Naas’s Jack Sheridan celebrates with with his father Jim after the game. Tommy Grealy/INPHO
landmark success

All-Ireland intermediate club champions Naas power into Leinster senior semi-final

Tom Mullally’s side ran out surprisingly comfortable 15-point winners over Shinrone of Offaly.

Naas (Kildare) 4-21

Shinrone (Offaly) 0-18

NAAS, ONLY CROWNED AIB All-Ireland intermediate club champions earlier this year, are eyeing up a potential glamour provincial senior semi-final clash with heavyweights Ballyhale Shamrocks after a landmark success in Newbridge.

Tom Mullally’s side, four-in-a-row Kildare champions, took the step up in standards in their stride as they ran out surprisingly comfortable 15-point winners, sealing a tie at Croke Park later this month.

Jack Sheridan fired 1-11 across the hour or so while Charlie Sheridan, dual player James Burke and Kevin Aherne also raised green flags.

Just three points separated the teams with 20 minutes to go but Naas took off from there, outscoring Shinrone by 2-10 to 0-4 in the closing stages to win with plenty to spare.

Their reward is a semi-final clash on 27 November with either Ballyhale Shamrocks, All-Ireland senior finalists earlier this year, or Westmeath’s Castletown Geoghegan. That quarter-final takes place tomorrow.

After a 15-minute delay to throw-in, Shinrone began as narrow favourites having overcome 2012 provincial winners Kilcormac Killoughey in the Offaly decider.

That was back on 2 October and, aside from having to cope with the lengthy break, they also suffered a blow in the meantime with the loss of full-forward and county final Man of the Match Ciaran Cleary.

His five points from play in the county decider proved decisive and the visitors lacked his scoring threat this time, blasting seven wides in the first-half alone.

They were costly misses as the two Naas goals, from Charlie Sheridan and Aherne in the ninth and 25th minutes, left Naas in pole position throughout.

Both of those first-half goals were set up by Cathal Dowling who, on both occasions, burst clear, the first time on the left wing and the second time on the right, before cleverly offloading.

The Charlie Sheridan goal left Naas 1-3 to 0-1 ahead and indicated that Shinrone could be in for a long afternoon in Newbridge.

A week after the Naas footballers bowed out of their provincial competition, the hurlers – with dual players James Burke and Brian Byrne in attack – brought their unique brand of hungry hurling to the contest, smothering Shinrone around the pitch and moving the ball precisely through the hands.

kevin-aherne-with-luke-watkins-and-killian-sampson Naas's Kevin Aherne with Luke Watkins and Killian Sampson of Shinrone. Tommy Grealy / INPHO Tommy Grealy / INPHO / INPHO

They led 2-7 to 0-8 at half-time and should have been further clear with seven wides costing them.

Dowling closed out the first-half scoring for Naas with a tidy score from distance.

Shinrone, making their debut in the competition as first time Offaly champions, narrowed the gap to three points on three occasions during the third quarter of the game as they upped the intensity noticeably.

But points from Byrne and free-taker Jack Sheridan, followed by a third Naas goal in the 44th minute from Burke, swung the game and ultimately broke Shinrone’s resolve.

From there on, it was all Naas and the Kildare men strode to an impressive win with Jack Sheridan’s 55th minute goal a victory for hard work and persistence after his initial one-handed shot was blocked.

Naas scorers: Jack Sheridan 1-11 (0-10f), Kevin Aherne 1-1, Charlie Sheridan & James Burke 1-0 each, Brian Byrne, Simon Leacy and Cathal Dowling 0-2 each, Harry Carroll, Kevin Whelan and Conan Boran 0-1 each.

Shinrone scorers: Donal Morkan 0-11 (0-11f), Dara Maher 0-2, Killian Sampson (0-1 s/l), Sean Cleary, Luke Watkins, Jason Sampson and Declan Cleary 0-1 each.


1. Cormac Gallagher

2. John McKeon, 18. Ross Kelly, 4. Peter O’Donoghue

7. Harry Carroll, 8. Sean Gainey, 5. Kevin Whelan

6. Rian Boran, 9. Simon Leacy

11. James Burke, 13. Brian Byrne, 23. Kevin Aherne

21. Charlie Sheridan, 15. Cathal Dowling, 14. Jack Sheridan


22. Conan Boran for Whelan (43)

12. Liam Walsh for McKeon (59)

19. Ferran O’Sullivan for Charlie Sheridan (61)

17. Rian Monaghan for Byrne (62)

10. Conor Dowling for Burke (64)


1. Eamonn Cleary

4. Darren O’Meara, 3. Peter Cleary, 2. Darren Crean

5. Killian Sampson, 6. Michael Cleary, 7. Dara Maher

8. Declan Cleary, 9. Luke Watkins

15. Jason Sampson, 11. Donal Morkan, 12. Adrian Cleary

13. Paul Cleary, 14. Conor Doughan, 10. Sean Cleary


20. Adam Landy for Declan Cleary (47)

21. DJ McLoughlin for Paul Cleary (55)

18. Darragh Landy for Watkins (59)

Referee: Caymon Flynn (Westmeath).


Elsewhere, St Mary’s-Kiltoghert (Leitrim) were 3-8 to 1-8 winners over St Kiernan’s (London) in this afternoon’s Connacht senior football club championship quarter-final in Ruislip.

Two last-gasp goals from Jack Barnes and Nicholas McWeeney ultimately settled the game. The Leitrim outfit will face Sligo opposition in Tourlestrane in next weekend’s semi-final.

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