CLONA MILK U21 CARBERY FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP
BLUES hold on in exciting U21 Championship fixture V Bandon
In a windy Wolfe Tone Park early on Sun morning , Bantry Blues hosted Bandon in the first round of the Carbery GAA CLONA Milk West Cork U21 Football Championship. With the wind blowing straight in from Bantry Bay straight up the pitch, this was going to make shooting difficult for both teams. The pitch however was in magnificent condition considering the volume of rain over the last couple of weeks.
The Blues played with the strong wind for the opening half, however the visitors opened the scoring after four minutes. The blues reacted well and pressed hard getting several scoring opportunities before Paddy Cronin raised a white flag from a well taken free. The visitors dominated play for a period but when opportunity came Jack Sheedy opened his account with a well taken point on ten minutes. While the blues had the wind at their backs, it was Bandon who held possession for large parts of the middle of the half. A great turnover ball out of the Blues defence led to a great counter attack where Paddy Cronin delivered a perfect 40m pass to Jack Sheedy who headed direct for goal and rattled the net on eighteen minutes.The Blues confidence was now high and they attacked hard putting lots of pressure on Bandon resulting in a converted free by Paddy Cronin. With continued pressure the Blues with another excellent accurate 40m kick pass out of defence by Oran Wiseman to Dara Sheedy, another green flag was raised on the twenty third minute.
Bandon now down by eight points were now under serious pressure but dug deep and took control of the closing minutes of the half scoring a goal and a point leaving four points between the sides at the break .
Half Time ; Bantry Blues 2-03 V 1-02 Bandon
The Blues would now be playing into a very strong wind in the second half and following a heavy half time shower, handling conditions were going to be slippy.
The blues started the half well with a point from Paddy Cronin, however this was negated quickly by another Bandon point. Bandon were fighting hard , but excellent defence by the blues kept them at bay.
After some great play in defence by Conor Cronin and John Crowley the blues set up Dara mcCarthy to split the posts with a point. Bandon reacted immediately with a point on the tenth minute of the half.This lifted the Bandon boys who again pressured the Blues and scored two more points to make it a three point game on the twentieth minute (2:05 to 1:05)
The closing ten minutes was a real battle with Dara Sheedy winning lots of possession and distributing well. A point from Jack Sheedy and Paddy Cronin gave the blues a five point lead with four minutes of normal time remaining. The game looked like it was in the bag, but these Bandon boys were not for giving up scoring another point with a minute to go. The crowd were now getting anxious as unsure how much added time would be played following several stoppages in the game. The young blues retained possession well, but Bandon turned over on the thirty second minute and broke down the field to beat the blues keeper to bring the difference between the teams down to the minimum. It was now pressure to win the kickout and retain possession, this they did for a further minute until the man in the middle whistled for full time.
FULL TIME ; Bantry Blues 2:07(13) V 2:06(12) Bandon
The Blues now face Ahan Gaels next weekend ( Date / Time & Venue to be confirmed)
A special mention must be made of the grounds committee at Wolfe Tone Park for the excellent condition the pitch was in and the well marked out lines on the pitch, which can be rare to find at this time of year.
Bantry Blues U21s Sponsored by Bantry Credit Union
Scorers ; Jack Sheedy 1:02 , Paddy Cronin 0:04 (03F),Dara Sheedy 1:00, Dara McCarthy 0:01
Bantry Blues (1) Ben Clancy (2) James Crowley (3) Conor Cronin (4) Ruairi Oshea (5) John Crowley (6) Patrick Goggin (7) Oran Wiseman (8) Dara McCarthy (9) Michael Odonovan (10) Luke SalterTownsend (11) Paddy Cronin (12) Ted Wiseman (13) Jack Sheedy (14) Noah Cronin (15) Dara Sheedy
(16) Eoghan Odonoghue (17) Fionn ODonovan (18) Conn Ocallaghan (19) Fionn Barry (20) Christopher Cronin (21) Daithi Shiels (22) Cillian OBrien (23) Mark Óg OSullivan (24) Daire Kingston (25) Owen ONeill
Substitutes used : Fionn Barry for John Crowley (inj) , Eoghan ODonoghue for Ben Clancy, Conn OCallaghan for Noah Cronin.
Back Row ; L to R ; Mark Óg OSillivan, Conor Cronin,Owen ONeill, Fionn Barry,Paddy Cronin, James Crowley,Patrick Goggin, Michael ODonovan,Noah Cronin, Eoghan ODonoghue,Fionn Odonovan, John Crowley, Oran Wiseman, Ted Wiseman
Front Row ; L to R; Damien Odonovan,Cillian Obrien,Daithi Shiels,Daire Kingston,Christopher Cronin,Luke SalterTownsend, Dara Sheedy,Ruairi OShea,Conn OCallaghan, Ben Clancy, Jack Sheedy, Dara McCarthy,