Cork’s Church of Ireland were deserving winners of the Peard Cup final at Garryduff today.
They got the better of title-holders Bandon in what was an entertaining and competitive game, with Jonny Bruton’s goal in the 50th minute sealing the win.
The experience of the likes of John Jermyn, David Hobbs, and Phil Smith in their defence were telling factors in the end for CoI.
Bandon weren’t overawed by the favourites, and can’t be faulted for their efforts, having been in this game right up until Bruton’s strike. It was an uphill battle from then on but, to their credit, they battled until the end.
The first chance fell to Bandon when Fionn O’Leary’s shot was well saved from a penalty corner.
But Church of Ireland soon started to get the upper hand, as the warning signs for Bandon became increasingly clear.
Church of Ireland’s first chance fell to Jermyn from a penalty corner in the eighth minute, which was superbly blocked by O’Leary.
But a minute later Jermyn made no mistake as his drag-flick found the net. It took another superb save from Bandon keeper Ian Hosford to deny them a second, this time from a Bruton effort.
With 17 minutes gone, they were two up, when a reverse stick shot from Bruton was tapped over the line by Stephen Parker.
But Bandon battled away and they pulled one back just before half time when Karl Smyth got on the end of a through-ball from Ivor Sweetnam.
Chances were few at the start of the second half, the first real chance falling to Bruton — but he was denied by Colin Kingston.
The pressure eventually paid off however, when Phil Smith played Bruton in and he duly fired past Hosford to seal the win.
Bruton and Rob Sweetnam both had chances to increase their lead, but Hosford denied the former, and the latter’s shot went just wide, as Church of Ireland ran out deserving winners.
CHURCH OF IRELAND: P Coulter, A O’Callaghan, A Salter, M Collins, K O’Dea, S Wolfe, J Jermyn, J Bruton, P Sweetnam, M Gallagher, D Hobbs.
Rolling subs: R Sweetnam, D Lynch, S Parker, P Smith, P Byrne, C Dorgan, A Deane.
BANDON: I Hosford, F O’Leary, C Sweetnam, A Smith, R Smith, M Jennings, D Smith, C Kingston, I Perrott, E Hamilton Foott, R Smyth.
Rolling subs: I O’Neill, C Wood, C Crowley. I Sweetnam, E Nyhan, K Smyth.
Umpires: Malcolm Coombes and Trevor Gray.