Keanes SuperValu Killorglin –Minor Football League Division 3B Final
Murphy injury mars deserved Beaufort win
Beaufort 1-11 Rathmore 2-6
By Murt Murphy
From a club point of view, delight for Beaufort as they battled back in the second half to beat Rathmore in this entertaining Keanes SuperValu Killorglin -Minor Football League Division 3B Final, played at Farranfore on Saturday evening. However from a county perspective, worrying times as Kerry's outstanding minor centre back, had to retire with a nasty looking elbow injury after fifteen minutes and faces a race against time to be fit for the Munster Final rematch with Tipperary on July 8th.
This was a classic game of two halves with Rathmore having the better of matters in the opening half but Beaufort hit back in the second to get on level terms but dominating late on and emerging deserved winners on the day.
Beaufort was quickly into their stride and Padraig Doona converted a free straight from the throw in, but Rathmore responded with a fine point from midfielder Cathal Murphy, from a Shane Ryan assist.
Lively full forward Cormac O'Connor gave Beaufort a 4th minute lead but after three wides, the Mid Kerry's sides challenge faded and they failed to score for the next twenty minutes.
Shane Ryan levelled with a 7th minute beauty, and with the Beaufort defence conceding soft frees, Conor Buckley added two more Rathmore points from placed balls so that by the end of the opening quarter, they led 0-4 to 0-2 and Beaufort were struggling in most sectors.
Things got worse in the 15th minute when powerful Kerry minor Ronan Murphy soared into the sky to grab the ball but he landed awkwardly and did not rise for three or four minutes. He had to retire with a serious looking elbow injury and if that was not bad enough, Tom Kelleher raced through the centre of the Beaufort defence in the 19th minute before parting to Shane Ryan, who billowed the Beaufort net.
Rathmore now led 1-4 to 0-2 and with Ronan Murphy on his way to KGH; Tim Coffey must have felt like Captain Edward John Smyth as the Titanic approached that iceberg.
However Rathmore for some reason lost their intensity and failed to score for the rest of the half as Fergal Hallissey began to dominate midfield for Beaufort and two lively and mobile wing forwards Liam Carey and Danny Healy started to find openings in the Rathmore defence.
Beaufort were wasteful but gave an indication of what might come in the second half as they managed just two points during ten minutes of total dominance, a beauty from Liam Carey and another from excellent Padraig Doona.
Still Rathmore looked to have more to give as they led 1-4 to 0-4 at the interval and despite an early Doona free, it was the East Kerry side that made the better start to the second half, with two fine points from Shane Ryan and Patrick O'Callaghan.
That O'Callaghan point in the 39th minute, which gave Rathmore a 1-6 to 0-5 lead, unbelievably was to be Rathmore's final score until a consolation goal from Brian Moynihan, three minutes into stoppage time!
Rathmore simply lost their way completely as Fergal Hallissey and David Murphy farmed possession around the middle where Beaufort also won almost every breaking ball.
Carey and Healy began to torment the Rathmore rearguard while Doona and Cormac O'Connor did the rest. Points followed from O'Connor and another Doona free while in the 45th minute Doona saw his goal bound effort being taken off the line by a Rathmore defender but it was all one way traffic.
Hallissey was fouled in the 49th minute and Doona closed the gap to just a single point, but Beaufort were making heavy weather of turning possession into points on the board.
Finally in the 56th minute, Cormac O'Connor levelled and the floodgates opened as Rathmore's tenacious defence finally caved in and points followed from Doona and Danny Healy, to give Beaufort a two point advantage.
Then in injury time, David Murphy was hauled down going through and Padraig Doona put the keeper the wrong way from the penalty spot.
This afforded Beaufort a five point cushion and there was no way they were going to leave the title slip though in the final minute of injury time, Shane Ryan crashed the ball off the post and Brian Moynihan rattled the Beaufort net, but it was too little to late.
Mr Peter Keane presented the Man of the Match trophy to Padraig Doona (Beaufort) as Beaufort celebrated a fine comeback while Rathmore will reflect on how things could have gone so badly wrong, after such a good start.
P Doona 1-6 (1-0 pen, 0-4 free), C O'Connor 0-3, D Healy and L Carey 0-1 each
S Ryan 1-2, B Moynihan 1-0, C Buckley 0-2 frees, C Murphy and P O'Callaghan 0-1 each
Sean Lillis, Darren O'Sullivan, Shane O'Sullivan, Conor Breen, David Coffey, Eoghan O'Neill, Colin Foley, Fergal Hallissey, Ronan Murphy, Liam Carey, David Murphy, Danny Healy, Dara Coffey, Cormac O'Connor, Padraig Doona
Subs: Brendan Cronin for R Murphy (inj 15), Shane O'Sullivan for D Coffey
Donagh McSweeney, Daniel O'Connor, Conor Jenkins, Andrew McCarthy, Cillian O'Connor, Brian Moynihan, T J Friel, Tom Kelleher, Cathal Murphy, Donnacha McCarthy, John O'Keeffe, Conor Buckley, Shane Ryan, Gavin Breen, Patrick O'Callaghan
Subs: Padraig Desmond for Donnacha McCarthy, Cillian Walker Malone for Gavin Breen
Referee: Charlie Farrelly (Cordal)