Lawlor and Gleeson inspire Nire
Waterford SFC final: The Nire 1-17 Ballinacourty 0-8
Liam Lawlor and Conor Gleeson formed a deadly attacking combination to blast The Nire to their eighth senior football championship at Fraher Field yesterday.
The pair kicked five points each as the Ballymacarbry side bolted clear of Ballinacourty to collect their second title in three years.
Lawlor shaded the verdict for man of the match and manager Benji Whelan praised the composure of his charges. "When it comes to this situation in the championship, where you need the proven men to stand up and do the job, they did it today. What was good was the controlled and measured way that they did it in the second half," he said.
'Courty played 40 minutes with 14 men following Richie Foley's dismissal on two yellows. Against a stiff breeze, Lawlor (0-3) and Gleeson (0-2) fired the 2014 winners a point up at the break. A high challenge on Gleeson earned Foley his second booking after 20 minutes.
The leaders extended their advantage to four on the resumption. Patrick Hurney responded but three unanswered points from Seamus Lawlor, Liam Lawlor and Conor Gleeson put the outcome beyond doubt, while Darren Guiry shook the roof of the net for a goal in injury time. The Nire travel to Clonakilty for a Munster semi-final against Carbery Rangers next Sunday. They finished runners-up to Austin Stacks two years ago and Whelan is hoping for success in this latest provincial adventure.
Scorers - The Nire: C Gleeson, L Lawlor 0-5 each, D Guiry 1-1, B Wall 0-4 (4fs), S Lawlor, K Brazil 0-1 each. Ballinacourty: P Hurney 0-7 (3fs), M Ferncombe 0-1.
The Nire - T Wall; J Walsh, T O'Gorman, M O'Gorman; J McGrath, M Walsh, J Barron; S Walsh, Dylan Guiry; S Lawlor, Darren Guiry, S Ryan; C Gleeson, B Wall, L Lawlor. Subs: J Mulcahy for M Walsh (11), D Ryan for M O'Gorman (28), C Guiry for J Walsh (56), K Guiry for L Lawlor (58), K Brazil for B Wall (60), C Mulcahy for S Lawlor (62).
Ballinacourty - S Enright; C McCarthy, D Collins, B Looby; S O'Hare, S Briggs, R Foley; C Prunty, J Hurney; E Collins, P Hurney, M O'Halloran; S O'Donovan, G Hurney, M Ferncombe. Subs: N Montgomery for O'Donovan (36), M Fives for E Collins (38), J Elstead for Looby (39), M Maher for Ferncombe (52).
Ref - A Kissane