Newmarket and Banteer seek league prize
THE pairing of Banteer and Newmarket looks set for an entertaining confrontation to the Twohigs Super Valu Junior A Hurling League Final in Kanturk on Friday evening.
An appealing struggle is expected between the pair as both teams are capable of playing attractive hurling to a league that offered keen competition.
It’s only the second occasion, the pair will meet in a league decider, the first just two seasons ago.
Newmarket finished strongly to nail their second title in three seasons after emerging 3-14 to 1-16 victors. On that occasion, Newmarket emerged the hungrier, more focused side and when the contest was in the melting pot, it was a 14-man Newmarket who held the slickness and efficiency to storm home four points victors.
The best hurling and most of the excitement surfaced during the second half where Newmarket’s sharper stickwork became very evident. Banteer offered real spirit during the course of the hour but it fell short and they found themselves on the receiving end of a late Newmarket purple patch with four points registered that ultimately decided the outcome.
Newmarket hold nine titles, four won during a productive spell in the 1970s before bridging 31 years to add to their collection in 2014 on a victory over Tullylease before accounting for Banteer.
Holders of five league accolades, Banteer have reserved some of their best performances in league finals particularly the back to back triumphs from 2011/2. However, their last two league final appearances ended in disappointment after consecutive defeats (2015/16) to Kilbrin.
Two of the more consistent sides in this hurling league adds interest and respective semi final wins over Kilbrin and Dromtariffe in games of swaying fortunes will surely sharper up both outfits. There is enormous potential in both Newmarket and Banteer and if the pair play up to scratch, then patrons are guaranteed an entertaining hour’s hurling.
Not easy to pick a winner, Banteer are reigning JAHC title holders and if they possess the hunger to reverse the league final defeat of 2016, they might be good enough to shade the spoils.
TOP: Kilshannig’s Andy Hourigan gets the sliothar away against Millstreet in the North Cork Rebel Og U-12 AI Hurling League Final BELOW: The Kilshannig team celebrate their win