Clean Ireland Recycling
County Junior A Football Final
Drom & Inch 5-10
Shannon Rovers 0-5
Favourites Drom & Inch claimed the County Junior A football title with a comprehensive win over Shannon Rovers. With conditions far from ideal the mid champions atoned for last year’s final defeat with a fine first half display into the teeth of a biting wind.
The victors were particularly strong down the centre with Seamus Callanan anchoring the defence at centre back whilst Tipperary U21 forward David Butler led an attack that seemed well drilled and crucially took their scoring chances.
Drom captain Jerome Ryan led by example in the third minute with a fine left footed point after a good surge forward from Declan Ryan and two minutes later the mid Tipp side found the net for the first time. Slack Rover’s passing allowed Drom break forward with speed before James Woodllock found David Butler who finished low past Michael Quinlan.
Rovers did enjoy an even share of early possession and the experienced pair of John Flannery and George Hannigan caused their opponents problems at midfield. Yet their attacks, particularly with a gale at their backs, were lateral and ponderous allowing a hungry and physically strong Drom defence opportunities to spoil.
A Flannery free that dropped short allowed Rovers’ full forward Eamon Costello to register his sides’ opening score but immediately Drom responded with another flowing move that yielded a Woodlock point.
Frustratingly for the Rovers’ strong support the North Champions couldn’t turn a huge work ethic and possession into scores and when goal chances did present themselves a combination of rash shooting and fine defending kept them at bay. A fine soccer pass from Barry Cahalan put James Stack through but he blazed a shot high to land Rovers’ second and final point of the opening half.
As the tie entered its second quarter Stack again, along with George Hannigan were denied two further goals with Drom keeper Shane Hassett doing particularly well to divert Hannigan’s shot that seemed destined for the top left corner.
In contrast the Drom attacks were incisive and their handling was sounder than that of their opponents and by half time they would add two goals and six points without reply.
After a David Collins’ free the impressive Eamon Buckley unselfishly supplied the unmarked Keith Nolan who finished to the net in style. From the kick out David Butler kicked a beauty and when Jerome Ryan stormed forward on the twentieth minute to land another fine effort the belief visibly drained from Shannon Rovers whose caused wasn’t helped with the normally reliable John Flannery off form from placed balls.
Only a smart Michael Quinlan save denied David Butler his second goal and he had to satisfy himself with a pointed free.
Drom’s third wasn’t long coming as clever combination work from Johnny Ryan and David Buckley set up James Woodlock who finished with a well placed shot. Johnny Ryan and midfielder James Moloney had the final points of the half and stretch the lead to an intimidating fifteen points.
The avalanche of scores that many suspected off Drom and Inch never materialised as Rovers fought to the very end and limited their opponents to just four second half scores.
Steady rain restricted both sides’ efforts and with the wind behind them Drom laid siege to Rovers’ goal.
Drom showed the strength at their disposal with the half time introduction of Joe Lupton and Liam Ryan but erratic early shooting, albeit in difficult conditions, meant they failed to add to their tally.
Eventually David Butler broke through for a goal but steady pressure from Shannon Rovers saw reward when a John Flannery free found the target after George Hannigan was fouled.
Drom and Inch – Shane Hassett, Kevin Butler, Michael Butler, Eddie Costello, Declan Ryan (0-1), Seamus Callinan, Johnny Ryan, Jerome Ryan (1-3), Jamie Moloney (0-1), James Woodlock (1-1), David Collins (0-2), EamonBuckley, Keith Nolan (1-0), David Butler (2-2), Michael Everard.Subs Joe Lupton for Moloney, Liam Ryan for Michael Everard, Paddy Kennedy for Keith Nolan.
Shannon Rovers – Michael Quinlan, Enda Hogan, Adrian Browne, John Costello, Julian O Halloran, Padraic O Meara, Colin Browne, George Hannigan (0-1), John Flannery (0-2), Barry Cahalan, Alan Hannigan, Austin Tierney, Michael Harding, Eamon Costello (0-1), James Stack (0-1). Subs - Paddy Heenan for Colin Browne, Danny O Halloran for Eamon Costello.
Referee – Sean Lonergan (Molye Rovers)