pure good old school hurling. There was no badness, just rooting and tearing and killing each other and get up then and smile and walk away again then."
Still Ballyduff found some cracks in the Lixnaw defence early doors. They had two goal chances that had they found their target would probably have made for an easier afternoon for the green and white faithful up in the stand.
"We'd some guilt edged chances there in the first half for goal and had we got them it might have been a different game. I think Bobby [O'Sullivan] had the miss of the century there from four yards, but I told him to leave it go it was going in, but what can you do?," Boyle laughed.
And what about the goal? Did he get a touch on it?
"Oh yeah. Just the bare touch, but I'll claim it. Of course, why not? Bobby scored enough anyway from play."
The fact it was so close for so long had to have been a concern for Ballyduff considering their overall superiority. The reason they were able to pull away in the second half was clear according to Boyle. They had a seriously talented bench and were able to refresh the team midw a y through the second half.
"It's a credit when you're able to bring o n three o r four fellas that THEY'VE finally done it.
This generation of Boyles has matched the achievements of the one which went before. Three brothers had captained Ballyduff before 2012. None of them tasted championship success as captain. Aidan Boyle put an end to that unfortunate sequence on Sunday afternoon in Stack Park and in so doing became, along with his father Liam Snr, a member of an illustrious (not to mention exclusive) club of fathers and sons, who have captained teams to championship glory.
That achievement, coupled with the fact that he had three brothers on the pitch (with another on the bench), meant that Sunday afternoon was a very special afternoon indeed for Aidan.
"It really does [mean a lot]," the Ballyduff captain said after the match.
"I tried not to talk about it, because it's a team game obviously, but it is a pleasure to play with the boys. Colm was even togged out there today, he'd a bad aul injury this year in his knees. It's a pleasure, Kenneth was there before us and there's five of us still on the panel so it's a pleasure to play with the boys. It's very emotional actually and, of course, I have to mention our dad because he's the one who drives us all on."
It's just as well he d id are as good as the three or four lads who are playing. Thomas [O'Rourke] there now he was very unlucky not to start. Pat Joe [Connolly] the same and several other lads – John Paul Leahy, those boys, who played through the year, Eddie Joy, Martin O'Connor. Martin hurt his shoulder in the first game and today was his first full game back. That was his debut actually the first game where he broke his shoulder so it was nice to see him back there today as well."
There was a feeling in Stack Park before, during and after the game that, perhaps, Ballyduff haven't played as well as they can so far this year. Boyle doesn't disagree.
"No disrespect to Lixnaw but we only played up to 70-75% there today," he said.
"But that's what teams are after doing to us over the past two years. They're after learning our strengths and they're stopping us. It's not that we're not able to play as well as we can it's that we're not allowed to play. It's a credit to other teams how they're stopping us, dominating aerial battles and like that today I'd say I caught no ball and that's my game. The boys just did their best and I give that to the other teams for training hard and chasing us down."
Thoughts will now turn to the Munster championship and a November 4 date with either the Cork or the Limerick champions. Having lost out in the Munster final last year there's a definite feeling of unfinished business surrounding this Ballyduff team.
"We just had to pay Lixnaw all the respect that we could there today because we did not want the focus to go – everyone was saying you're straight into the semi-final now of the Munster, but there was no such thing," Boyle said.
"We just wanted to get over today first and we'll celebrate now for a day or two and then concentrate on getting back training on Thursday. We're just one game away from a Munster final now so if we knuckle down, work hard, then hopefully we can go one further this year."