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Second-half goals seal Tipperary senior hurling final place for Kiladangan

Nenagh Éire Óg lost out by three points in today’s semi-final tie.

Sean Hayes bagged Kiladangan's third goal.
Sean Hayes bagged Kiladangan's third goal.
Image: James Crombie/INPHO

 

Kiladangan 3-12
Nenagh Éire Óg 1-15

THREE YEARS AFTER their maiden outing in the Tipperary senior hurling decider, Kiladangan have returned to the final stage in the Premier county.

They achieved that in an impressive fashion as well in completing their semi-final assignment this afternoon, overhauling Nenagh Éire Óg in the final quarter with a pair of goals proving timely in sealing victory.

It capped a memorable weekend for their club, Kiladangan’s intermediate side booking their place in the county final yesterday and guaranteeing that they will have two sides operating at senior level in 2020.

Their flagship side trailed by four points here entering the final quarter when the game switched decisively in their direction. First of all Dan O’Meara made the hard yards with an incisive run and he released to Paul Flynn, contributor of 1-3 overall, who finished neatly to the net. 

The same player snapped over a point shortly after to tie the teams, 2-11 to 1-14, and then Kiladangan’s third goal arrived. It was fortuitous as Sean Hayes shot after another impressive break forward with the sliotar slipping out of the grasp of goalkeeper Michael McNamara. The Nenagh netminder did redeem himself moments later with a stunning double save to deny Andy Loughnane and O’Meara.

Nenagh, last year’s beaten finalists and denied at the last hurdle also in 2013 and 2015, poured forward in the closing stages in a desperate attempt to rescue themselves. Jake Morris smashed over a point and saw another goalbound drive expertly tipped away by Barry Hogan, a member of Liam Sheedy’s conquering panel this season. Paddy Murphy looked dangerous as a focal point but Kiladangan’s defence was resolute and they closed the game out successfully.

After they had started the game tentatively, Kiladangan were provided with a major boost in the 21st minute. Tadhg Gallagher, who a minute previously had notched their opening score from play when he rifled over a point, popped a pass on the left wing to his brother Joe who accelerated into the space and fired home a terrific goal.

That pushed Kiladangan in front 1-4 to 0-5. Prior to that Nenagh had largely made the running with Michael Heffernan in superb scoring form and they did finish the first half on a high note with Morris bundling in a goal as they engineered a 1-11 to 1-7 interval advantage.

The second half began with the teams trading points but Nenagh still had that buffer on the scoreboard to fall back on as they kept Kiladangan at bay. But the Sean Treacy coached side raised green flags at critical junctures to progress to the decider on 3 November.

Scorers for Kiladangan: Willie Connors 0-6 (0-4f, 0-2 ’65), Paul Flynn 1-3, Joe Gallagher, Sean Hayes 1-0 each, Tadhg Gallagher 0-2, Billy Seymour 0-1 (0-1 sideline).

Scorers for Nenagh Éire Óg: Michael Heffernan 0-7 (0-4f,  0-1 ’65), Jake Morris 1-2, Paddy Murphy 0-3, Philip Hickey 0-2, Tommy Heffernan 0-1.

Kiladangan

1. Barry Hogan

17. Fergal Hayes
3. James Quigley
2. David Sweeney

7. Darren Moran
6. Alan Flynn
5. Declan McGrath

8. Jack Loughnane
9. Johnny Horan

10. Dan O’Meara
11. Willie Connors
12. Joe Gallagher (captain)

13. Tadhg Gallagher
15. Billy Seymour
14. Paul Flynn

Subs

20. Sean Hayes for Horan (half-time)
18. Andy Loughnane for Seymour (48)
4. Martin Minehan for Jack Loughnane (60)

Nenagh Éire Óg

16. Michael McNamara

4. Conor McCarthy
3. Hugh Maloney
2. Adam Gratton

5. Conor Ryan
7. Barry Heffernan
6. Daire Quinn

8. Killian Gleeson
9. Conor Hennessy

10. James Mackey
11. Tommy Heffernan
12. Paddy Murphy

15. Michael Heffernan (captain)
14. Philip Hickey
13. Jake Morris

Subs

22. Andrew Coffey for Hennessy (33)
21. Adam Healy for Tommy Heffernan (inj) (44)
23. Seanie Geaney for Mackey (55)

Referee: John McCormack (Knockavilla-Donaskeigh Kickhams)

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About the author:

Fintan O'Toole  / Reports from Semple Stadium

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