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O'Sullivan the Imokilly hero as he rescues Cork hurling semi-final draw against Sarsfields

The Cloyne man popped up with the vital late point.

Paudie O’Sullivan Paudie O'Sullivan was the saviour for Imokilly. Source: James Crombie/INPHO

Imokilly 1-24
Sarsfields 2-21

Fintan O’Toole reports from Páirc Uí Chaoimh

PAUDIE O’SULLIVAN PROVED the saviour for Imokilly as his last-gasp point in injury-time salvaged a draw for the divisonal outfit against Sarsfields in this afternoon’s Cork senior hurling semi-final at Páirc Uí Chaoimh.

Former Cork senior O’Sullivan seized a breaking ball and arrowed over a shot off his left under pressure to bring the sides level, just moments after Cork senior midfielder Daniel Kearney launched over his third point of the game for what looked to be the match-winning score.

Sarsfields – champions in 2008, 2010, 2012 and 2014 – seemed to be on course for their eighth Cork senior hurling decider in ten seasons before being pegged back. They themselves had come from behind when they trailed 1-20 to 2-17 but were boosted by Tadhg Óg Murphy scrambling home a 55th minute goal after the sliotar broke to him from Gavin O’Loughlin.

Daniel Kearney Sarsfields Daniel Kearney

In a frenetic finale, both sides enjoyed advantages on the scoreboard but they could not be separated at the final whistle. A replay will be required next weekend to determine who meets Blackrock in the decider on 22 October and both outfits are battle hardened at this juncture after emerging victorious from quarter-final replays last weekend.

Seamus Harnedy Cork's Seamus Harnedy was in action today for Imokilly. Source: Oisin Keniry/INPHO

It was a high quality contest from the off but after forging leads at various stages, Imokilly will be disappointed not to have settled the contest. Harnedy and O’Sullivan came good for them in the closing stages yet it was the Aghada duo of Cian Fleming and Wiliam Leahy who were central to their cause.

Leahy’s free-taking helped him amass 0-6 while Fleming was the major threat as he struck 1-5 from play. His speed and trickery caused problems for Sarsfields rearguard with his powerful shot to the net in the 8th minute, helping Imokilly go 1-6 to 0-3 clear after the opening quarter.

Sarsfields recovered with Jack O’Connor’s pace taking him clear of the defence for a goal in the 22nd minute but they still trailed 1-11 to 1-8 at the interval. Four Sarsfields points without reply brought them level at 1-13 apiece by the 39th minute yet they could not move clear on the scoreboard in the second half as Imokilly remained in the ascendancy.

Murphy’s goal was almost the springboard for a Sarsfields comeback success before Imokilly hauled them back at the finish.

Scorers for Imokilly: Cian Fleming 1-5, William Leahy 0-6 (0-5f), Declan Dalton 0-3 (0-2f, 0-1 ’65), Paudie O’Sullivan, Seamus Harnedy, Ian Cahill, Brian Mulcahy 0-2 each, Brian Lawton, Josh Beausang 0-1 each.

Scorers for Sarsfields: Jack O’Connor, Tadhg Óg Murphy 1-2 each, Daniel Kearney, Eoin O’Sullivan (0-1f) 0-3 each, William Kearney, Aaron Myers (0-2f), Eoin Quigley 0-2 each, Liam Healy, Luke Hackett 0-1 each.

Imokilly

1. Declan Dalton (Fr O’Neill’s)

2. Barra Ó Tuama (Castlemartyr)
3. Colm Barry (Castlelyons)
4. Kieran Histon (Cobh)

5. Ciaran O’Brien (St Ita’s)
6. Niall O’Leary (Castlelyons)
7. John Cronin (Lisgoold)

8. Mark O’Keeffe (Fr O’Neill’s)
9. Brian Lawton (Castlemartyr)

10. William Leahy (Aghada)
11. Paudie O’Sullivan (Cloyne)
12. Seamus Harnedy (St Ita’s – captain)

13. Josh Beausang (Russell Rovers)
14. Ian Cahill (Cloyne)
15. Cian Fleming (Aghada)

Subs

19. Brian Mulcahy (St Catherine’s) for Beausang (half-time)
20. Ger Mellerick (Fr O’Neill’s) for Histon (43)
21. Liam O’Shea (Lisgoold) for Cahill (61)

Sarsfields

1. Alan Kennedy

2. William Kearney
3. Craig Leahy (captain)
4. Paul Leopold

5. Eoghan Murphy
6. Conor O’Sullivan
7. Garry Grey

8. Cian Smith
9. Daniel Roche

10. Eoin Quigley
11. Daniel Kearney
23. Eoin O’Sullivan

13. Jack O’Connor
14. Cormac Duggan
15. Tadhg Óg Murphy

Subs

24. Liam Healy for Smith (half-time)
26. Gavin O’Loughlin for Duggan (42)
12. Aaron Myers for Eoin O’Sullivan (50)
28. Luke Hackett for Roche (56)
Referee: Nathan Wall (Carrigaline)

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About the author:

Fintan O'Toole

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