No mercy shown by dominant Rockies

No mercy shown by dominant Rockies

Cork SHC Round 1

Blackrock 2-27 - 1-10 Ballyhea

It became all too easy for Blackrock with a runaway victory over Ballyhea in the second game of the Cork SHC double-header at Páirc Uí Rinn on Saturday.

Before any sliotar was thrown in, this first round tie had a lot to live up to, given the excitement of the Charleville and Erin’s Own match beforehand.

But, once Blackrock settled following a sluggish start, there was never going to be an upset as they kept their foot firmly on the pedal.

Finalists from two years ago, and semi-finalists last year, the Rockies emerged impressive victors with no less than 11 players contributing to the scoresheet, including captain Niall Cashman and Andrew Murphy from the half-back line.

Blackrock manager Fergal Ryan pointed to the experience of his troops.

It was pleasing that the lads kept going until the very end. That is what you look for in a team, not to take their foot off the gas and that is what they did tonight. We ran out comprehensive winners.

"I think Ballyhea gave up the ghost a bit when we went eight points ahead. It may have made it look easier for us than what it actually was. But, yeah, very pleased with the win.

“We were looking for momentum. For the first 15 minutes we didn’t have it at all. Ballyhea went two or three up at one stage. Our first goal came at a good time for us, we were definitely at a bit of sixes and sevens.

"We weren’t tight enough. Albeit we had a good second 15 minutes, at half-time we wanted them to be clear on what we wanted them to do. I think they came out and did it in the second-half.”

Ballyhea, who defeated Killeagh in a relegation play-off in 2018, were competitive in the first half but they struggled in the second, only managing 1-1.

Maurice O’Sullivan’s goal three minutes after the restart gave them a glimmer of hope, but once Blackrock opened up, the Avondhu club couldn’t stay with them.

The north Cork team led by 0-5 to 1-0 after eight minutes. Tom Hanley (2) and Pa O’Callaghan (3) landing early points.

But their good work was nullified by John O’Sullivan’s brilliant solo goal which arrived in the third minute. Midway through the half, the sides were tied 1-3 to 0-6, and with every puck of the ball the city team were growing in stature.

Blackrock went on to score five points without reply, and the signs were ominous. Getting into their stride now, points flowed from all over the pitch including Daniel Meaney, Stephen Murphy, Ciarán Cormack and Kevin O’Keeffe who was in fantastic form.

As well, Mikey Browne did well to bundle the sliotar out for a ’65 in an effort to deny Kevin O’Keeffe what looked like it would be a certain goal. At half-time, the Rockies were 1-11 to 0-9 ahead.

With the exception of O’Sullivan’s goal, Blackrock resumed posting nine points on the trot. Michael O’Halloran, Cormack, O’Sullivan, Kevin O’Keeffe all to the fore as they raced 1-20 to 1-9 in front.

O’Callaghan got Ballyhea’s second score of the half in the 44th minute but Blackrock showed no mercy and with their defensive set-up rock-solid, Ballyhea would not register again.

Kevin O’Keeffe’s classy finish found the net eight minutes from time after he was fed a wonderful pass from Cormack.

Blackrock followed with another run of excellent points, leaving substitute Tadhg Deasy to stroke over their final score a minute from time. The result safe, there will be an extended break until the next round.

“I won’t say I am looking forward to the break,” said Ryan. “I think it is a big problem for the GAA, everybody has said it. I know they are trying to put measures in place but there is no real fix to it unless the inter-county scene changes and I don’t see that changing any time soon.

"That is the way it is and we have got to play within the terms that are there. We have that break now until August. We will give them a week or two off now We will just have to try and manage that.”

Scorers for Blackrock: K O’Keeffe (1-7, 0-3 frees, 0-1 65), J O’Sullivan (1-3), Ciarán Cormack (0-4), N Cashman (0-3), S Murphy, T Deasy and D Meaney (0-2 each), A Murphy, D O’Farrell, S O’Keeffe and M O’Halloran (0-1 each).

Scorers for Ballyhea: P O’Callaghan (0-7, 0-4 frees), M O’Sullivan (1-0), T Hanley (0-2), J Copps (0-1).


D O’Shea; J Ryan, G Norberg, R Laide; Cathal Cormack, A O’Callaghan, N Cashman (Capt); S Murphy, D O’Farrell; M O’Halloran, D Meaney, S O’Keeffe; J O’Sullivan, Ciarán Cormack, K O’Keeffe.

Subs: A Murphy for Cathal Cormack (24), T Deasy for A O’Callaghan (42).


M Browne; A Barrett, M Morrissey, W Carroll; T Foley, B Coleman (Capt), L Hanley; J Morrissey. C Cox; T Hanley, P O’Callaghan, G Morrissey; J Copps, M O’Sullivan, E O’Leary.

Subs: K Copps for T Foley (39), O O’Sullivan for W Carroll (50).

Referee: Cathal McAllister (Aghada).

More on this topic

Leinster chief rules out radical change to hurling championshipLeinster chief rules out radical change to hurling championship

Young hurler injured after helmet wire punctures his handYoung hurler injured after helmet wire punctures his hand

Different class: Hurling's end of season award winnersDifferent class: Hurling's end of season award winners

Hurling's Super 11s moving to New YorkHurling's Super 11s moving to New York

More in this Section

Robbie Henshaw's World Cup is NOT over, but he is not expected to face ScotlandRobbie Henshaw's World Cup is NOT over, but he is not expected to face Scotland

Antonio Brown scores on New England Patriots debut overshadowed by rape accusationAntonio Brown scores on New England Patriots debut overshadowed by rape accusation

Football rumours from the mediaFootball rumours from the media

The scary bit is that the champs are far from finishedThe scary bit is that the champs are far from finished


I’m giggling but also it is tinged with tension. I peep out from behind the large sycamore. They are three trees away.Opening Lines: I’m just a bearded wheezing giggly man on the ground

I did my Leaving Cert in June and have just started college this week, so my school experience is extremely fresh in my memory. I went to Davis College in Mallow and it was a fantastic experience. I was the loud obnoxious child at the back of the classroom from day one. I had to (and still do, by the way) have an opinion on everything.Stand up and be counted : The Young Offender's Demi Isaac Oviawe on college and school life

When I was in secondary school I started working part-time as a waitress and I suppose I caught the hospitality bug back then.You've been served: General manager at Inchydoney Island Lodge & Spa Caitriona O’Keeffe

That an American study has found straight women prefer dad bods (“an untoned and slightly plump male physique, especially one that is considered attractive”) to six packs and hard shiny abs comes as no great surprise.Outside the Box: Tone down guys, us girls don’t mind moobs

More From The Irish Examiner