Monday 16 September 2019

Guilfoyle goal helps Banner men plunder the points in late surge

Gaelic Games Round-Up

Clare’s Rory Hayes is tackled by Cork’s Declan Dalton during yesterday’s Munster Hurling League match at Cusack Park. Photo: Sportsfile
Clare’s Rory Hayes is tackled by Cork’s Declan Dalton during yesterday’s Munster Hurling League match at Cusack Park. Photo: Sportsfile

Clare snatched victory from the jaws of defeat in dramatic fashion, taking the lead for the first time in injury time and then going on to beat Cork by two points (1-20 to 0-21) in a Munster Hurling League Round 1 game played at Cusack Park, Ennis yesterday in front of an attendance of 1,987.

Cork had lead from the off, until Ryan Taylor shot Clare in front in the fourth minute of injury time with a well-taken point. A further Diarmuid Ryan score before the whistle ensured a two-point victory. As expected, both sides fielded experimental line-ups, mixing the experienced with youthful hopefuls.

The Rebels had the better of the first half exchanges, leading by 0-13 to 0-7 at the break. Centre-forward Michael O'Halloran was impressive. The Blackrock clubman struck four points from play in the opening 35 minutes. Declan Dalton was also impressive, scoring six from placed balls.

Cork full-forward Jamie Coughlan got scoring proceedings under way with point from play in the third minute. A Dalton free and a Cormack Murphy effort from play opened up a 0-3 to nil lead for the visitors after just eight minutes. Clare eventually got off the mark with a Niall Deasy free a minute later but Cork retained the upper hand throughout the half and at one stage led by six points.

A lively second-half opening by the Banner men yielded four unanswered points inside three minutes, but no matter how they tried they just couldn't find an equaliser, with Cork managing to keep their noses in front with timely scores.

Substitute Colin Guilfoyle scored the hosts' goal with two minutes remaining and then Deasy fired over the elusive equaliser, before Taylor and Ryan combined to snatch a last-gasp victory.

In football, Monaghan's attacking power helped them comfortably see off Antrim by 1-20 to 1-12 in yesterday's opening Dr McKenna Cup tie at Clones. Malachy O'Rourke fielded an experienced squad which found its flow after a sluggish opening 20 minutes to control a contest minimally affected by the experimental rules.

Monaghan led by 0-11 to 0-6 at the interval, and tightened their grip when Micheál Bannigan slipped a pass to James Mealiff for a thunderous finish to the net three minutes after the restart.

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Antrim responded with a Niall Delargy goal, punched home from Matthew Fitzpatrick's cross, but they were unable to curb the energy and movement of Ryan McAnespie and Bannigan, who were at the heart of Monaghan's attacking strategy throughout.

In Mullingar, a fine point deep into added-time from arguably the best player on show, Westmeath's Paddy Fagan, earned his side a deserved draw (0-11 apiece) against Offaly in an entertaining O'Byrne Cup tie played in reasonably pleasant conditions at St Loman's Lakepoint Park.

Louth picked up their first O'Byrne Cup victory with a decisive eight-point win (1-17 to 1-9) over a disappointing Wicklow at Bray. The Louth men were reduced to 14 men after 12 minutes but Wicklow still could not take advantage despite having a bright start with points by Conor McGraynor from a free and Pádraig O'Toole from play in the first two minutes.

Indeed the home side were not to score again for another 15 minutes as Louth took control and when John Clutterbuck fired to the net after eight minutes he set the visitors on the road to a 1-8 to 1-6 lead at the break.

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