SICKENING violence erupted at the Laois senior hurling final replay at O'Moore Park in Portlaoise yesterday. A 15-year-old Camross player was knocked unconscious and had to be rushed to hospital after a blow to the head by a member of the opposing team.
SICKENING violence erupted at the Laois senior hurling final replay at O'Moore Park in Portlaoise yesterday.
A 15-year-old Camross player was knocked unconscious and had to be rushed to hospital after a blow to the head by a member of the opposing team.
With just over two minutes left in the match, which Castletown won by 1-8 to 0-10, two mentors started to wield hurleys at each other outside the end line while the play was at the other end.
And when substitute Dean Delaney arrived at the scene, he was struck with a full blow of a hurley to the head and collapsed to the ground unconscious.
The youngster's mother was in the crowd and watched the incident in horror.
The game was held up for 15 minutes as he was taken by ambulance to Portlaoise hospital where he regained consciousness last night.
Before play resumed, Castletown 'keeper Ger Cuddy was sent off, and two mentors - Castletown's Ben Cuddy and Tommy Delaney of Camross - were also shown red cards.
When the game did restart, Camross scored a point to cut the deficit to a single point, but with only three minutes and 20 seconds of additional time played referee Pat Moran called a halt to proceedings.
Camross were incensed that no injury time had been played and confronted the referee who had to be escorted off the field by uniformed Gardai.
It was Castletown's eighth title in 11 years, but the unsavoury incident certainly took the gloss off their victory and captain Robbie Delaney had his acceptance speech drowned out by the boos of unhappy Camross supporters.
SCORERS - Castletown: D Cuddy 0-6, J Hooban 1-0, P Cuddy, P Mullaney 0-1. Camross: Z Keenan 0-6, K Cuddy, F Hogan, D Keenan, T Burke 0-1.
CASTLETOWN - G Cuddy; M Phelan, B Ferns, T Phelan; D Keenan, P Cuddy, D Brophy; D Cuddy, R Delaney; JR Kingston, J O'Sullivan, C Cuddy; J Hooban, F O'Sullivan, J Palmer. Subs: J Delaney for J O'Sullivan, P Mullaney for J Delaney, E Dooley for Palmer.
CAMROSS - T Doran; L Cuddy, P Cuddy, M Maloney; S Gilmore, F Hogan, D Keenan; C Delaney, Greg Cuddy; J Palmer, D Culleton, D Dooley; Gary Cuddy, K Cuddy, Z Keenan. Subs: B O'Sullivan for Greg Cuddy, T Burke for Gary Cuddy, D Delaney for Palmer
REF - P Moran (Graiguecullen)