Saturday 20 January 2018

Bonnar works his Fitzgibbon magic again

Waterford IT 1-20 Cork IT 0-19

Martin O'Neill, WIT, in action against John Cronin, CIT
Martin O'Neill, WIT, in action against John Cronin, CIT
Harry Kehoe, WIT, in action against Tomas Lawrence, CIT
Austin Gleeson, WIT, celebrates after scoring his side's first goal alongside CIT's Alan Dennehy and goalkeeper Gary Minihane

WATERFORD IT and the Fitzgibbon Cup appear to be a match made in heaven.

Questions were asked again yesterday and, predictably, the champions had the answers. Semi-final opponents Cork IT fancied their chances but just like in last year's final, WIT put them to the sword.

In the process, Colm Bonnar and WIT moved to within touching distance of another landmark success.

Bonnar was captain of the Waterford RTC side in 1995 that broke the mould and he's masterminded WIT's last five successes as coach.

The Tipperary man hailed the impact of Austin Gleeson on yesterday's game and the Mount Sion star was certainly in the mood. Gleeson scored 1-6 but fellow Waterford stars Pauric Mahony and Gavin O'Brien contributed handsomely too, adding 0-12 between them.

Mahony and Gleeson scored four of WIT's five points in the second period of extra-time to seal a tie that was level 11 times.

Bonnar said: "Austin is in his first year playing Fitzgibbon and sometimes it takes a second year (student) time to get into the intensity of it. Sometimes he looks so skilful and you picture him in the summer time but he's able to work hard too. He pulled off some tremendous catches under pressure and put over points under pressure."

Some WIT players will play their fourth game in seven days today, between college and county.

Scorers - WIT: A Gleeson 1-6 (0-1 sl), P Mahony 0-8 (5f, 1 65), G O'Brien 0-4, J Dillon & J Hayes 0-1 each. CIT: J O'Dwyer 0-5 (3f, 1 65), C Buckley 0-3, N McNamara, J Cronin, A Walsh, B Cooper & D Lordan (1f) 0-2 each, K Kavanagh 0-1.

WIT - D Stapleton; T Fox, G Teehan, J Maher; T Hamill, M O'Neill, O McGrath; J Langton, S Roche; H Kehoe, P Mahony, A Gleeson; G O'Brien, L McGrath, J Dillon. Subs: J Hayes for L McGrath (57), S O'Neill for O McGrath (60+1), G Malone for O'Brien (77), E Ryan for Kehoe (79), P Campion for Dillon (80+1).

CIT - G Minihane; S Murphy, A Dennehy, T Lawrence; J Herlihy, M Ellis, C Buckley; A Walsh, W Murphy; N McNamara, J Cronin, B Cooper; J O'Dwyer, C Hammersley, K Kavanagh. Subs: M Russell for W Murphy (39), P White for McNamara (48), J Coughlan for Kavanagh (55), D Lordan for Hammersley (70).

Ref - F Horgan (Tipperary)

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