Joy for Donard
Donard-The Glen 015, Hollywood 1-7: The final of the Keating Trophy, played under the Baltinglass lights on Friday night brought down the curtain on the Senior Football Championship, and what a fitting finale it proved to be, writes Peter Keogh. KEATING CUP FINAL
This is in effect the Senior B Championship and is played for annually by the eight teams that fail to make the quarter-finals of the Senior Football Championship.
After a fine game of football, played on good enough conditions Donard-Glen ended up clear and deserving winners. It was also Donard’s first trophy in Senior ranks in years and a fitting end to a reasonable good season for them.
The sides traded point for point in the early stages but Donard began to assert themselves in the second quarter with some good points, in particular from wing-forwards Dermot Daly and Harry Mangan to lead by 0-6 to 0-4 at half-time.
Hollywood were by no means out of contention and when big midfielder Pat O’Sullivan grabbed the only goal of the match in the seventh minute of the secondhalf they were back in front
Donard pulled away again and with Brian Lennon and Colm Toomey getting on top at midfield the pressure was on the Hollywood goal. A string of good points by Tommy Dwyer, Brian Lennon, Kevin Osbourne and Dermot Daly had victory secured well before the end.
Brian Lennon, who played a captain’s part all through opened the scoring with a point in the first minute but straight away Tony Hannon levelled the match and then put Hollywood in front from a second free. Lennon levelled the game for a second time in the fifth minute and for a time this game appeared to be developing into a battle between the two freetakers.
Hollywood were having a lot of the play but looked hell bent on turning Donard ‘keeper Enda Walshe into an All Star. While they were getting their shots on target a lot of them were dropping into the safe and grateful arms of the ‘keeper.
When a passing movement in the Hollywood defence broke down Dermot Daly nipped in to score the best point of the match. Tommy Dwyer, Daly and Harry Mangan added points with Minor Keith Peppard and Tony Hannon pulling back two for Hollywood to leave just two between the sids at the break.
Another Minor Ciarán Tyrrell won a free on the restart and Hannon pointed and when Tyrrell boxed down a ball at midfield it was his midfield patrner Pat 0’Sullivan who picked up the break to race through and slide his shot to the corner on the net.
Hollywood were in front for a second time but that score acted as a ‘wake up’ call for Donard who went on to dominate the rest of the match.
Donard-Glen manager/trainer Noel Keogh had to be happy with the overall display but in particular the way a number of the young players reacted to the challenge.
Brendan Daly had a great game at the centre of a good defence. Brian Lennon, my man of the match, and the hard grafting Colm Toomey made a good midfield pairing while all six forwards, none of them over 22 years, showed great promise.
Hollywood’s problems were mainly up front and this was underlined by the fact that their goal was scored by a midfielder and their last two points by defender Thomas Burke. Alan and John Mooney and Thomas and Owen Burke did well in defence.
County Chairman Andy O’Brien was on hand to present the cup to the Donard-Glen captain and congratulate both teams on a great game. Liam Keating who donated the cup in memory of his uncle Mick Keating, one of Wicklow’s greatest ever footballers, presented the medals and also joined in the congratulations. Referee Eddy Craul said this game was a joy to referee and he too congratulated both teams.