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Callanan hits 1-9, Maher scores 0-12 and Drom defeat Borris after penalties in Tipp hurling thriller

A dramatic clash in Semple Stadium this evening.
Aug 30th 2020, 8:11 PM 36,405 7

Drom & Inch 4-19
Borris-Ileigh 1-28

(Drom & Inch win penalty shootout 3-1)

THE REIGNING TIPPERARY AND Munster kingpins exited their county hurling race tonight, Borris-Ileigh losing out in a blaze of drama after a penalty shootout at the hands of Drom & Inch.

It finished 3-1 in favour of the team managed by James Woodlock as the light faded at the Thurles venue after Brendan Maher, outstanding during the game as he struck 0-12, saw his penalty saved by Drom’s superb goalkeeper Eoin Collins.

David Collins, Seamus Callanan and David Butler had all seen their shots rattle the net for Drom & Inch, Johnny Ryan’s effort flying wide for the winners. The 2020 All-Ireland club finalists only managed to raise one green flag in the shootout courtesy of Jerry Kelly as both Conor Kenny and Kevin Maher could not find the target.

It was a remarkable evening of hurling with a surreal finale. There were five green flags raised during the 80 plus minutes of frantic action that ensued while both teams had penalties saved in that time frame as well, Collins and Maher both denied by the respective goalkeepers.

Drom & Inch, who had 1-9 from their county star Seamus Callanan, eventually managed to prevail. Their substitute David Butler was a major factor in their triumph, bagging 2-2 when he was sprung from the bench. The reward now is a semi-final with last year’s finalists Kiladangan with Loughmore-Castleiney to take on Nenagh Éire Óg in the other last four clash.

The standout moments were plenty, the scores flowed and the action was pulsating. After crunching the high numbers, a few incidents rise to prominence.

Normal time concluded with a bang as three goals arrived after the 60th minute mark. The first of those injury-time strikes looked to have sealed Borris-Ileigh’s victory when JD Devaney cut through and finished with aplomb, nudgin them 1-19 to 1-14 in front.

The champions celebrated that score that gave them a five-point cushion but Drom countered immediately with Callanan catching the defence unawares by managing to net from a 30-yard free. Borris countered with a Brendan Maher free but Drom kept battling with Shane Hassett clipping over a point and Butler, who made a great impression when brought on, lashing home what looked a potentially match-winning goal after the hard work of David Collins created the chance.

darren-oconnor-with-david-collins David Collins (file photo) caught the eye for Drom & Inch tonight. Source: Tommy Dickson/INPHO

Referee Fergal Horgan kept the play going though and it was Maher who proved Borris-Ileigh’s saviour with his 67th minute free from over 90 yards protecting their crowns and sending the exchanges to extra-time. His placed ball marksmanship was exceptional throughout.

It was 1-21 to 3-15 as the teams resumed. They traded points, Drom edging ahead 3-19 to 1-24 by the midway mark, before the game careered away. Borris-Ileigh seemed to have taken a grip on proceedings when they strung together a few points but then came a decisive incident.

Butler ran in to challenge as James McCormack went to gather possession and his hurley  hit the hand of the goalkeeper, who in frustration turned around and lashed a shot in the direction of the Drom forward. Referee Horgan had initially awarded a free out, shifted that call to a throw ball due to the show of dissent and Butler capitalised from the ensuing ruck to outmuscle a couple of defenders before booting home his second goal. 

The momentum spun towards Drom yet Borris were rescued by a marvellous score from Dan McCormack, which proved the effort that pushed this towards penalties, as a late chance for Collins drifted wide from distance. 

The tale of the first half for Drom & Inch would be expressed through a couple of openings for goals, they registered one and were denied on the other occasion.

Callanan smashed in a long-range free at a low trajectory in the 24th minute and when it collided with the crossbar, it was Drom’s Joey Maher that was most alert in a crowded goalmouth to flick to the net.

In first-half injury-time the persistence of Johnny Ryan created another when he was dragged down for a penalty. David Collins stepped up and saw Borris-Ileigh netminder James McCormack repel his first shot and then prove equal to the whip that was sent in from the rebound as well.

Drom & Inch were ahead 1-7 to 0-9 at the break but with Conor Kenny having a towering influence in attack and Maher as influential as ever, it looked like Borris-Ileigh’s night for a long stretch.

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conor-kenny Conor Kenny (file photo) scored 0-5 for Borris-Ileigh tonight. Source: James Crombie/INPHO

Yet Drom’s capacity to conjure up goals in open plays and later from penalties would be the defining characteristic on a night that was rich in hurling entertainment.

Scorers for Drom & Inch: Seamus Callanan 1-9 (1-6f), David Butler 2-2, Joey Maher 1-0, Michael Connors 0-2, John Campion 0-2, Lorcan Campion 0-1, Johnny Ryan 0-1, David Collins 0-1, Shane Hassett 0-1.

Scorers for Borris-Ileigh: Brendan Maher 0-12 (0-11f), Conor Kenny 0-5, JD Devaney 1-0, Jerry Kelly 0-3 (0-3f), Kevin Maher 0-2, Tommy Ryan 0-2, Dan McCormack 0-2, Ray McCormack 0-1, Shane Kenny 0-1.


1. James McCormack

3. Seamus Burke
7. Ray McCormack

2. Liam Ryan

4. Sean McCormack
6. Brendan Maher
5. Ciaran Cowan

8. Tommy Ryan
9. Dan McCormack

12. Conor Kenny
11. Jerry Kelly
10. James Devaney

15. Shane Kenny
14. Niall Kenny
13. Kevin Maher


21. Kieran Maher for Shane Kenny (43)
20. Paddy Stapleton for Cowan (57)
19. Matthew Stapleton for Kieran Maher (64)
17. Thomas Fahy for Sean McCormack (70)
18. Jody Harkin for Matthew Stapleton (70)

Drom & Inch

1. Eoin Collins

2. Jamie Moloney
3. Kevin Hassett

8. Robbie Long

4. Fintan Purcell
7. Podge Campion
19. Michael Campion

6. Johnny Ryan
9. Emmet Moloney

12. David Collins
10. Joey Maher
15. Michael Connors

13. Lorcan Campion
11. Seamus Callanan (captain)
20. Tommy Nolan


5. Liam Ryan for Michael Campion (36)
14. David Butler for Nolan (42)
18. John Campion for Ryan (46)
21. Stephen Nolan for Connors (55)
24. Shane Hassett for Emmett Moloney (61)
6. Johnny Ryan for Maher (77)

Referee: Fergal Horgan (Knockavilla Donaskeigh Kickhams)

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Fintan O'Toole


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