Late rally earns Barr’s replay with Douglas

THREE points without reply in the last five minutes was enough for St Finbarr’s to snatch a draw against Douglas in this City JAFC final played in atrocious conditions in Ballinlough on Saturday.

The Barr’s adapted to the conditions quicker, opting to play a direct game and pumping long balls into their forwards while Douglas struggled to master their short passing game. Fionán Murray was at the heart of every Barr’s attack, proving a reliable target man and exhibited top class distribution with early assists for Cian Madden and Paul Harte as the Togher outfit enjoyed a 0-5 to 0-2 lead after 20 minutes, both Douglas scores coming from midfielder Colm Lucey.

Having played the more attractive football, Douglas got their reward when Conor O’Donnell collected Patrick McSweeney’s pass and evaded the cover defence to rifle home a goal. With Lucey and Albert Clarke now bossing midfield Douglas notched three more points to take a 1-4 to 0-5 lead into the break.

The roles revered after the interval with the Barrs enjoying greater possession but points from Conor McCarthy and Tom O’Connor kept the goal between the teams. A Paul McCarthy free reduced the gap to two before tensions temporarily boiled over and a small melee manifested. With both teams clearly fired up the Barrs showed greater hunger, winning more breaking ball and crucially drawing frees from the Douglas defence which was starting to tire.

Two late frees from McCarthy and Cian Lougheed levelled the sides and despite sharing late wides, neither team could muster a winning score.

Scorers for St Finbarr’s: Paul Murphy 0-6 (5fs), C Madden 0-2, P Harte, F Murray, C Lougheed (f) 0-1 each.

Scorers for Douglas: C O’Donnell 1-3 (2fs), C Lucey 0-2, J Moylan, T O’Connor, C McCarthy 0-1 each.

ST FINBARR’S: D Murphy; I Power, J Burns, C O’Sullivan; C Lougheed, R McCarthy, D O’Brien; D Bracken, A O’Shea; D O’Brien, F Murray, P Murphy; C Madden, G Neff, P Harte.

Subs: T Guiheen for D O’Brien (37), E Finn for Murray (37), K Punch for O’Sullivan (45), A Callanan for G Neff (47).

DOUGLAS: J Prior; F O’Brien, R Keating, B Collins; N Gannon, D McSweeney, A Shinnoch; C Lucey, A Clarke; P McSweeney, J Moylan, B Cuthbert; C O’Donnell, T O’Connor, C McCarthy.

Subs: B O’Callaghan for Collins (48), C O’Brien for O’Connor (55), JP Kiely for McCarthy (56).

Referee: James Dorgan (Nemo Rangers).

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