AGB emerge as ma­jor threat af­ter thump­ing win

Wicklow People (West Edition) - - SPORT - LIAM O’LOUGH­LIN at Avon­dale

AGB came into this game un­de­feated in the Se­nior foot­ball cham­pi­onship. They had two draws and two wins.

Annacurra, for their part, had no wins to their credit. They too had one draw but were play­ing for their pride in this game.

AGB were odds on favourites to win but no team is en­ti­tled to a cham­pi­onship win. They must merit that win. And the Ark­low side more than de­served this big win in the Se­nior foot­ball cham­pi­onship played against Annacurra in Avon­dale on Fri­day night last.

Right from the throw in the Ark­low men at­tempted to use their su­pe­rior speed and fit­ness to run at their op­po­nents from al­most any lo­ca­tion on the field.

Dar­ragh Fitzger­ald, Stephen Hur­ley and Cor­mac O’Shea had three points on the board in the first five min­utes.

Annacurra were strug­gling to stay with the blis­ter­ing pace of AGB in these early min­utes. Frank Clune got their first point in the sev­enth minute, but JP Hur­ley and Stephen Hur­ley re­sponded with two quick points.

The AGB half for­wards were com­ing back into their own half to col­lect ball. Their mark­ers were com­ing with them thus cre­at­ing acres of space in front of the full-for­wards.

Frank Clune pointed from a free in the tenth minute. From this point on the Ark­low men be­gan to utilise the space they were cre­at­ing and went on a scor­ing spree un­til half-time.

Cor­mac O’Shea pointed again and was then put through with a long ball from out­field to set up Cathal Kelleher for the first goal of the game. O’Shea and Healy fol­lowed with two quick points and then came fur­ther dis­as­ter for Annacurra when a kick out went astray, and Kelleher set up Philip Healy for the Ark­low side’s sec­ond goal.

In a rare Annacurra at­tack Shane O’Ke­effe scored the third point for his side. Back came AGB with points from Chris O’Brien, JP Hur­ley, Stephen Hur­ley and an­other for Cor­mac O’Shea just be­fore the half-time whis­tle.

Annacurra full-back James Keenan got for­ward to land the fourth Annacurra point.

Just be­fore half-time the Der­rysiders lost Alan Ho­ran to a black card.

He was re­placed by Michael Doyle, who went into goal and Bob Fitzger­ald came out­field. With the half-time score at 2-12 to 0-4 the game was ef­fec­tively over.

Annacurra got the first two points of the sec­ond half from Frank Clune and Dean Barnes. AGB had a cou­ple of early wides but then struck for two goals.

The first came from over­lap­ping wing back An­drew Ma­her who came for­ward and fin­ished a move he had started out­field. The sec­ond was scored by Phil Healy, who ran on to a long kick from out­field and guided the ball past Michael Doyle for the fourth AGB goal.

From here to the end, AGB scored a fur­ther five points from Philip Healy, Cor­mac O’Shea, James Tyrell, JP Hur­ley and sub Tier­nan McBride.

In the same pe­riod Annacurra ac­tu­ally scored more than their op­po­nents with points from Clune, Ian McDon­ald and Gearoid Mur­phy who also scored a won­der­ful goal in the 21st minute when he no­ticed Mervyn Travers way off his line and chipped him with a great shot from 40 me­tres out.

Frank Clune, who put in a great sec­ond half, was wide from a penalty in the last few min­utes. AGB ran out win­ners on a score of 4-17 to 1-9.

Scor­ers – AGB: Philip Healy 2-2, Cor­mac O’Shea 0-5, Cathal Kelleher 1-0, An­drew Ma­her 1-0, JP Hur­ley 0-3, Stephan Hur­ley 0-3, Dar­ragh Fitzger­ald, Chris O’Brien, James Tyrell, Tier­nan McBride all 0-1. Annacurra: Frank Clune 0-4, Gearoid Mur­phy 1-1, Shane O’Ke­effe, James Keenan, Dean Barnes, Ian McDon­ald all 0-1.

AGB: Mervyn Travers; Tom Ma­her, Jim Tyrell, Ciaran O’Shea; Cal Kelly, Ciaran Hy­land, Andy Ma­her; JP Hur­ley, Chris O’Brien; Dar­ragh Fitzger­ald, Cor­mac O’Shea, Peter Hem­pen­stall; Philip Healy, Cathal , Stephan Hur­ley. Subs. Tier­nan McBride, Dar­ragh Cul­leton, Tadgh Cal­la­han, Jack Hamil­ton, Philip Glee­son.

Annacurra: Bob Fitzger­ald; Shane McAllister, James Keenan, Liam Moules; Mick Healy, Paul McDon­ald, Alan Byrne; Martin O’Brien, Michael O’Brien; Dean Barnes, Gearoid Mur­phy, Ian McDon­ald; Shane O’Ke­effe, Frank Clune, Alan Ho­ran. Subs Michael Doyle, Elliot Robin­son.

Ref­eree: An­thony Nolan (Balt­in­glass)

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