Duane de­lighted to get out of Tralee with a win

The Corkman - - SPORT -

“I AM ab­so­lutely re­lieved to have got over the line,” was how Kan­turk coach Donough Duane put it in the im­me­di­ate af­ter­math of Kan­turk’s last gap vic­tory over Bal­ly­duff.

You could cer­tainly see where he was com­ing from. Bal­ly­duff seemed to be very much in the as­cen­dancy as the game reach ed its crunch point.

“We knew this Bal­ly­duff team would take us all the way down to the wire be­cause they have such pas­sion about their hurl­ing in north Kerry,” Duane con­tin­ued.

“They never gave up; they’re a big strong phys­i­cal team with a good wind be­hind them in the sec­ond half they were go­ing to keep go­ing. They got the goal to level the con­test but in fair­ness to some of our lead­ers through­out the pitch they kept calm.

“We kept say­ing we not be­hind there is still an op­por­tu­nity there and luck­ily it came our way we got the goal and we tagged two points to give us that cush­ion in in­jury time which set­tled us down but they were nervy times.

“We are de­lighted to be es­cap­ing out of Tralee with the win, they had a huge crowd there and there was a mas­sive at­mos­phere to the game. That game is a great help to us mov­ing on again so we will let the lads re­lax for the next few days be­cause they are af­ter a hec­tic nine or ten weeks be­tween hurl­ing and foot­ball.

“We can sit back now and bring the phys­ios in and get their en­ergy lev­els back up again be­cause play­ing county fi­nals can be not only phys­i­cally drain­ing, but men­tally drain­ing, emo­tion­ally drain­ing so they need time to re­cover and we will prob­a­bly meet up again on Wed­nes­day night and pre­pare for the fi­nal on Sun­day week.”

Duane was very happy with his de­fence, who were un­der se­vere pres­sure from the high balls drop­ping on top of their full­back line es­pe­cially with two reg­u­lar goal scor­ers in there – Ai­dan and Pádraig Boyle.

“I have been very happy with our de­fence all year. It’s the back­bone of the team and they are a very tena­cious and fit bunch. They know how to han­dle small and big op­po­nents but that was a huge test to­day in the phys­i­cal­ity that Bal­ly­duff brought and the long balls go­ing in, but I think we dealt well enough with them only con­ced­ing two goals, but with the amount of ball that was com­ing in two goals wasn’t bad es­pe­cially in the sec­ond half with the wind.”

When Paul O’Car­roll lev­elled the game in the 58th minute the Kan­turk boss must have been ner­vous at that stage?

“I was to be hon­est be­cause Bal­ly­duff had the mo­men­tum as they scored a few points be­fore that at which point I said we can’t con­cede a goal here if we want to win it and no sooner had I said it but the ball was in the back of the net.

“An­other team might have buck­led and folded down here in Kerry against a very good team who kept com­ing at us but they didn’t in­stead they went up the other end and turned the game in our favour.

“The first goal was a bul­let now from one of the Boyles, while the sec­ond goal An­thony [Nash] made a good save, but un­for­tu­nately we were caught out with the re­bound. It was a huge test for us and I al­ways knew that it would be.” MAIN MAN

It’s be­tween Ian Walsh – ex­cel­lent through­out and scorer of the win­ning­goal – and Mikey Boyle. We can’t not go for Boyle. He wasthe best manon­the pitch and­giveaper­fect demon­stra­tion of leadership in ac­tion.

TALK­ING POINT

Will Kerry ever getover­the hump in Mun­ster? Sure­lythey­will but an­oth­eryear goes by­with­out suc­cess atthis level.

KEY MO­MENT

Ian Walsh’s goal wasthe thing which fi­nally killed off a hugely spir­ited Bal­ly­duff per­for­mance. It was agreat moveby Kan­turk to set itup­too and­hestill needed a re­bound­from an ex­cel­lent PJ O’Gor­man­tose­cureit. Thiswas a game offine mar­gins

Jack Gould­ing Bal­ly­duff, in ac­tion against and Ryan Walsh, Kan­turk in ac­tion dur­ing the Mun­ster club IHC semi-fi­nal in Austin Stack Park on Sun­day Photo by Dom­nick Walsh / Eye Fo­cus

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