Maher clinches it for Sars

THURLES SARSFIELDS dethroned Mid Tipperary senior hurling champions Drom Inch to claim their 41st divisional title at Templemore yesterday.

Clashes between the sides over the last number of seasons have been close and hard fought – and this was no exception as Drom-Inch came with a late charge as they battled to rescue their bid for three titles in-a-row. It wasn’t to be, however, as Sarsfields, with sub Ger O’Grady having a big impact, secured the win six minutes into injury-time with a point from centre-forward Denis Maher.

Thurles led from the start and an Aidan McCormack goal in the 13th minute gave them a massive boost. However, Drom-Inch hit back when a long-range Seamus Callanan free went all the way to the net in the 20th minute.

Sarsfields led 1-10 to 1-6 at the interval, but Drom Inch had a goal from Seamus Butler three minutes after the restart to kick-start their challenge. But it was Sarsfields who continued to do the business on the scoreboard with Aidan McCormack and Johnny Enright increasing their advantage.

It was a tense battle thereafter but Drom-Inch had three points from Seamus Callanan to leave one between the sides in injury-time. Try as they might they could not get back on terms and, with Padraic Maher and Michael Cahill superb for Thurles in defence, they weathered the storm and managed a Denis Maher insurance score in the 36th to win the title for the first time in 2007. The introduction of Ger O’Grady was hugely significant while Aidan McCormack, David Kennedy, Michael Gleeson and Barry O’Dwyer were also prominent.

Drom-Inch must now play again on Thursday evening in the county championship to get their season back on track.

SARSFIELDS: P McCormack; D Maher, P Maher, K O’Gorman; M Cahill, D Kennedy, B O’Dwyer; M Gleeson, A Kennedy 0-1; L Corbett 0-2, D Maher 0-2, P Bourke 0-1; R Ruth 0-1, J Enright 0-6, A McCormack 1-3.

Subs: G O’Grady for Ruth; M O’Brien for A McCormack.

DROM INCH: D Young; M Butler, P Stapleton, M Costelloe; James Ryan, E Buckely, Johnny Ryan; D Ryan, J Lillis; S Butler 1-1, S Callanan 1-6, M Butler; D Collins 0-1, P Kennedy, P Lupton.

Subs: S Delaney for Lillis; D Butler for M Butler; J Kennedy for D Collins.

Referee: Tom McGrath (Loughmore Castleiney).

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