Despite the conditions, we were treated to
an exhibition in hurling in the Michael Quirke memorial tournament hosted in
the club on Saturday September 30th. A total of 8 teams competed across two
groups in a round robin format. Each team played at least 4 games or 5 if you
were lucky enough to reach the finals. Between the rain, skilful displays and
excitable mentors, the masses were fed and watered by the mother of the Douglas
players, something we were all grateful for. There were two hotly contested
finals with one of the Douglas teams reaching the cup final where they faced a
formidable Lismore outfit. This game went down to the wire with both teams
giving there all. Douglas prevailed in the end by a margin of 2 points. Special
mention must be given to the Douglas captain Ronan Dooley who gave a
masterclass in hurling throughout the day.
The plate final was won by Watergrasshill in another tightly contested affair.
Special thank to everyone who made the day possible, the mothers who fed & watered us, our volunteer referees and of course the teams who travelled (Watergreasshill, Ballinteer, Mount Sion, Lismore, Erins Own) and made the day the success that it was. Hopefully our paths will pass again in the future.
Douglas were crowned Rebel Og Fe14 Premier 1 County Hurling Champions last Saturday 2nd September 2017. After seeing off Sarsfields in the semi-final just 3 days earlier, they took on and beat a very good Midleton side in the final held at Ballinlough GAA grounds.
It was Midleton who started the better with some early scoring before Douglas got to grips with the individual battles around the field. However Douglas established a lead in the first half of this final that the wouldn’t relinquish, indeed they were to outscore Midleton in both halves.
Scoring opportunities were hard to come by but a brace of pointed frees from Stephen St Leger and a tasty point from play from Ben Bowler had Douglas keeping the scoreboard ticking over in the first half. However it was a contribution of two goals and a point from play from full forward, Mark Howell that were to prove crucial in determining the destination of the Sean Keohane Memorial Cup.
While scores were coming in the forward areas of the pitch there was also a mighty defensive effort being fought. Full back David Kelly, Center Back Daire Burke and wing back Ciaran Kenny defending tenaciously anything that the Midleton attack threw at them. Significantly they were to hold Midelton scoreless for almost 15 minutes of the first half. Yet a goal late in the opening half for Midleton left just two points between the teams at turn around.
HT Score: Midleton 1-05 v Douglas 2-04.
The efforts of the first half continued when the teams engaged again in the second period and it was Douglas, who, took a tight grip of the game for the first fifteen minutes of the second half.
Scoring chances were again at a premium but it was Douglas who were more efficient in converting theirs. A pointed free from St Leger and points from play from Bowler and Kevin Roche, in the middle period of the second half extended the lead to 5 points. Indeed that lead could have increased further as Douglas forward Colm O’Sullivan, squeezed a shot past the Midleton goalkeeper only to see it go the wrong side of the near post and rattle the side netting.
At the back some very committed defending by every one of the defensive unit kept the Midleton forwards from tacking on any scores. Indeed they frustrated Midleton and kept them scoreless for almost 17 minutes in that second period. But their work wasn’t done, as expected Midleton did come back into the game. They picked off two points to close the gap again and began to apply some intense pressure on the Douglas defense, but they did not buckle.
It was now forwards Aaron Sheehy and Conor O’Donovan along with midfielders Eoghan Nash and St Leger who were coming deep to pick up any clearances and lift the siege by turning these opportunities into Douglas attacks. One of those relieving clearances was picked up Sheehy and after a darting run he spilt the posts. As Midleton went searching for a goal to close the gap, goalkeeper Patrick O’Sullivan reacted extremely well to a drive and tipped it out for ’65, which was converted and followed by another score to leave just 2 point between the sides.
The last minutes saw Midleton try to manufacture a goal opportunity but with little success. After picking up a clearance and setting off on a run, Sheehy was fouled out near the left hand touch line on the 20m line. St Leger put the resulting free straight between the posts and the margin back to three points. Again it was the Douglas defense who were called into action to see out the game. With Michael O’Callaghan, Gearoid O’Sullivan , Mark Costello and substitute Louis Healy putting in ferocious tackles to ensure Midleton were thwarted again.
There were great scenes once the long whistle brought the game to a close and the signaled the county title heading to Douglas.
Final Score: Midleton 1-09 v Douglas 2-09.
Scorers for Douglas: M Howell 2.01, S St Leger 0.04(f), B Bowler 0.02, A Sheehy, K Roche 0.01 each.