Eoghan Cormican, Páirc Uí Chaoimh
When Luke O’Farrell found himself one on one with Imokilly goalkeeper Dara O’Callaghan five minutes into the second half, the scoreline read 2-12 to 1-10 in favour of the divisional outfit. A goal here would have lit a fire under a Midleton challenge which wasn’t making much headway. O’Farrell, however, didn’t make a sweet connection with the sliotar. O’Callaghan saved and, six minutes later, Imokilly had doubled their goal tally to open up a nine-point game.
The abundance of talent running through this Imokilly team and indeed panel, as evidenced by Cork U21 centre-forward Declan Dalton and 2017 Cork minor Ger Millerick being introduced as second-half subs.
Bill Cooper. Youghal’s relegation to the intermediate ranks at the end of last year meant Cooper was eligible to throw his lot in with the East Cork division in 2018. Appearing in his first Cork SHC decider yesterday, the 30-year-old turned in a serious shift at midfield, getting through an amount of possession, as well as chipping in with four points from play.
Instead of collecting an eighth county championship, Midleton finished the afternoon with the same number of senior final defeats as they have wins.
The tendency of the Imokilly half-forward line to roam about the field, bringing their opposite numbers with them, meant the Midleton full-back line was left with an unwanted amount of space in front of them. They were exposed at various junctures and bar pulling an extra man back to sit in front of them, there was little the Midleton management could have done to quieten the raft of household names in the opposition forward unit.
BEST ON SHOW
Seamus Harnedy was outstanding for the winners. Had each member of the Midleton half-back line for company throughout this game and none were able to meaningfully curb his influence. His goal was a sublime individual effort, while his two-in-a-row just before the break was significant in re-establishing a bit of daylight between the sides.
Harnedy took a bang to the back of the neck towards the end and although the stretcher was called for, he was able to walk to the sideline, as well as climb the steps of the South Stand a few minutes later to collect the Seán Óg Murphy Cup
MAN IN THE MIDDLE
Was determined to use the whistle as little as possible. Midleton’s James Nagle should have been awarded a penalty at the death.
Midleton are away to Ballygunner in the Munster quarter-final on October 28.