A huge crowd attended expecting a classic but inside ten minutes, Bourke had bagged three goals for Sarsfields from 20m frees leaving a shell-shocked Loughmore trailing 3-4 to 0-2.
And it didn’t stop there as, in injury time before the interval, he added two more to put Sarsfields in an almost unassailable position leading 5-7 to 1-5. Loughmore’s sole consolation was Noel McGrath’s goal in the 21st minute.
A mighty effort was required of the holders in the second half but it didn’t materialise. Loughmore scored five points to Sarsfields two but Pa Bourke’s sixth goal in the 46th minute ended all possibility of a Loughmore rally. Sub Aidan McCormack banged home goal number seven in the 22nd minute, and though Noel McGrath netted for Loughmore four minutes later, the game was well and truly over.
Bourke was withdrawn shortly before the finish and received a standing ovation for a scoring performance that will have historians scouring the record books.
It was by no means a one-man show however. Padraic Maher, Michael O’Brien, Michael Gleeson, Michael Cahill, Ger O’Grady and sub Aidan McCormack all made significant contributions.
Loughmore-Castleiney will view this as a freak result and hope for better things in the county championship. Veteran David Kennedy, Liam McGrath, Noel McGrath, and Tom King all tried manfully to stem the tide.
Sarsfields: P McCormack; S Maher, K O Gorman, S Lillis; D Kennedy, P Maher, M Cahill; M Gleeson (0-2), J Enright; L Corbett (0-1), J Corbett, P Bourke (6-3); M O Brien (0-4), D Maher (0-1), G O’Grady (0-1).
Subs: A McCormack (1-4) for Enright; R Ruth for J Corbett; JJ Bourke for P Bourke.
Loughmore-Castleiney: J Scully; T McGrath, D Bourke, W Eviston; A McGrath (0-1), E Connolly, T King; N McGrath (2-1), L Treacy(0-1); E Sweeney (0-1), C McGrath, J McGrath; L McGrath (0-6), D Kennedy (0-2), C Hennessy (0-1).
Subs: J Ryan for Sweeney; T Long for Bourke; L Egan for Hennessy.
Ref: M Ryan, Moyne-Templetuohy
Meanwhile in the county SHC, holders Drom-Inch bounced back from their heavy defeat in the Mid division semi-final a week previously to edge out a very determined Moneygall by 1-14 to 2-7 at Borrisoleigh.
The sides were level at 1-5 each at half time. Eoin Ryan got an early goal for Moneygall while Paddy Kennedy responded in the 14th minute.
Drom looked the stronger in the second half, going thee points clear, but Ger Kirwan goaled for Moneygall to level in the 42nd minute. Two Damian Young saves in the Drom goal were crucial as the champions brought on county man James Woodlock for the last quarter, an indication of their concern. Woodlock obliged with a 57th minute point with led to a late flourish by them for a four points win.
Brendan Maher was the key figure for Borrisoleigh as they outpointed Kilruane MacDonagh 0-21 to 0-16 at Toomevara. Kilruane kept in touch with their fancied rivals all the way, but county midfielder Maher’s point-scoring was the difference between the sides.
Kildangan were comfortable 2-12 to 0-13 winners over Killenaule in their clash at Templetuohy.