Cork Co. Junior Football Championship Final

Knocknagree 2-19
Erins Own 2-10

Knocknagree claimed the Donal O’ Sullivan Cup having defeated a gallant Erins Own side in the final of the Cork Co. Junior ‘A’ Football Championship at Pairc Ui Rinn on Sunday last. Erins Own were under pressure in the opening half with only four scores on the board compared to 1-11 to the opposition but really shook things up in the second half with two goals and were unlucky to see a penalty hit the butt of the upright with five minutes of normal time left.
The Duhallow side opened on a bright note and had three points on the board in as many minutes where Anthony O Connor, captain Mathew Dilworth and Danny Cooper all raising white flags. Shane Murphy kicked a free following a foul on an advancing Mossie Carroll to reduce the lead by one but Knocknagree, who played a very close game with some neat kick passes, advanced their lead again with a brace of points from John Fintan Daly and Dilworth. Murphy again added a second point for Erins Own following good work outfield with Kieran Murphy and Carroll. Erions Own suffered a sucker punch when Knocknagree scored a brilliant goal from Anthony O Connor following a pristine cross-field pass from James Dennehy. What followed this goal was complete dominance by the Duhallow representatives where they kicked six points on the trot to put real daylight between the sides, with a James Taylor and a James Carroll point from a free being the only contribution on the scoreboard for the Caherlag men in an eighteen minute period, resulting in Knocknagree going in at the break, 1-11 to 0-4 ahead.
James Taylor resurrected the Erins Own challenge three minutes into the second half when he kicked a lovely point and followed this up with a surreal goal, when he soloed half the field and took a return pass to billow the Knocknagree net to let seven points between the sides. However Knocknagree were having none of it and returned a total of three points from Daly, Eoghan McSweeney and Anthony O Connor in four minutes to re establish their dominance. O Conor and Dilworth added a point each on the 45th and 46th minutes but two minutes later Erins Own staged a comeback with an opportunistic goal from former Rugby international, Tomas O Leary and a further three points, two from Taylor and a third from Stephen Horgan to make a game of it as we entered the last five minutes of normal time. That penalty miss came at a crucial time for the men from Caherlag as they were pressing and putting Knocknagree on the back foot on several occasions but could just not break them down. A pointed free from Taylor gave Erins Own hope but Knocknagree sensing another resurgence upped the level a notch which returned two lovely points from Dilworth and Copper. Knocknagree put the final nail in Erins Own coffin with a defining goal from John Finatan Daly, when he dribbled the ball into an empty Erins Own net after the advancing Darren O Sullivan got stranded and Daly will never again score such an easy goal. Comac Dooley and Chris White swapped a point each but when referee Colman Dineen blew the final whistle on 66 minutes Knocknagree had claimed their third title, having being successful before in 1984 and 1991.

Scores: Knockagree; A. O Connor 0-7 (0-2f), J F Daly 1-3, M. Dilworth 0-5, J. Dennehy 1-0, D. Cooper 0-2, K. Buckley, C. White 0-1 each.
Erins Own: J. Taylor 1-5 (0-4f), T. O Leary 1-0, E. Murphy 0-2, J. Carroll, S. Horgan 0-1 each.

Knocknagree: P. Doyle, P. O Connor, S. Daly, G. O Connor, M. O Mahony, K. Buckley, D. Moynihan, D. Cooper, P. Collins, J. Dennehy, JF Daly, E. McSweeney, M. Dilworth, A. O Connor, F. O Connor.
Subs; K. Daly for P. O Connor (BC, 48), T. Long for M. O Mahony, T. Cooper for J. Dennehy, C. White for M. Dilworth, J. Carroll for S. Daly, C. O Leary for G. O Connor.

Erins Own: D. O Sullivan, S. Kelly, C. Dooley, C. O Connor, C. O Mahony, J. Sheehan, P. Fitzgerald, K. Murphy, M. O Carroll, M. Collins, S. Murphy, A. Power, E. Murphy, T. O Leary, C. O Callaghan.
Subs; J. Taylor for S. Kelly (inj, 9), J. Carroll for C. O Mahony (26), S. Horgan for J. Carroll (36), A. Bowen for M. Collins (51), R. O Flynn for E. Murphy (55).

Referee Cormac Dineen (Douglas).

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