University College Cork had a stunning victory on Sunday night at Páirc Uí Rinn in the Cork County Senior Hurling Championship over a Midleton side fancied by many to go on and win the county with the likes of early favourites Douglas and Glen Rovers already knocked out.
When both teams on the night are broken down, it is not too difficult to see why the result went the way it did.
Too often with college and divisional sides in the Cork championship, not enough effort is put in. While it is plain as day for everyone to see that the buckets of talent are at hand to trouble any of the top club teams in the county, their downfall can be put down to lacklustre preparations and an insufficient amount of will to win.
Tonight, however, we were treated to a glimpse of just how aswesome an outfit camps such as UCC, CIT, Imokilly, Avondhu, Duhallow, etc. can be at this grade.
Manager of UCC, Martin ‘Gatchie’ Walsh, along with selectors, Tom Kingston, Peter Coady, and the godfather of GAA in the college, John Grainger, appear to have their ship in order in terms of seeking Cork SHC glory for once this season.
Have one look at their star studded line up from tonight:
With a figure from the cream of the crop of inter-county hurling in every line, who would stand a chance against this outfit?
Every player on the team has senior inter-county experience.
The spine of the team, Colm Spillane, Conor Gleeson, Jamie Barron, Darragh Fitzgibbon, Mikey Breen and Tom Devine would almost win a county championship on their own. Each of those players have already made extremely strong cases for All-Stars this year, besides the latter who opted to travel instead of hurling for the summer. That’s not forgetting to mention the classy Mark Coleman, in line for Young Hurler of The Year for his exploits with Cork this summer and again a standout performer tonight.
In the Midleton ranks were county stars such as Conor Lehane, Luke O’Farrell and Paul Haughney.
— Midleton GAA (@MidletonGaa) September 17, 2017
UCC now progress to the quarter-final stage of the championship and will be feared by all going forward.
In light of tonight’s result, there were Cork folk quick to criticise the legitimacy of allowing a team packed full of so many of the country’s top hurlers, sprinkled from across the finest county teams in Ireland at present to take on a squad of club hurlers from the same parish.
Is it something the Cork County Board must look at? If UCC go on to obliterate the remainder of teams laying between them and the Seán Óg Murphy Cup, one would think so.
Time for reform , allow collages but cork club players only.
— noel walsh (@noelywalsh) September 17, 2017
They're neither a club nor a division. Club championship should be for clubs, full stop. Bad result for Cork hurling.
— Paddy Connery (@padycork) September 17, 2017
collages n County champship has 2 b addressed,ucc had the bones of 5/6 future all stars against a club side.alot of club players hurting now
— James Fitzgerald ®™ (@jamesjjfitz) September 17, 2017
An absolute joke, barron, gleeson etc versus players waiting all summer to play and season over now
— db (@Pepeb72) September 17, 2017
Colleges and divisions should not be allowed in the cork championship.
— Patrick Horgan (@Hoggie088) September 17, 2017