Erin's Own continue to defy the odds: These fellas dedicate their lives to hurling

Experienced manager Martin Bowen paid tribute to the veterans and rookies driving the East Cork club on again
Erin's Own continue to defy the odds: These fellas dedicate their lives to hurling

Erin's Own's Robbie O'Flynn and Bishopstown's Paul Honohan trying to win the ball in the Co-op Superstores Cork PSHC at Rathcormac. Picture: Denis Minihane.

MARTIN Bowen was a very happy Erin’s Own manager after they secured the one PSHC semi-final spot on offer on Sunday.

A draw with Bishopstown was enough to grab the number one seed after the group stages for the Caherlag outfit.

“I don’t think anybody, including ourselves, would have expected us to be the team to go through to the semi-final.

“We always find it difficult to beat Bishopstown. They always give us a fantastic match. You have to respect every opposition. They put their hearts and souls into it. They made it very competitive.

“We knew we were on the fringes of qualification but we knew also Bishopstown had a possibility of qualifying so we knew it would be a battle. A dry, hard pitch, it was very tough and we are glad to get a draw out of it.

“We have a fantastic group of players and when the pressure was really on us today, the man that stood out was the Hero [Kieran Murphy] at 38 or 39 years of age. He won three or four vital balls.

“That is what these fellas are about. They dedicate their life playing hurling and to the club. Representing the parish, they have great pride in it.”

PROSPECT

Oran O’Regan, not long out of minor, is a great prospect for the club.

“Oran is a fantastic young talent. He got a nasty injury about 10 days ago in training and we were worried about his knee. We are trying to mind him and bring him through gradually. The impact was unbelievable, he got three points.

“To be fair to Conor Lenihan, the fella he replaced, he had been sick all week."

In spite of not qualifying Bishopstown player/selector Ian Jones was able to reflect on a positive season.

“We knew coming in we’d have to win by seven or eight points. We focused on getting a good performance. It has been a positive year overall. We were in relegation in 2020. Only drew one game and lost two in 2021. We have some good U20s coming through.

Not enough can be said about Patrick Cronin, dragging the club along for 20 years. Hopefully we can get a bit of help for him. We have a few good minors coming up as well.

“The club is doing well. We had a few underage victories. Great work is being done by the likes of Brian Cuthbert, Pat Cuthbert, Dave Scally, Alan O’Sullivan, John Crowley, Jim Ryng, Mick O’Loughlin and Frankie Keating.

“Erin’s Own will have a big say in the championship. We’ve had good battles with them over the years. We played them in our first senior game in 2007 - it was my first game.

“They still have a lot of the same players, the likes of the Murphys and Shay Bowen. They are a traditional hurling club. Always great to play them.”

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