Sunday 22 July 2018

Gorey get off to ideal start

Naomh Eanna 2-17 Kilrush 0-4

Seán Doyle of Naomh Eanna on the ball as Kilrush defender Jim Sharry challenges
Seán Doyle of Naomh Eanna on the ball as Kilrush defender Jim Sharry challenges

Dean Goodison

Naomh Eanna had no problems brushing aside the Kilrush challenge to get their Joyces Expert Intermediate 'A' football championship Group A campaign off to a perfect start in the Ferns Centre of Excellence on Sunday.

The Gorey men put their foot down against the breeze in the first-half and were able to build a 1-7 to nil lead. They probably relaxed a little after the break, making the second-half a mere formality.

There's a reason why Gorey are likely championship favourites at this early stage. It's not just that they can field 15 players with enough quality to beat the other sides at this grade, it's that they continue to add depth.

Lee Kinsella is a bit of a stalwart at this stage and if he's not going to start, he's a serious option to spring from the bench.

However, it was the eye-catching ease with which youngster Seán Delaney came on and picked off points that bodes really well for the team in green and white.

For Kilrush, another difficult season with the big ball looks likely. There will be games that they are in that they can win, but they will need to take those chances if they are to have any hope of making the knockouts.

The game was over after the 1-7 burst in the first 22 minutes. Gorey's dominance was signalled by the fact that corner-back Aodhán Doyle had their first point from play, while fellow defenders Gary Molloy and Jack Cullen joined him on the scoresheet in the second-half.

The goal came from a David O'Brien punched effort from the edge of the square, after Charlie McGuckin's shot dropped short.

Down by 1-9 to 0-2 at the break, things could have got ugly for Kilrush early in the second-half had it not been for a string of superb Darragh Kinsella saves.

However, the Kilrush 'keeper couldn't keep everything out and eventually Lee Kinsella thumped home a screamer to make it 2-12 to 0-2 in the 42nd minute.

Gorey were able to coast to the end but Mike Murphy did stake a claim for a starting spot with a couple of late points for the losers.

Naomh Eanna: Barry Kinsella; Gary Molloy (0-1), Conor McDonald, Aodhán Doyle (0-1); Jack Cullen (0-1), Pádraig Doyle, Eoin Molloy; Brendan Travers, John O'Brien; Jack Cushe (0-1), Peter Travers (capt.), Charlie McGuckin; William Cullen (0-3 frees), David O'Brien (1-6, 0-3 frees), Seán Doyle. Subs. - Lee Kinsella (1-1) for Cushe (31), Seán Delaney (0-3) for B. Travers, inj. (36).

Kilrush: Darragh Kinsella; Jim Sharry, Frank Lancaster, Tom Byrne; Peter O'Neill, James Lancaster (capt.), John Kavanagh; Colm Buttle, Seán Bookey; Seán Kirwan, Conor Levingstone, James Byrne (0-1); Ted Kinsella, Billy Nolan (0-1), Podge Byrne. Subs. - Mike Murphy (0-2) for Levingstone (30), Gavin Sunderland for Nolan (31), Brian Hayden for P. Byrne (37), Nolan for Kirwan, inj. (45), Byrne for Hayden (56).

Referee: Ian Plunkett (Marshalstown-Castledockrell).

Gorey Guardian