Na Piarsaigh 0-15
Patrickswell are the 2019 Limerick Senior Hurling champions following a five-point win over last year’s victors Na Piarsaigh in LIT Gaelic Grounds this afternoon.
It was far from a memorable final with the winners recording 16 wides while they went 15 minutes without a score in the second half. However, a goal from Jason Considine in the first half, together with Aaron Gillane’s free-taking ability, ensured they did enough to survive.
Na Piarsaigh, who were overly reliant on Peter Casey, managed to level the game in the final quarter but a masterclass from Cian Lynch in midfield dragged Ciaran Carey’s side over the line.
Glorious skill and link-up played combined for the game’s opening score as exceptional stick work from Cian Lynch saw him collect a ball from Aaron Gillane and the Patrickswell captain dispatched it over the bar. The game proved to be a shootout in the opening quarter and it was an entertaining spectacle to watch with in-form Peter Casey sending over outrageous efforts from his corner-forward position to keep Na Piarsaigh in touch.
The reigning champions, however, failed to capitalise on their ball-winning capabilities and sent four balls wide in the opening 15 minutes. Meanwhile, Patrickswell were heavily reliant on Gillane’s free and together with midfielder Josh Considine, they pushed their side two points ahead.
It was clear that the Na Piarsaigh defence were struggling with the penetrating runs of the ‘Well forwards and when Considine was brought down while breaking through, the referee played advantage. Considine jumped back to his feet and buried the ball past the keeper to gift his side a five-point lead.
Back of the net!!
— Spórt TG4 (@SportTG4) October 6, 2019
The goal sparked Na Piarsaigh into life and they pointed two frees in a row, courtesy of Will Henn in the absence of Shane Dowling. Patrickswell suffered a lull period as they tried to force points from distance, leading to wides from Gillane and Diarmuid Byrnes. With the game ticking towards the half-time whistle, the intensity faded with the free count, and wide count, of both sides, rising. The 2016 champions finished the half strongly with another placed ball from Gillane while Kelleher added his second to leave a six-point gap at the break.
The lacklustre nature of the game continued at the beginning of the second period as the ‘Well hit three wides in a row while their fourth shot fell into the hands of Kennedy. Casey continued to impress for the Caherdavin side and he pointed twice to leave just the goal between the sides. Patrickswell’s woes continued as they stretched their wide count to 13 while Na Piarsaigh showed their champions mettle to reduce the gap to just one point with scores from Adrian Breen and Dempsey.
Midway through the second half, Casey deservedly levelled the game with Na Piarsaigh’s seventh point without reply. Eventually, Byrnes got Patrickswell off the mark with a long-range effort to retake the lead and Gillane doubled that minutes later with a free. As the game ticked into the final 10 minutes, it was Na Piarsaigh’s turn to show the nerves. Though Casey knocked over his sixth, the impressive Considine, together with Lynch and Gillane, handed Carey’s side control of the game once more.
As space began to open up in midfield, Lynch took a stranglehold of the game and added another terrific score. Frustrated, ill-discipline crept back into Na Piarsaigh’s play and Gillane duly responded, though Byrnes sent two more efforts wide of the target. Just seconds later, Byrnes showed great composure to close out the game with a free to secure the five-point win.
Na Piarsaigh: Podge Kennedy; Niall Buckley, Mike Casey, Kieran Kennedy; Mike Foley, Ronan Lynch (0-1), Tommie Grimes; Conor Houlihan, William O’Donoghue; Conor Boylan, Kevin Downes, David Dempsey (0-2); Adrian Breen (0-2), Will Henn (0-3, 3f), Peter Casey (0-7, 1f).
Replacements: Alan Dempsey for Houlihan (30) Kevin Ryan for Henn (54)
Patrickswell: Brian Murray; Seanie O’Brien, Nigel Foley, Tom Nolan; Mark Carmody, Diarmuid Byrnes (0-1), Paudie Maher; Josh Considine (1-2), Cian Lynch (0-3); Jack Kelleher (0-2), Kevin O’Brien (0-1), Andrew Carroll (0-1); Aaron Gillane (0-6, 6f), Jason Gillane, Tom O’Brien.
Replacements: Paul O’Brien for Carroll (HT) Calvin Carroll for J Gillane (56)