Painful de­feat for Ti­na­hely in Leinster

Wicklow People - - SPORT - DO­MINIC LEECH at Ti­na­hely

TI­NA­HELY, the Wick­low Se­nior cham­pi­ons, hosted the Meath cham­pi­ons, Dun­boyne, last Satur­day in the pic­turesque south vil­lage and the crowds thronged to sup­port both teams in a much an­tic­i­pated Leinster Club In­ter­me­di­ate Cham­pi­onship quar­ter-fi­nal. This was a match that was to en­thral the sup­port­ers and kept ev­ery­one on the edge of their seats through­out.

Dur­ing the first half, Ti­na­hely were the dom­i­nant team and set­tled well with two Laura Ho­gan points and then a brace of goals by Jackie Kinch and Sarah Byrne gave Ti­na­hely a lead by the 16th minute with the score read­ing 2-02 to 0-3.

How­ever, in a strange turn of fate, Ti­na­hely were not to score for the re­main­der of the half while Dun­boyne reeled off five points in a row to leave the half-time scores level at 2-02 to 0-08 each.

The sec­ond half fol­lowed a sim­i­lar pat­tern to the first with Ti­na­hely again hit­ting a scor­ing spree and when Jackie Kinch again goaled sand­wiched be­tween points by Sarah Byrne and Laura Ho­gan the lead again had stretched to four points.

But, again, the Dun­boyne girls roared back and got a goal of their own to­gether with two points to again take the lead by a point as we en­tered the fi­nal quar­ter.

Then a four-point salvo from Ciara Byrne (3) and Rachael Byrne put Ti­na­hely again in the driv­ing seat to lead by three with five min­utes re­main­ing.

Some­how Dun­boyne re­grouped and in a wel­ter of ex­cite­ment replied with three points of their own to tie the game.

When Dublin ref­eree Fin­barr Shana­han blew the fi­nal whis­tle the scores re­mained tied and a pe­riod of ex­tra-time was then pre­pared for by both squads.

The ex­tra-time again showed how re­silient both teams were with Aoife Gor­man and Jackie Kinch point­ing for Ti­na­hely only to be replied with sim­i­lar scores from their op­po­si­tion.

Then Dun­boyne worked a goal which in truth looked to have put the game be­yond the Ti­na­hely girls but, again, they dug deep and frees by Laura Ho­gan and two fur­ther points, again from frees by Rachael Byrne tied the game with time beck­on­ing.

As the ref­eree again blew the long whis­tle, the re­al­i­sa­tion dawned that we were head­ing for the aw­ful prospect of a free-kick shoot-out to de­cide the game.

Both teams were aware of the free-kick pos­si­bil­ity but it cer­tainly may be an ex­cit­ing way to de­cide a con­test but it is also the tough­est way to lose out in such an im­por­tant com­pe­ti­tion.

After five frees the scores were still tied and we en­tered sud­den death and in the end Dun­boyne won out after a fur­ther four kicks failed to sep­a­rate the teams. Ti­na­hely were dev­as­tated with Dun­boyne ex­hil­a­rated.

How­ever, the class of both teams who em­braced and sup­ported each other in sym­pa­thy was im­me­di­ately ev­i­dent.

Then as both teams left the field – first Dun­boyne then Ti­na­hely – the sup­port­ers showed huge re­spect in par­tic­u­lar the Ti­na­hely sup­port­ers who to­gether with the Dun­boyne sup­port­ers gave both teams a stand­ing ova­tion hav­ing watched such an im­mense bat­tle by two hugely sport­ing teams.

Ti­na­hely hosted this match with their usual aplomb with the stew­ards and helpers ev­ery­where to help out in any way.

The only thing miss­ing was the right re­sult for the red and white but we in Wick­low, to­gether with the Ti­na­hely sup­port­ers, can be rightly proud of our won­der­ful cham­pi­ons (play­ers and man­age­ment alike) who gave ev­ery­thing but were so un­for­tu­nate to come up short in what amounts to a lot­tery of the cruel free kick shoot-out.

They will even­tu­ally have their day – of that I am sure—and cer­tainly no one will say they don’t de­serve it.

Con­grat­u­la­tions to both teams for pro­vid­ing such a won­der­fully sport­ing com­pet­i­tive game and we wish Dun­boyne all the best in the re­main­der of the com­pe­ti­tion.

Ti­na­hely: Shauna Ber­ming­ham, Ciara Stokes, Sarah Ho­gan, Emily Had­den, Emily Mul­hall, Ni­amh Kenny (Capt), Aimee Ma­her, Jessie Byrne, Aoife Gor­man 0-01, Ciara Stokes, Sarah Byrne1-01, Jackie Kinch 2-02, Ciara Byrne 0-03, Aine Byrne 0-01, Sinead Byrne, Laura Ho­gan 0-04, Rachael Byrne 0-02, Aoife O’Neill, Ais­ling Win­ter­botham, Lucy Mul­hall, Kate Hat­ton, Tri­ona Byrne, Aine O’Ke­effe, Orla Kealy, Emma Ka­tus, Re­becca Kelly, Dervla Byrne, Abby Doyle, Siofra Byrne, Eimear O’Brien.

Ti­na­hely’s Sinead Byrne and Dun­boyne’s Claire Barker in ac­tion in Ti­na­hely.)

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