Inniscarra hurlers emerge as leading contenders in the PIHC

With Cork vice-captain Sean O'Donoghue in attack, Scarra are the form team in the Premier Intermediate tier
Inniscarra hurlers emerge as leading contenders in the PIHC

Ciaran McCarthy, Bandon, battling Owen McCarthy, Inniscarra, in the sliotar in the PIHC game last week. Picture: Jim Coughlan.

INNISCARRA’S Co-Op SuperStores PIHC victory over Bandon has the Muskerry side in pole position heading towards the knockout stages of this year’s championship.

Inniscarra’s 3-18 to 0-12 win was as comprehensive as the scoreline suggests. There are tougher tests ahead for an Inniscarra team hitting form as the Cork PIHC hots up.

Winning manager Paul McCarthy was pleased with the outcome while admitting there is still room for improvement.

“It was a good win,” the Inniscarra hurling manager admitted.

“There is still lots to improve on and work on after it as well. I was not happy with some areas of our play but, look, you have to be happy with the overall performance.”

Three goals, two from Sean O’Donoghue and another from Colm Casey, proved crucial. Inniscarra pulled away from Bandon in a one-sided second half and look set for a big say in the destination of this year’s championship.

“Absolutely, those goals were crucial,” said Paul McCarthy.

We targeted getting goals, you could see that in our win over Youghal as well. We will try and keep that going the next day. Any day you score 3-18, you’d have to be delighted.

“We are around the guys a lot. I can see they are very tuned in and know what’s ahead of them too. It is a massive (last Group B) game against Valley Rovers now. I’m sure Valleys will turn up looking for the win but we are looking forward to it.”

 Dylan O'Donovan and Nelson McCarthy, Bandon, close in on Sean O'Donoghue, Inniscarra. Picture: Jim Coughlan.
Dylan O'Donovan and Nelson McCarthy, Bandon, close in on Sean O'Donoghue, Inniscarra. Picture: Jim Coughlan.

Inniscarra will finish top the group and qualify for the knockout stages if they avoid defeat to Valleys. Bandon’s situation is equally straightforward. A negative scoring differential means a win over Youghal is imperative in the Lilywhites’ final group match to be in with a chance of progressing.

“I just feel we never got out of the starting blocks,” Bandon manager Pat Barry said shortly after his side’s defeat to Inniscarra.

“You have those days in championships. It is what it is. Coming from the high of beating Valley Rovers to the low of losing here in Cloughduv, it is certainly a disappointing feeling.

“You have to credit Inniscarra because they came out on absolute fire. They tore into it right from the start and deserved their victory.

“There were unforced errors into the build-up to Inniscarra’s goals. They happen to everyone so I wouldn’t be hyper-critical of any of our players. No fella goes out to lose a game. We will move on from it.

“One positive from being a dual club in this new championship format - don’t get me wrong it is very tough to run two teams – is that the lads take their minds off hurling and will have time to reset before we play Youghal.”

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