Instead, St Mullin’s have emerged as favourites for ultimate glory as they saw off Naomh Eoin in a classic encounter by 2-17 to 0-19.
Rangers had Hugh Paddy O’Byrne to thank as the corner forward, who was used in defence by Carlow manager John Meyler in the Allianz Hurling League campaign, scored 1-8 and until the 51st minute was his side’s only player to raise a flag of any description.
Another Carlow inter-county player, Craig Doyle, nailed six points for Erin’s Own who were in the game until Derek Byrne poked home from close range after O’Byrne had seen his 49th minute effort blocked when he looked odds on to add to his impressive total.
Teenager Marty Kavanagh, who scored the winning Carlow goal against Dublin in the Leinster U21HC, pulled the strings for St Mullin’s with a total of seven points from placed balls and play but his brother Jack came up with the crucial strike in the 36th minute when he swooped for his side’s second goal which proved critical.
John Michael Nolan scored nine points for Naomh Eoin over 60 minutes but they were never able to edge in front after trailing 1-9 to 0-9 at the interval.
Centre-forward Paddy Walsh scored the only goal of the half for St Mullin’s.
Last night, Ballinkillen could afford to shoot seven second-half wides and still emerge triumphant over Naomh Bríd by 0-16 to 1-9.
It was 0-8 to 1-5 at the interval with Jimmy Cahill finding the net with the last action of the half but Ballinkillen were the better side and fully deserved their win. The ball striking of David English proved decisive, with six points from placed balls for the winners.