Tipperary defeated Wicklow by 3-12 to 2-6 in round 2 of the Hastings Cup Under 21 Football competition on Saturday January 11th at Dr. Morris Park Thurles.
U21 Football Hastings Cup, Round 2
Tipperary v Wicklow
Saturday January 11th, Dr. Morris Pk 2pm.
Final Score, Tipperary 3-12 Wicklow 2-6
Report by Tommy Fitzgerald on behalf of Tipperary U21 Football.
Tipperary’s Under 21 Footballers made it back to back victories in the Hastings Cup on Saturday last in Dr. Morris Pk Thurles with a nine point margin win over Wicklow on a score line of 3-12 to 2-6.
Decimated with injuries and other players unavailable for duty, Tipp lined out with seven changes from the starting fifteen against Leitrim and despite a very sluggish opening fifteen minutes with two black cards to boot, Tipp regrouped with a dogged performance to fashion out a hard earned victory.
With Wicklow having travelled to Clonmel due to a communication mix up the game eventually got underway forty five minutes after the appointed starting time and showing no ill effects of the inconvenience, they hit the field playing an attacking brand of football similar to Tipp which the home team were finding hard to deal with and a battle was on the cards if Tipp were to succeed.
Right from the throw in points each by Paul Shanahan and a free by Sean Flynn opened the Tipp scoring but the early lead was quickly cancelled out as Wicklow anxious to make amends for a heavy defeat by Meath in the first round kept pushing forward and were rewarded with two well taken close in frees by Brendan McCrea and Theo Smyth to level matters.
A quick reply by Paul Shanahan picking up a ball on the edge of the square restored Tipp’s lead with a point but it was short lived and with ten minutes gone Wicklows wing forward Niall Clarke was on hand to fire home a goal and with it a two point advantage.
Both Sean Flynn and Tony Keady exchanged pointed frees but surely the big talking point of the game was the implementation of the new black card rule which saw the dismissal of Tipp’s Colin O’Riordan and John Meagher along with Wicklow’s Brendan McCrea in the first half to be followed by Conor O’Sullivan who fell foul of the new rule early in the second half.
Stung by the sending’s off Tipp reorganised and with Pierce Richardson and Kevin Fahey proving first class replacements, the tide turned and hitting a real purple patch added a further 3-3 to Wicklow’s one point in the remaining fifteen minutes of the first half to lead 3-7 to 1-3 at the break.
Dean McEnroe was on hand to find the net for the first of Tipp’s three goals when the Wicklow goalie Lee Brandon failed to deal with a goal bound shot, Dean McEnroe again followed with a point and Conor Kenneally collecting a perfect sixty metre pass from Paul Shanahan raced away from his marker to slot home goal number two.
Sean Flynn was again on target with a point while Drom/Inch’s Jamie Moloney finished off a slick passing movement with Tipp’s third goal and with time almost up in the first half Sean Flynn wrapped up the scoring with a pointed free.
The second half saw Wicklow fire everything at Tipp as they tried to get back in the game and despite the early exit of Conor O’Sullivan (black card) Tipp stood firm and weren’t to be denied and while Wicklow won the second half on the score board adding a further 1-3, Tipp added a further five points to bring their final tally to 3-12.
Sean Flynn (2) and one each by Mikey Quinlivan, Tom Meade and Conor Kenneally completed the scoring while Wicklow replied with three points by Tony Keady including 2 frees and a goal by substitute Alan Daly for a final scoring total to 2-6.
Overall a good solid performance by Tipp and given the number of absentees it speaks volumes of the quality of the wider Tipp panel.
Final score, Tipperary 3-12 Wicklow 2-6
Tipperary, Shane Hassett, Oisin O’Flynn, Niall O’Sullivan, Conor O’Sullivan, Jack Loughnane, John Meagher Capt., Tom Meade 0-1, Colin O’Riordan, Paul Shanahan 0-2, Jamie Moloney 1-0, Greg Henry, Dean McEnroe 1-1, Sean Flynn 0-6 (0-4 frees), Michael Quinlivan 0-1, Conor Kenneally 1-1.
Subs, Gearoid Slattery, Pierce Richardson for John Meagher (Black card / first half), Kevin Fahey for Colin O’Riordan (Black / first half), Daniel Guinan for Conor O’Sullivan (Black / second half), Ed O’Meara for Niall O’Sullivan, Mark Russell for Jamie Moloney.
Wicklow, Lee Brandon, John Miley, James Kavanagh, Stephen Heslip, Conor Hatton, Daniel Dawson, James Snell, Aaron Phelan, Shane Hogan, Niall Clarke 1-0, Theo Smyth 0-1 free, Ross O’Brien, Ger Byrne, Tony Keady 0-4 ( 0-3 frees), Brendan McCrea 0-1.
Subs. James Miley for Stephen Heslip, Alan Daly 1-0 for Brendan McCrea (Black / first half), David Tompkins for Ger Byrne, Darragh Lohan for Theo Smyth.
Referee, Brian Tyrell (Clonmel Commercials)