Monday 11 December 2017

King rules the roost for Rathdowney

Rathdowney-Errill produced a stunning comeback to claim their fourth county title in seven years.

Trailing by seven points at half-time, they outscored 2011 champions Clough-Ballacolla by 0-11 to 0-1 in the second half.

Clough-Ballacolla had dominated the first half, using the strong breeze well as they raced into a 0-5 to 0-0 lead after just six minutes, and it was 0-13 to 0-6 at the break.

But it was all Rathdowney-Errill in the second half. They hit four points in a row before Clough-Ballacolla were reduced to 14 men when Tom Delaney was given a straight red for a high challenge on Jason Phelan.

They drew level in 51st minute thanks to Shane Dollard, and they pushed on from there. Clough-Ballacolla briefly drew level with a free from Stephen Maher, but Rathdowney-Errill hit three frees in the last five minutes, from Brian Campion and Ross King (two).

Canice Coonan had a late goal chance to snatch a draw, but Noel Brennan swatted the shot away.

SCORERS -- Rathdowney-Errill: R King 0-9 (7f), J Purcell 0-3, S Dollard, D King 0-2, B Campion 0-1f; Clough-Ballacolla: S Maher 0-5f, M McEvoy 0-3, S Hanlon, W Hyland 0-2 each, C Coonan, W Dunphy 0-1 each.

RATHDOWNEY-ERRILL -- N Brennan; B Campion, L Mahon, A Delaney; J Fitzpatrick, P Mahon, J Corrigan; S Dollard, P Purcell; E Meagher, D King, J Purcell; J Phelan, R King, L Tynan. Sub: O Houlihan for D King (36).

CLOUGH-BALLACOLLA -- D Hanlon; JA Delaney, D Maher, R Broderick; D Bergin, B Duggan, B McEvoy; S Hanlon, M McEvoy; C Coonan, T Delaney, S Maher; W Hyland, M Dunphy, W Dunphy. Sub: A Doyle for M Dunphy (50).

Ref -- B O'Reilly (Portlaoise)

Irish Independent

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