Boyle strikes twice late on to catch out Renard
County JFC Final: Ballyduff 2-9 Renard 0-12
The closest of the three finals at the weekend in terms of the scoreline and, while the other two victors on Sunday might have been fancied to win, there was not necessarily the same degree of confidence about Ballyduff getting the job done against a predominantly young and fast running Renard side.
Indeed, for all that tactics and systems have taken over the modern game, two old fashioned 'route one' balls into the full-forward line had the desired effect in Pádraig Boyle netting the two goals that ultimately decided the game.
Renard did a lot right on Saturday evening in Killorglin. However, what they discovered, like Cromane and Annascaul beforehand, is that if Ballyduff are somewhere in sight of a win they will put everything on the line to try and get a win and that's what they did from a deficit of 0-12 to 0-7 heading into the final 10 minutes of proceedings.
The opening nine minutes were all about Renard though, four straight scores giving them the early advantage as three Dara Fitzgerald points and a Conor O'Leary effort gave them the lead. Killian Young was having a great personal duel with Mikey Boyle, the latter eventually moving on the pitch later in the game to good effect for Ballyduff.
Pádraig Boyle hit a high, hanging effort for the North Kerry side's first score in the 12th minute as despite Renard going in front by 0-7 to 0-2, Pádraig created the only real first-half goal chance from nothing in the 20th minute.
He evaded Cian O'Leary and hit a speculative effort that come off the inside of the post with Pa McGill flat footed in the Renard goalmouth. Fitzgerald scored a sixth point for himself and an eighth for Renard before the break but the extent to which Ballyduff were back in contention was three Mikey Boyle points and a Johnny Regan effort making it 0-8 to 0-6 at the break.
Renard were the quicker out of the blocks again in the second period, Fitzgerald moving up to eight points as a Robert Wharton effort was a good sign of the influence he was having on the game at the time in Renard going ahead by five for the second time after 40 minutes.
Alan Curran was doing some mighty defending as well as it looked like the South Kerry side had found a way to cope with Ballyduff's physicality, heart and desire. Mikey Boyle caught Wharton with a hefty shoulder as the game entered the final quarter though and it was almost a cue for them to up their tempo as a ninth point from Fitzgerald, sixth from a free, in the 49th minute was Renard's final score.
Jack Goulding made it a four-point game, but Aidan Boyle's introduction was the cue for Ballyduff to go the direct route and change the course of proceedings. In the 54th minute came the first goal as Pádraig found himself one-on-one with McGill to leave just a single point between the sides.
Renard lost captain Brian Sugrue to injury as Ballyduff were really exerting themselves in trying to take control of the game. Renard full-forward Kevin Curran went back defending in Sugrue's place with Niall McDaid introduced at the other end.
However, with extra-time increasing as a possibility, another long ball into Aidan led to Pádraig getting a carbon copy of his first chance at goal and in the first minute of additional time, Ballyduff had the led for the first time at 2-8 to 0-12.
Pádraig put up a further point into the third additional minute with Darren O'Connor black carded for a foul on Killian Young with Young irate he wasn't allowed an advantage for Renard to try and make amends at the other end.
Ultimately Ballyduff's 'smash and grab' had been enough to bring a first county football title for the club in 28 years since their 1991 Novice success over Firies also making amends for those in the club who lost out in the 1988 Novice decider to Renard.
Hurling will be the focus now for Ballyduff more immediately whether it is club or county, but they can saviour a football win that was the embodiment of what the club is all about in fighting all the way until the end.
Ballyduff: Michael Hussey; John Hussey, Paul O'Carroll, Darren O'Connor; Padraig Walsh, Anthony O'Carroll, Mike O'Halloran; Eoin Ross, Jack O'Sullivan, Johnny Regan (0-1), Phillip Lucid, Jack Goulding (0-1); Mikey Boyle (0-4, 3f), David Goulding, Padraig Boyle (2-3) Subs: Daniel O'Carroll for Daniel Goulding, Thomas Slattery for Walsh, Aidan Boyle for Lucid, Paud Costello for Ross
Renard: Pa McGill; Alan Curran, Brian Sugrue, Ronan Quinlan; Killian Young, Cian O'Leary, Robert Wharton (0-1); Michael O'Leary, Sean O'Connor; Eoghan McCrohan, Jim Sugrue, Blaine McCarthy; Conor O'Leary (0-1), Kevin Curran (0-1), Dara Fitzgerald (0-9, 6f) Subs: Paudie Casey for McCarthy, Kevin Kelly for Cian O'Leary, Niall McDaid for Sugrue
Referee: Billy O'Shea (Keel)
The 60-second report
Dara Fitzgerald and Alan Curran were really in the running until Ballyduff's 'Late Late Show'. Pádraig Boyle was the single player who Ballyduff could rely on for a score as he was responsible for three-fifths of Ballyduff's scoring, 2-3, as opposed to three-quarters by Fitzgerald, 0-9 (6f), as Boyle was awarded the official honour afterwards.
Brian Sugrue going off was a blow for Renard without doubt but whether he could have single handed stopped Ballyduff getting in for another goal is a matter of debate. Arguably that challenge by Mikey Boyle on Wharton was a symbolic shift in the momentum towards Ballyduff.
An interesting clash of styles last Saturday evening as it was arguably a victory for more 'old school' methods. Whether the win leads to Ballyduff becoming more prominent as a Football team in the county remains to be seen though as they have no Munster Championship to advance to following this win.