Murphy stands tall as Bishopstown progress

Bishopstown 1-11 St Finbarrs1-9

However, it did not prove to be the classic expected. Inept shooting from both sides led to a lack-lustre affair and for St Finbarr's, the chief culprits, it cost dearly.

But, when Bishopstown muse on their rival's failings, they will also feel indebted to the heroics of their goalkeeper Pat Murphy. He could do no wrong and already with three splendid saves under his belt, he finished the game with two vital stops from substitute Kevin McTiernan.

Before the Barrs could settle they found themselves in arrears to a well-taken Eoin McCarthy goal after being fed by full-forward Donal O'Mahony. These two players proved to be the difference between the attacks when they began to get a foothold in the inside forward line.

Losing 1-3 to 0-1, the Barrs fought back and when Denis O'Regan a former Bishopstown player collected from a loose ball, he made no mistake from close range. The Town went in front three more times but could not pull clear from a dogged Barrs and despite territorial advantage, could only muster a one-point advantage at the half, 1-6 to 1-5.

There was never more than a brace of points between them as the second period wore on. O'Mahony, who had switched out to right half-forward with McCarthy moving into the edge of the square, was winning much ball. By the three-quarter stage O'Driscoll and Rory McCarthy points had the Barrs within reach, but it was the Town who held their nerve. Substitutes were frantically being brought in by both sides but it was the introduction of Colm Murphy that lent Bishopstown a three-point cushion approaching the final five minutes.

O'Regan did carve open Bishopstown with a splendid point and when centre-back Adrian Furey converted a 65, the game hung in the balance. However, when Eoin Paul O'Callaghan gave away a needless free, O'Mahony struck sweetly over the bar to put daylight between the sides.

Scorers Bishopstown: E McCarthy 1-2, D O'Mahony 0-5 (0-3 frees), J Murphy 0-2, S O'Neill (65 metre) and C Murphy 0-1 each.

St Finbarr's: D O'Regan 1-1, R McCarthy and B O'Driscoll 0-2 each, Sean Barry, Robert O'Mahony, Adrian Furey (65 metre) and E P O'Callaghan 0-1 (free).

BISHOPSTOWN: P Murphy; S O'Neill, M Cogan (capt), O Deasy; T O'Donoghue, M Hayes, K McCarthy; B Cuthbert, P Condon; K O'Donoghue, C Doyle, R Conway; J Murphy, D O'Mahony, E McCarthy. Subs: N Fehily for E McCarthy (49 mins inj), C Murphy for R Conway (50 mins), K O'Grady for K McCarthy (54 mins inj).

ST FINBARR'S: S Barry; C O'Sullivan, D Murray, L Burns; P Buckley, A Furey, C Maher; R McCarthy, P McSweeney; E P O'Callaghan, B O'Driscoll, R O'Mahony; J McCarthy (capt), G O'Regan, D O'Regan. Subs: K McTiernan for G O'Regan (49 mins), J O'Regan for P McSweeney (50 mins).

Referee: P Hogan (Carrigtwohill).

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