Delight for Dungourney: We loved being underdogs all season

East Cork side reversed their group-stages loss to Cloughduv to seal promotion to the PIHC
Delight for Dungourney: We loved being underdogs all season

Dungourney manager Martin Denny and his son Ryan celebrate. Picture; Eddie O'Hare

DUNGOURNEY manager Martin Denny bounced out of the dressing room after his charges had won the Cork IAHC final.

All year, nobody had given his side much of a chance, but all year they had confounded such notions.

“I felt as soon as we got out of the group, it opens up. Quarter-final, local derby (against Midleton), we got lucky. We didn’t get lucky last year or the previous year.

“I’m not a Paddy Power man but what were they? 1/3? Sars were the same, odds-on favourites.

“The lads today were magnificent. 

The forwards will get the praise but the backs today were tremendous. I don’t smoke that often but I might have a cigar tonight with the lads.”

At different stages, Dungourney played their best players inside in their full-forward line, and it was a tactic that Denny was happy with, especially with Shane Hegarty ending up as Man of the Match.

“They probably expected my son, Ryan, to be in there. They probably expected Jack Leahy to go in there. Maybe they didn’t expect the other fella to go in there and he was great when he went in there. We left him in longer.

“What we try and do is keep teams thinking. You can’t leave quality players in there for too long unless they’re getting damage. We left Shane in longer than we thought because he was doing damage.”


While the present for Dungourney is as good as it has been for 100 years, the future looks bright too according to Denny.

“We’ve got four or five other lads coming next year who’ll be good for us. This year we got three but John Ahern and Jack Leahy would’ve played Harty last year, Jack will be playing Harty again on Wednesday, and Paul probably hasn’t had a look in, but he’s a good goalkeeper. If you get three good fellas coming in every year for a small club like us, it’s gold dust, absolute gold dust.

“To me, as a blow-in, although my dad, my mum, my sister, my goddaughter, my nephew all flew over from England. My goddaughter laughs with me because when she hears me talk now, she says I have an Irish twang.

“But then you hear me on the radio and you say, ‘Oh, he’s definitely English!’”

That he may be, but he’s also part of the fabric of Dungourney.

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