The Paudie Palmer column: Hats off to West Cork, Erin's Own and Blarney

The Paudie Palmer column: Hats off to West Cork, Erin's Own and Blarney

West Cork celebrate their win at the weekend. Picture: Jim Coughlan.

DID somebody mention at the weekend that the All-Ireland inter-county competitions were going ahead?

Maybe, I am being somewhat facetious, but honestly there is so much going on in the club scene that the inter-county roadshow has difficulty getting a look in.

Take Saturday afternoon last and I am only going to mention what was on the screens.

Firstly, you had the Cork Ladies Senior A football final between the seven-in-a-row-chasing Mourneabbey and West Cork the team that was set up in 2016 to take them down.

Over the ditch, Dr Crokes were meant, according to those of us in the know, to be going through the motions when they faced Mid Kerry to set up a date with their own local divisional side East Kerry.

Then of course, Sarsfields would be involved in a competitive challenge against neighbours Erin's Own who were considered by some to be lucky to receive a quarter-final invitation.

Just imagine, you visited one of those cash enrichment houses otherwise known as turf accountants on Saturday morning and handed in a fiver with a slip containing West Cork, Mid Kerry and Erin's Own.

In all probability, It would be treated as a collectors item. Those of you, who are experts at this method of handing over your hard or softly earned money might revert back to us with the odds on the above-mentioned investment.

In CIT, two early Mourneabbey goals had some of us sipping from the déjà vu coffee mug, it had all the signs of a 4th business end defeat for the western ladies in five years.

To their credit, the sideline brains-trust realised that such benevolent defending wasn’t going to enable them to gain entry to the historical journal and a number were added to the defensive personnel which ensured no further green flags for the North Cork girls.

By the sós mór, West Cork had staged a championship-winning comeback and lead 3-05 to 2-07, with the outstanding Libby Coppinger netting twice and Eimear Kiely getting the third.

Going over the last, the two times All-Ireland champions were still in town but with two minutes remaining in regulation time, the game produced one of the best green flag events that this column has witnessed in quite a while.

A long ball was superbly fielded by full-forward, the aforementioned Libby Coppinger, who on turning spotted Daire Kiely with the throttle fully opened and laid it off and there was no stopping it.

The goal would grace any stage but here, it was the final catalytic moment that lead to West’s awake.

The historians had their entry. Yes, the debate about the geographical size of the region can wait for another day, but on a micro examination the better team won and not only that, they won a classic.

Last week the Kiely twins featured following Valley Rovers victory over Douglas in the Junior A decider. They have to be the first set of twins to collect two county medals in the space of a week. It’s an achievement for their collective memory banks.

Our last historical reference to the ladies football final and how it may lead to a significant achievement.

Fiona Keating from Courcey Rovers lined out at corner forward and 24 hours later, she landed five points for the Courcey Rovers camogie side that defeated Douglas to qualify for their second senior county final in three years.

They have never won it and in this year’s decider, they will play the winners of Saturday’s other semi-final between Inniscarra and St Finbarr’s.

If, and it is a big if, the Ballinadee/Ballinspittle outfit do go and win their first ever senior title, it would mean that their most talented dual player would have achieved a double that would simply have to be a first.

Fodder

Did anyone really think that Erin’s Own would be providing fodder for Glen Rovers in the Cork senior hurling semi-final the weekend after next prior to the facing up to their more stylish neighbours on Saturday evening?

The group stages provided us with the basis for our prediction but God, we were well offside.

Yes, over the past few years when most other cars were parked up on the side of the championship roadway, the Glounthaune one moved along but rarely did we expect it to be first past the tape.

The end of their game against Sars probably encapsulated their season so far. When a match-winning moment presented for the favourites the defending was both manic and effective and then the laurel point from an Eoghan Murphy free.

But they won’t beat the Glen, sure they won’t?

Nearly every week, there is a Lazarus/ Houdini award and on this occasion can we get somebody to go Blarney to present it their premier intermediate hurling team and on the way back call to Ballincollig with the Mass card.

Akin to others, I was following this on twitter but on occasions, you stop following, as the result appears inevitable from a distance out.

Nine down at the break became 10, 10 minutes later and when it went to nine with seven minutes remaining, the next twitter engagement would be to check the full-time score.

All we waited for was the mná mór to step up to the mic.

Declan Hannon scored his second goal which had consolation written all over it. Mark Coleman pointed a few, Patrick Crowley got one, margin down to three.

When Cian Dorgan put Ballincollig four in front and the clock nearly on red, surely that was that. Coleman clipped over another free. They were still in it.

Then the match commentator on Blarney’s live stream had his moment or should I say two.

Firstly, Patrick Crowley let rip from distance, an effort which looked certain to go wide or hit off a player, but the green flagman was waving, the commentators' relations were concerned.

Sides level, the puck-out, it came to Paudie Power and over it went. Every lady in Blarney could now sing.

Approximately 22 hours later, the same Paudie was back in Páirc Uí Rinn and this time with his first puck after 13 seconds and wearing the UCC uniform he directed the sliotar to the Na Piarsaigh net.

Talented scriptwriters would be at their best, to come up with better.

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