It was hard to believe from witnessing this replay that these two sides could have ever produced an even contest, such was Kilbrittain’s dominance on the night. The 25 point winning margin by no means flattered the winners who were ruthless to the final whistle.
Kilbrittain selector John Burke remarked that things seemed to come together for his side on the day. “Our work rate today was hugely up on the last day,” he said. “In fairness to Aghabullogue they had championship football last week and that definitely put them off their hurling stride a bit.
“We were on top today. There were a lot of fellas playing below par for a while and today those lads stood up and came together. These guys should have been playing better and today they really did it for us and I hope they’ll carry on and keep doing it.”
After a scrappy opening two minutes Kilbrittain’s David Desmond stamped his authority on the game, getting his side off the mark with two exquisite points. His teammates soon followed his example as black and amber jerseys began to win every dual. Points from Tomás Harrington and a free from Maurice Sexton made sure Kilbrittain’s dominance was reflected on the scoreboard.
The game was effectively killed off in the 10th minute when Hayes latched onto a pass from Harrington and rifled his shot into the top right hand corner. By the time Aghabullogue opened their account on 20 minutes, Kilbrittain had struck three more points, two courtesy of the half back duo Paddy Ryan and Ross Cashman.
Whatever flicker of hope remained in Aghabullogue hearts was extinguished with Hayes’s second goal, struck low into the right hand corner from an acute angle, and helping Kilrittain to a 2-9 to 0-2 lead at half time.
There was no sign of complacency on the resumption with Owen Sexton firing home his team’s third goal seven minutes after the restart. With the contest over, both teams gave their subs a run on, though this had little bearing on the pattern of play.
Two identical Hayes goals in one minute heaped further humiliation on Aghabullogue who twice left the marksman in open space after incisive moves down the left flank and on both occasions Hayes made no mistake to claim a remarkable four goal tally.
Scorers for Kilbrittain: A Hayes 4-0, M Sexton 0-6 (4f), David Desmond 0-4 (1s), O Sexton 1-0, J Wall 0-2, T Harrington, P Ryan and R Cashman 0-1 each.
Scorers for Aghabullogue: P Finnegan 0-2 (2f), J Corkery 0-2, J Buckley 0-1.
KILBRITTAIN: T O’Regan; C Hickey, J Murphy, D Desmond; P Ryan, R Cashman, V O’Brien; D Hickey, J Deasy; M Sexton, J Wall, T Harrington; A Hayes, O Sexton, D Desmond.
Subs: C O’Leary for Harrington (47), N Quinlan for M Sexton (53), D Hayes for Cashman (55), I Burke for C Hickey (57).
AGHABULLOGUE: F Foley; J Corkery, J Foley, D Murphy; D Quinlan, B Kiely, D Buckley; N Buckley, P O’Rourke; P Finnegan, D Twomey, J Buckley; P Twomey, J Kelleher, J Corkery.
Subs: E Kennedy for D Buckley (19), B Buckley for P O’Rourke (ht), M Dennehy for P Twomey (ht), G Murphy for N Buckley (35), P Murphy for J Buckley (49).
Referee: J Bermingham (Bride Rovers).