By Diarmuid Sheehan
Kanturk (Cork) 3-13 Middletown Na Fianna (Armagh) 0-12: Kanturk cruised into the All Ireland Intermediate Club Hurling Final today with a comprehensive dismissal of Ulster Champions Middletown Na Fianna of Armagh at a wet and windy Newbridge.
Early goals from Alan O’Keeffe (1) and intercounty keeper Anthony Nash (14) eased any early nerves on the Cork and Munster champions as Kanturk looked to put this one to bed well before the half time interval.
Credit to Middletown Na Fianna they stuck to the task managing five points (four from frees) by the break which left them just within touching distance as the sides headed for the changing rooms. (2-08 to 0-05).
Kanturk ratcheted up the pressure on the resumption when James Fitzpatrick bundled the ball over the Middletown line and this one was all but done. Kanturk will now head to the All-Ireland Final next weekend where they will face Leinster Champions St Patricks Ballyragget looking to secure their place in history.
Scorers for Kanturk: L McLoughlin 0-7 (four frees); A Nash 1-1 (1-0 Pen, 0-1 free); A O’Keeffe, J Fitzpatrick 1-0 each; A Walsh 0-2; I Walsh, J Browne, L O’Neill 0-1 each.
Scorers Middletown Na Fianna: R Gaffney 0-6 frees; K McKernan 0-2; N Curry (one free), M Maguire, C Carvill, D Carvill 0-1 each.
Kanturk: A Nash; P Walsh, J McLoughlin, E O’Connor; J Browne, M Healy; L McLoughlin, R Walsh; I Walsh, L O’Neill, A Walsh; A Sheehy, A O’Keeffe, J Fitzpatrick. Subs: D Kennelly for J Fitzpatrick (45), M O’Riordan for A Sheehy (52), D O’Connor for A Walsh (55), D O’Donoghue for A O’Keeffe (56).
Middletown na Fianna: F Woods; O Curry, P Gaffney, P Hughes; P Lappin, N Curry, T Nevin; P McBride, K McKernan; P Gaffney, C Carvill, D Carvill; M Moran, M Maguire, L Woods. Subs: S Toal for P Hughes (45), P Curry for P Lappin, B Mallon D Carvill (both 58).
Referee: G McGrath (Wexford)