Clonakilty ladies footballers made home advantage count in Munster quarter-final

Clonakilty ladies footballers made home advantage count in Munster quarter-final

Clonakilty's Clare O'Leary in action against Glanmire's Kayla O'Connor in the Intermediate Ladies Football Championship final. Picture: Gavin Browne

Clonakilty 3-6 Finuge/St Senan's 1-7

CLONAKILTY outlasted Finuge/St Senan’s following a bruising clash in Ahamilla to reach the Munster ladies football intermediate semi-final.

The Cork county champions were pushed to the limit by their Kerry equivalents before setting up a provincial last-four clash with St Aibes from Limerick, though that's now on hold with current restrictions. 

Clonakilty made hard work of their win by kicking 15 wides. Yet, their opponents ill-discipline coupled with a failure to punish the hosts wastefulness in front of goal titled the result in the West Cork club’s favour.

Four yellow cards (three for Finuge/St Senan’s, one for Clonakilty) and a late Patrice Diggins (Finuge/St Senan’s) red card highlighted the physical nature of a game in which neither team took a backward step.

Numerous over-zealous tackles failed to detract from a cracking encounter in which the outcome remained in the balance heading into the closing stages.

A poor first half was followed by an incident-packed second period. Clonakilty led 1-4 to 0-4 at the conclusion of the opening half following Áine O’Leary’s goal. Then, Martina O’Brien made an important couple of saves prior to Jackie Horgan netting from a rebound after 35 minutes.

Clonakllty responded in style as Louise Galvin was yellow carded for pulling down Ellie Condon and Orlaith Deasy dispatched the resulting penalty. Clonakilty led 2-4 to 1-5 prior to both sides having a player sin-binned but Horgan and Patrice Diggins' points drew Finuge/St Senan’s level with 4 minutes remaining.

A frenzied finale began with Orlaith Deasy converting a free to edge the home side back in front. The introduction of substitutes Ciara Deasy and Kiya O’Mahony proved pivotal as the former rattled the back of the net prior to the latter floating over a point to confirm Clonakilty’s win.

There was still time for Diggins to receive a red card but it mattered little as Clonakilty had already done enough to reach the Munster intermediate championship semi-finals.

Scorers for Clonakilty: O Deasy 1-2 (1-0 pen, 0-1 f), C Ryan 0-3 f, Á O’Leary, C Deasy 1-0 each, K O’Mahony 0-1.

Finuge/St Senan’s: J Horgan 1-2, N Carmody 0-3 f, M O’Keefe, P Diggins (0-1 each.

Clonakilty: M O’Brien; S Callanan, M O’Donovan, K O’Driscoll; J Quinn, S O’Neill, M Deasy; C O’Leary (c), Á O’Leary; O Lowney, M Barrett, O Fahy; M Condon, C Ryan, O Deasy.

Subs: C Deasy for O Lowney (45), K O’Mahony for O Fahy (45).

Finuge/St Senan’s: K Quilter; S Stack, S Murphy, L Houlihan; A Behan, N Leen, J O’Sullivan; C Dillon (c), L Galvin; N Carmody, A M Leen, K Stack; A Cronin, J Horgan, M O’Keefe.

Subs: P Diggins for S Stack (16), K A Dowling for J O’Sullivan (30), C Cullen for A Cronin (60).

Referee: Patrick Smith (Waterford).

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