Guard of honour for Farna's farewell

St. Josephs (Borrisoleigh) 0-15 Farranferris 0-8

Team coach Niall Aherne found it difficult to talk after a game that saw the Tipperary school secure their place in the knock out stages as winners of their group.

Holding back the tears, Aherne said: "There are students still in the school who won't get the chance to play at this level. In any hurling school, the aim is to play Harty hurling. We have a great tradition in Farna but that has been taken from us now.

"It's difficult for me and the other teachers to try and understand why our school has to close to keep others open. You heard yourself the comments of the St. Josephs coach Kevin McCarthy and their captain Edward Costelloe when they addressed our players at the final whistle.

"They spoke in glowing terms about Farna and how synonymous the Harty Cup was with the school. I couldn't fault the lads for their efforts out there today, but it was always going to be difficult for us."

In one final gesture of sportsmanship, the St. Josephs players formed a guard of honour and clapped the Farranferris players onto their bus.

The game itself was a personal triumph for Borrisoleigh corner forward Brendan Maher, younger brother of Tipp senior Martin. He scored eight points of his tally and is a player of exceptional ability.

Josephs played with the wind in the opening half but didn't have matters all their own way. They opted to play three midfielders, moving their centre forward out, but for all their territorial advantage, could only manage an 0-3 to 0-1 lead at the end of the opening quarter.

However the extra man out around midfield did prove very effective and with Brendan Maher and Seamus Callanan regularly finding the target, St Josephs were well worth their 0-8 to 0-2 half time lead.

It would have been greater but for an excellent save by the Farna 'keeper Richard O'Keeffe, who denied Brendan Maher.

Farna were not going to go out without a fight, and with Niall Fahy, Darragh Hanifin and Shane Kelly hurling defiantly, Richard Whitty and Eric Nodwell knocked over two points each just after half time and a surprise looked on the cards.

However, this is a very solid Borrisoleigh side and the introduction of their captain Edward Costelloe, who didn't start due to injury, steadied the nerves.

With their half backline of Martin Treacy, Jody Harkin and Michael Ryan hurling superbly, St Josephs hit back with a vengeance and a succession of points by Brendan Maher finally brought the curtain down on a glorious era of Harty hurling for the Cork school.

Scorers: St. Josephs: B. Maher 0-8 (0-3 frees); S. Callanan 0-4 (0-2 frees); C. Moloney, P. Maher, E., Costelloe 0-1 each. Farranferris: R. Whitty, E. Nodwell (0-1 free, 0-1 65) 0-2 each; S. Kelly, D. Carroll, I. Looney, C. O'Sullivan 0-1 each.

ST. JOSEPHS: M. Ryan; A. Burke, A. O'Dwyer, P. Leahy; M. Treacy, J. Harkin, M. Ryan; S. O'Meara, S. Callanan; E. Walsh, C. Moloney, K. Cowan; B. Maher, M. Burke, P. Maher. Subs. E. Costelloe for Cowan; D. Cuddihy for Walsh; P. Ryan for Moloney; G. Treacy for P. Maher.

FARRANFERRIS: R. O'Keeffe; C. Looney, N. Fahy, J. Feehan; I. Fleming, D. Hanifin, R. McGinn; D. Deasy, S. Kelly; C. O'Sullivan, J. O'Rourke, I. Looney; D. Carroll, R. Whitty, E. Nodwell. Subs. K. Walsh for O'Rourke; A. Coleman for Nodwell; A. Virgo for Whitty; R. Qauine for Fahy.

Referee: D. Farrell (Mitchelstown).

More in this section

Sport Newsletter

Latest news from the world of sport, along with the best in opinion from our outstanding team of sports writers

Sign up