Realt Dearg B team travelled up to Oldtown with the mission of qualifying for the semi final of championship for the first time . Wild Geese were the form team up at the top of the league and part of a RTE radio documentary that saw them get some expert training from an array of outside coaches. Realt Dearg had to make do with Jack Mc, Mulkere, Cian and Stephen Casey putting through paces
This game was not one for the pursuits but it was a tough physical battle that the Stars managed to squeeze through.
2 of the old guard with the Stars from day 1 Danger deady and Ross the fireman Kelly layed the foundations for this win with a number of timely interceptions, block, hooks and harassing. Danger was so stuck to his man it looked like he’d have to be surgically removed at full time. The Realt Dearg 6 backs and keeper mulkere were not in any mood to let in any handy scores. This was reflected in that Wild Geese were held to 1 point from play over the 60 mins.
The Stars suffered a big loss after 2 minutes with influential midfielder Ed Kavanagh having to cry off with an injured quad but no better man to be sprung that the recently returned and tanned Paul Warren. Warren would have a telling effect over the course of the remainder of the game with the most glorious scuttery half blocked shot from 30 yards in Dearg Bs history. Thousands will claim to have seen it in years to come.
Up front the forwards worked very hard and threw themselves into the physical battle but huge improvement will be needed to be in contention in the semi final. It’s a pity the free taker didn’t get a belt 20 mins before he did get it as it woke him up a small bit. Credit must go to Kevin McEvoys medical team who patched up with bandages and black hurley tape. That medic course really worked out well
Realt Dearg went in 4 points to 1 up at half time with a champagne point ( his words) from Tomissoft Kehoe and the best dearg move of the game with a number of passes from Ross Mc, Shane Murphy, Ger Kennedy and finished by Jack.
That was as good as it got up front for a long period as all 6 were guilty of shocking misses that will need to be worked on. It was 25 mins into the second half when stars had fallen 3 points behind after Geese seemed to have gotten a grip of the game before 65 when sailing over. The introduction of James Jedward Kenny had added a bit of badly need pace up front and his efforts lifted the team. From the puck out stars had a number of changes for goal before Paul Warren struck with 90 seconds left on the clock that went under the up to then very solid Geese number 1. What followed was the near total defence hurling with stars leaving only 2 men up in the forwards. Geese got a final chance after a very soft free in the wild geese defence was moved up due to realt dearg protests. Up stepped the wild geese number one but his effort dropped in around the house and hurleys, bodies, blood and finally the sliotar came back out before one last chance to geese went wide of the posts.
The resulting puck out from Mulkere went right over the sideline and into the next field with the final whistle from the referee leading to scenes from jubilation from the Stars team
Ross Fireman Kelly, Caoimhin, Pat Moran
Cian O’Brien ( Capt), Barry Ruth, Kevin “Danger” Deady
Smiley, Ed Kavanagh
Stephen Casey, Ross McKiernan, Tomissoft Kehoe (0-1)
Shane Murphy, Jack McNamara (0-4), Ger Kennedy
Subs Paul Warren (1-0), James Kenny, Seamus Ryan, David Kenneally, Ciaran Butler, Mick Butler, Liam Lanigan, James Doyle, Gavin o’Connell, Paddy Ryan, Tom McNiff
Injured: Mark Brennan, Brian Mulcahy, Stephen Barry, Johnny Griffin Emigrated: Colm Brennan Unavailable: Killian Roberts, Brian Goose Kelly, Mike Slattery
by Jack McNamara