Newmarket 2-7 Cill na Martra 0-7
NEWMARKET remain hot on the trail of silverware following a decisive victory over Cill Na Martra in a fiery Bon Secours Premier IFC semi-final at Glantane.
Far from a classic encounter rather than a tough battle fought tooth and nail with Newmarket prepared to deliver the intensity that ultimately secured a ticket to an all-Duhallow decider against Kanturk. Two first-half goals in quick succession from Ryan O’Keeffe and Barry O’Connor sent Newmarket on their way to a deserved victory.
Nobody could question Cill na Martra’s honesty and commitment yet a combination of wasted possession and resolute defending from Newmarket decided the outcome. A sporting contest for the best part of the hour surfaced only for frustration to set in on the Gaeltacht side during the latter stages to finish with 11 players on the field.
A lively start saw Cill Na Martra wing back Séan Ó Foirreídh punch a lead point before nervous play followed with missed chances at either end from play and frees. Though Newmarket opened their account from a Ryan O’Keeffe white flag, Cill na Martra shaded territory with county player Dan Ó Duinnín regaining the lead.
However, the alarm bells rang for Cill na Martra with the concession of two rapid-fire goals. Initially, Kevin O’Sullivan placed O’Keeffe to show a clinical touch to blast home.
And Newmarket were handed a further massive boost, O’Sullivan, again the instigator to set up Barry O’Connor with the easiest of tasks for the Duhallow men lead 2-1 to 0-3 at the initial water break.
Those scores underlined the essential difference between the sides, Newmarket’s patience and composure becoming clearly evident. And while their front men deserved credit for their scores, Newmarket’s defensive resilience surfaced, particularly, the outstanding Paudie Allen, Mikey Browne and TJ Brosnan with Mike Cottrell and playmaker O’Sullivan offering key assistance.
Cill na Martra landed much-needed points from Ó Foirréidh and Mike Ó Deasúna yet the initiative remained with Newmarket, Cottrell and Conor O’Keeffe on target for a 2-6 to 0-5 advantage at the interval.
The tempo dropped on the resumption with just three scores recorded, Brosnan landing Newmarket’s solitary effort. For their part, Cill na Martra never put enough pressure on the deficit, their hopes ended by the dismissal of Máirtín Ó Conchúir (black card), Tadhg Ó Corcora, Noel O'Leary and Danny Ó Conaill in an untidy finish.