CLYDA ROVERS dug deep to come out of Group C in Ballyclough on Sunday afternoon, booking their place in the knockout stages of this season’s SAFC.
Heading into the game with fellow Avondhu side, Fermoy, needed to win which led to a brilliant championship contest.
It was clear from the first ball that there was plenty on the line here as both Fermoy and Clyda attacked with purpose and defended in packs.
Clyda’s full-forward – the towering Daniel O’Callaghan was causing all kinds of problems for Fermoy’s rear-guard, bagging the first score of the game while getting fouled on 12 minutes for a penalty – converted with style by Colin Walsh.
For Fermoy, Ben Twomey was on form at corner forward slotting over three frees in the opening half as well as setting up Pádraig de Róiste for his side's first goal on 26 minutes.
A quickly taken sideline from Twomey set de Róiste on his way and after shimmying past two players the number nine finished in style past John O’Sullivan in the Clyda goal.
That goal came four minutes after Clyda’s second major – a long range effort from Clyda’s main scoring threat Eoin Walsh deceived Fermoy keeper Liam Coleman – a goal from nothing that helped Clyda to a 2-4 to 1-4 lead at the break.
Fermoy were on level terms inside 15 seconds of the restart after a brilliant run from former Cork star Tomás Clancy set up Alan O’Connor – game on in Ballyclough.
Despite the setback, Clyda hit back with four points on the bounce but again Fermoy wouldn’t concede and points from Ruairi O’Hagan and Clancy had this one down to the minimum with time running out.
Try as they may, Fermoy couldn’t get the gap below one and while O’Hagan had a chance late on to steal the draw, the fair result here was a Clyda win.
E Walsh 1-2 (0-1 f); C Kelly 1-1 (1-0 pen); D O’Callaghan 0-3; P Cronin, C O’Sullivan 0-2 each; C Flanagan (f), N Hanley 0-1 each.
P de Róiste 1-2; B Twomey 0-4 (0-3 f); A O’Connor 1-0; R O’Hagan 0-2f; B O’Sullivan, T Clancy, K Morrison 0-1 each.
J O’Sullivan; A Walsh, B O’Connor, D Buckley; M Forde, P Kissane, C O’Sullivan; C Flanagan, D Walsh; C Kelly, P Cronin, N Hanley; E Walsh, D O’Callaghan, S Ronayne.
F O’Shea for P Kissane (bs 30, reversed 37), C Buckley for C Kelly (52).
L Coleman; A Baragry, A Creed, E Clancy; B O’Sullivan, G Lardner, P Murphy; T Clancy, P de Róiste; D Dawson, A O’Connor, D O’Flynn; B Twomey, R O’Hagan, K Morrison.
M Brennan for K Morrisson (39), M McGirr for A O’Connor (40), S McCarthy for D Dawson (53), J Scannell for E Clancy (59), A Aherne for D O’Flynn (60).
Referee: M Maher (St Finbarr’s).
Elsewhere, they were mixed results for city clubs, St Michael’s and Bishopstown, as the group stage of the Bon Secours county senior A football championship wrapped up on Sunday.
St Michael’s showed true battling qualities to win the battle of the two unbeaten sides in Group B, defeating Knocknagree by 0-10 to 0-8.
But, Bishopstown are involved in another relegation play-off for the second successive season after losing to Kiskeam by 0-15 to 1-8.
Mallow joined the Mahon club in the last four following their third consecutive victory, pipping Bantry Blues by a point, 3-16 to 1-11, condemning the west Cork club to the relegation game.
Dohenys will be Knocknagree’s opponents in the quarter-finals after their 0-14 to 0-6 win over Bandon while Ballingeary pipped O’Donovan Rossa 1-11 to 0-13 to meet Clyda Rovers in the quarter-finals.
Adam Hennessy (4), Liam Grainger and Eoghan Buckley with 0-2 apiece along with the Hegartys, Keith and Eric, supplied St Michael’s scores.
Bishopstown opened with a goal but struggled to contain Dave Scannell, Gene Casey and Sean O’Sullivan up front for Kiskeam. Mallow’s goals came from a Ryan Harkin penalty, Eoin Barry and Sean McDonnell.
Keith White was the star for Dohenys with Fionn Herlihy and Mark Buckley also contributing.
Ballingeary v Clyda Rovers; Knocknagree v Dohenys.
St Michael’s and Mallow.
O’Donovan Rossa 0-13 Ballingeary 1-11; Bandon 0-8 Dohenys 0-14.
Bandon 1-10 Ballingeary 1-9; O’Donovan Rossa 0-11 Dohenys 0-17.
O’Donovan Rossa 1-13 Bandon 2-10; Ballingeary 2-14 Dohenys 1-8.
1. Ballingeary 4pts (+8), 2. Dohenys 4pts (+5), 3. Bandon 3 pts. 4. O'Donovan Rossa 1 pt.
St Michael’s 0-10 Knocknagree 0-8; Bishopstown 1-8 Kiskeam 0-15.
St Michael’s 0-13 Kiskeam 1-8; Bishopstown 0-10 Knocknagree 1-14.
St Michael’s 2-10 Bishopstown 0-5; Knocknagree 1-13 Kiskeam 1-5.
1. St Michael’s 6pts, 2. Knocknagree 4pts; 3. Kiskeam 2pts, 4. Bishopstown 0.
Mallow 3-6 Bantry Blues 1-11; Fermoy 2-11 Clyda Rovers 2-12.
Fermoy 0-11 Bantry Blues 0-7; Mallow 1-10 Clyda Rovers 0-4.
Mallow 0-14 Fermoy 1-9; Clyda Rovers 0-15 Bantry Blues 1-7;
1. Mallow 6pts, 2. Clyda Rovers 4pts, 3. Fermoy 2pts, 4. Bantry Blues 0.