Premier SHC: Erin's Own come good to 'get monkey off backs'

Fightback earned them a first championship victory over Glen Rovers since 1998
Premier SHC: Erin's Own come good to 'get monkey off backs'

Robert Downey, Glen Rovers, challenges Sam Guilfoyle, Erin's Own at Páirc Uí Rinn on Saturday. Picture: Jim Coughlan.

A millstone was removed for Erin’s Own at Páirc Uí Rinn on Saturday night as they got the better of Glen Rovers in the opening round of the Co-op SuperStores Cork Premier SHC.

Leading by four points at one stage in the first half, they fell four behind early in the second period as the Glen reeled off six in a row but the Glounthaune side then conjured nine on the trot and ran out winners by 1-16 to 0-15. Naturally, manager Martin Bowen was delighted to start with a win and

“To us, the Glen are a famous club with a fantastic tradition and I don’t think that we had beaten the Glen in the championship since 1998,” he said.

“It was a long time and they had an Indian sign over us, they beat us in a county final, semi-final and in earlier rounds. In that respect, we’re glad to get that monkey off our backs.

“It was difficult for players because the ground was so hard and then the rain came and it was slippery.

“It’s only two points, but it’s a big two points for us. It was critical to win a match. We start out from a low base every year because of the make-up of our team and we just try to keep it going because we’ve young fellas coming through.

“We’ve had a few lean years at juvenile level but the older lads are incredible guys.”

It was an outcome that seemed unlikely when the Glen moved into a 0-14 to 1-7 lead after trailing by two at half-time, but the experience of the Erin’s Own team was shown as they refused to panic.

“In actual fact, we spoke about that at half-time,” Bowen said.

“We were saying that they were going to have a period where they dominated – and they dominated well – but I thought that we came back fantastically. We took over the match completely in the last quarter and got some great scores.

“The subs made a huge difference as well.”

Allied to that was the effect that Oran O’Regan had when he came into the Erin’s Own attack.

“He had a huge impact,” he said, “he’s a fine hurler.

“He’s young and he was very close to starting but we felt that he’d be better coming on.”

It means that another win, either this weekend against Na Piarsaigh or in their final match against Bishopstown, will give Erin’s Own a three-from-three strike-rate in terms of qualifying from their group under the new championship system.

Bowen feels that the league – in which a place in the revamped 2023 Division 1 was secured – stood to the Glounthaune side.

“We used a lot of players in the league,” he said, “we were missing a number of players through injuries and things like that.

“We played Carrigtwohill in one match and I think that we were short 24 players the same day. It served its purpose well in terms of giving players game-time.

“I’m a big fan of the format. A lot of people aren’t but, the way I look at it, all of the league matches are competitive and they’re well-structured, there’s a reason for playing.

“If it was the old championship format, you’re playing league matches at the end of the year that are of no value.”

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