AGHINAGH are still basking in the glory of a historic first Mid Cork Junior A Football Championship title success.
Liam Twohig was simply outstanding for Aghinagh in the Ross Oil Mid Cork final encounter against Ballincollig's second team, as he scored a total of 1-11 of their 1-12 tally, an exhibition of clinical and composed score-taking from play and frees.
A huge crowd gathered for the final in Macroom under the lights on a midweek November night. Everyone wanted to be there to witness Aghinagh make history, the club drawing its players from the villages of Ballinagree, Bealnamorrive and Rusheen, along also with parts of Carrigadrohid.
On what was a truly magical night for the club, Aghinagh ended a 73-year wait for their breakthrough Muskerry JAFC.
Speaking to The Echo, Twohig, who was involved in Cork development squads as a teen, reflected on a memorable occasion all those associated with Aghinagh GAA.
“Now that you have a few weeks to reflect on it and look back at what we have achieved, it is definitely a great feeling.
“As an Aghinagh person, to win the Mid Cork anyway is just something that we have always dreamed of.
“That is what you’d always talk about around the parish of Mid Cork. So to finally go away and do it is just great relief in one sense and just great pride, pride in the parish I suppose as well.”
Aghinagh saw off a determined young Ballincollig squad in the final, while their run to the Mid Cork crown saw plenty of thrills along the way.
In the quarter-final, Aghinagh required a penalty shootout to see off the challenge of Kilmurry, before taking down Éire Óg in the semi-final.
“Danny Buckley, our trainer’s motto was every day go out and perform as well as you can."
Focusing on the performances, not the results paid off.
“It was just hard work that it came down to in the end. We worked savagely hard in training throughout the year.
“Some of the training sessions we did were seriously tough. We played with savage intensity and just work ethic. We worked for each other."
Aghinagh is an area with a strong love for all things Gaelic Football. Dual legend Briege Corkery grew up in the parish while Marie Ambrose is another from the area to excel for the Cork ladies footballers.
Now the former De La Salle Macroom student and this current Aghinagh side have written themselves into folklore and well and truly given another reason to put their parish on the map.
On numerous occasions, the scoring talents of Twohig came to the fore throughout the successful championship run.
“It is a great honour to be a part of the first ever team. It was a great feeling for us to actually do it, but it is just as much for everyone else that gone before us and laid the foundations for us to push on.
“Football is the heartbeat of the parish and football kind of means everything to people in Aghinagh.
Unfortunately due to Covid issues, the Muskerry champions Aghinagh were without a number of key players for the county quarter-final meeting with Boherbue.
But when everything was all said and done, Twohig and his Aghinagh teammates will be forever remembered as the group which brought the Muskerry crown back to the parish.
Looking ahead to 2022, Twohig hopes after Aghinagh finally have got a taste to Mid Cork title success, that the club can sample more of it in the years to come.
“Once you get a taste of anything at all you just want to push on. Even this year we were very disappointed we couldn’t go out and represent ourselves properly in the County.
“We were disappointed this year that we couldn’t push on this year and give a good account of ourselves.
“But once you get a taste of success at all, next year we just want to be right back at it again. We don’t think there is any reason why we can’t push on now and try to get back to what we did this year. We want to make it a habit if we can.”