Bray knock hold­ers out of cham­pi­onship

Em­mets shock Balt­in­glass in Se­nior foot­ball quar­ter-fi­nal

Bray People - - Sport - Mark KENNEDY

THE BIG shock in the quar­ter-fi­nals of Wick­low’s Se­nior foot­ball cham­pi­onship was the de­feat of de­fend­ing cham­pi­ons Balt­in­glass in sen­sa­tional fash­ion at Aughrim at the week­end.

Balt­in­glass, who won their first Se­nior cham­pi­onship in over a decade in 2007, were one of the strongly fan­cied sides to put backto-back ti­tles to­gether in 2008.

For over half Satur­day’s match they looked to be on track to reach the semi- fi­nals but af­ter the change over vic­tors Bray Em­mets grew stronger and stronger, grew in con­fi­dence and swag­ger, clinch­ing their feisty 0-10 to 0-9 win with a point from a free by John Kinch deep in in­jury-time af­ter the sides had been dead­locked at 0-9 each for over ten min­utes.

Bray Em­mets, whose as­sault on the Balt­in­glass goal was al­most re­lent­less in the last quar­ter, have gained a lot of new ad­mir­ers as a re­sult of this some­what un­ex­pected win and they will now be the choice of many afi­ciona­dos to take the Mi­ley Cup to the north of the county this year.

How­ever, there are three other semi-fi­nal­ists who would strongly dis­pute that as­ser­tion, not least their semi- fi­nal op­po­nents St. Pa­trick’s, who staked a strong claim to an­nex­ing their third Se­nior crown in five years with their 1-14 to 2-9 victory over game Bless­ing­ton.

A heart­en­ing omen for the Wick­low town team, who won ti­tles in 2004 and 2006, is the re­turn to top form of Paul Earls, who ac­counted for 1-7 of their to­tal with a bril­liant per­for­mance from the full-for­ward po­si­tion.

Kil­te­gan won their way to the semi-fi­nals with a nar­row 2-10 to 1-10 victory over neigh­bours Strat­ford in an all west derby quar­ter­fi­nal, and they will now meet Rath­new who were 1-12 to 0-9 win­ners over New­town in the last of the quar­ter-fi­nals.

Kil­te­gan beat Rath­new on their way to the fi­nal of 2006 but at the mo­ment they do not seem to be play­ing with the same flair as two years ago and that fact alone just might tip the bal­ance to­wards the men from the Thatched Vil­lage on this oc­ca­sion.

Rory Nolan of Balt­in­glass tries to shake off the at­ten­tions of Bray's Jonathan Kinch dur­ing their Se­nior foot­ball cham­pi­onship quar­ter-fi­nal.

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