WHILE Erin’s Own eradicated what had been a 10-point lead at one stage to earn a draw against St Finbarr’s at Páirc Uí Chaoimh on Saturday night, manager Martin Bowen felt that they might have taken even more from the Co-op SuperStores Premier SHC Group C encounter.
Trailing by 1-10 to 0-3 as half-time approached, the Glounthaune side clawed their way back into contention with two Robbie O’Flynn goals before sub Colm O’Callaghan touched an O’Flynn free to the net.
It was O’Flynn who landed the injury-time equaliser after Ben Cunningham looked to have given the Barrs victory, but there were even late chances for Erin’s Own to take the two points.
As it was, the avoidance of defeat means that they will qualify for the knockout stages with a win over Charleville while the Barrs face Blackrock in a winner-take-all tie. Even so, Bowen wasn’t completely pleased with the draw.
“I thought we should have won the match,” he said.
“We never played in the first half, we were concerned we were a bit flat coming into the match, and at one stage we were 1-10 to 0-3 down.
“That’s our history in a sense, we keep coming back, and while we were very concerned, we felt we could come back, and we did.”
Coming off a great win over champions Blackrock in their opener, Erin’s Own couldn’t bring that momentum with them.
“I thought the Barrs outplayed us very much in the first half,” said Bowen. “I thought they were too clever for us.
“We had some cross words at half-time but they responded, and they were fantastic, in fairness.”
In the Barrs camp, manager Ronan Curran knew that some poor shooting, especially in the second half, was costly.
“Disappointed,” was his assessment.
“If you create 17 chances in a half you should win any match, especially with a nine- or 10-point lead. The goals were silly, we’ll have to look at them again, but they looked very stoppable.
There were some positives to take, but Curran knows that the marksmanship needs to be better in the final game.
“We played some good hurling,” he said.
“The night mightn’t have suited our style of hurling but the first half showed we were well able, fierce energetic all over the field and probably should have gotten another few goals in both halves.
“If you keep missing those, you’re going to get caught.”