Kilmurry Ibrickane 0-11 Drom Broadford 0-5
PERHAPS this was Kilmurry Ibrickane’s plan all year. Ease through the Clare championship without over-taxing themselves and up the ante once the Munster club campaign starts.
For much of the first half, Kilmurry displayed a hunger and quality not evident during their defence of the county championship.
Peter O’Dwyer set the tone right from the throw-in when he barrelled past the Drom-Broadford midfielders before placing Stephen Moloney, who kicked an excellent point after just 15 seconds.
A minute after Seánie Buckley kicked a wide, Micheál Reidy scored the Limerick champions’ first score from play after Ray Lynch and Johnny Shanahan had held off Darren Hickey and Enda Coughlan to set him up. Such was Kilmurry’s subsequent dominance that Drom-Broadford didn’t score again until three minutes into the second half.
Playing with the strong wind, which blew towards the scoreboard end in Quilty, Stephen Moloney added two excellent points from play, the second of which was the last kick of the first half, to help the Clare champions establish a 0-7 to 0-1 half time lead.
With Michael Hogan displaying endless reserves of energy at wing-forward, Johnny Daly pointed a brace of frees, while Ian McInerney and Peter O’Dwyer landed the winners’ remaining first half points.
Kilmurry also kicked seven wides in the opening period with Daly, Odran O’Dwyer, Ian McInerney, Martin McMahon, Peter O’Dwyer and Shane Hickey all off target.
Their policy of directing long ball into Odran O’Dwyer didn’t work seamlessly either as it didn’t result in sufficient scores, given how dominant Kilmurry were, especially in their half-back line and midfield areas.
Although against the wind in the first half Drom-Broadford didn’t look as focused as they did last year. When under pressure they turned over possession repeatedly and their short game helped Kilmurry to bottle them up.
First-half injuries to Seánie Buckley and midfielder Jason Stokes didn’t help either and in fact, Drom-Broadford resumed with corner-back Dee O’Leary and substitute Michael O’Sullivan in midfield.
Perhaps the two-in-a-row Limerick county champions would have made more of a game of it if Johnny Shanahan’s first-time pull had finished inside, rather than narrowly outside, Dermot O’Brien’s far post. A minute into the second half O’Brien had punched Ray Lynch’s long ball in but the break fell to Shanahan, who didn’t capitalise.
Garret Noonan made it 0-7 to 0-2 two minutes later but this score was followed by 11 scoreless minutes. In that period, McInerney and Stephen Moloney kicked a wide apiece before Noonan and Pat Donnelly reduced the deficit to three points, 0-7 to 0-4.
Kilmurry brought Noel Downes on at this stage and they kicked four points inside the last 10 minutes.
Moloney, Michael Hogan and an Odran O’Dwyer double completed the winners tally. Micheál Reidy landed Drom-Broadford’s last score from a free.
Kilmurry’s first half display, which received a standing ovation from the crowd packed into the Quilty stand, helped Micheál McDermott’s team to establish almost total control.
Stephen Moloney, who kicked four points from play, from just five shots, was one of the standout performers for Kilmurry, while the work rate, aggression and tempo of Michael Hogan’s display was admirable. Peter O’Dwyer and Paul O’Connor held sway at midfield, while Martin McMahon and Enda Coughlan were the best of Kilmurry’s defensive unit, where the full-back line as a unit will have to take the odd gamble and play in front of their men, rather than defending when the inside forwards win possession.
Kilmurry travel to Waterford on Sunday week, November 22, where they will play Stradbally in the Munster club semi-final.
Kilmurry Ibrickane: Dermot O’Brien, Darren Hickey, Mark Killeen, Martin McMahon; Shane Hickey, Enda Coughlan (captain), Declan Callinan; Peter O’Dwyer and Paul O’Connor; Michael Hogan, Ian McInerney, Stephen Moloney; Johnny Daly, Odran O’Dwyer, Michael O’Dwyer.
Subs: Noel Downes for Johnny Daly, Evan Talty for Michael O’Dwyer, Paul O’Dwyer for Stephen Moloney and Vinny Talty for Peter O’Dwyer (injured).
Scorers: Stephen Moloney 0-4, Odran O’Dwyer 0-2, Johnny Daly 0-2f, Peter O’Dwyer, Ian McInerney and Michael Hogan 0-1 each.
Wides: 15 Frees won: 27 45’s: 0
Yellow cards: Martin McMahon
Drom-Broadford: Keith Noonan, Mikey Clancy, Dee O’Leary, Tommy Stack; Gary Egan, Tom McLoughlin (captain), Eoin Barry; Jason Stokes and Pat Donnelly; Seánie Buckley, Johnny Shanahan, Garrett Noonan, Ray Lynch, Micheál Reidy, Derry McCarthy.
Subs: Neil Conway for Seánie Buckley (injured), Michael O’Sullivan for Jason Stokes (injured), Jason Ryan for Johnny Shanahan and Michael Boyce for Gary Egan.
Scorers: Garrett Noonan 0-2, Micheál Reidy 0-2, (0-1f) and Pat Donnelly 0-1f.
Wides: 4 Frees won: 16 45’s: 1
Yellow cards: Tom McLoughlin and Michael O’Sullivan. Red card: Michael O’Sullivan.
Referee: Patrick O’Sullivan (Kerry).