The trophy is named after Shane Murphy, a former pupil of the Baile Bhúirne school, and last year they claimed it en route to winning the All-Ireland.
With many of that team having moved on, expectations weren’t as high on Saturday and they were underdogs facing Pobalscoil Inbhear Scéine. Manager Mickey Ned O’Sullivan, on the line against a team from his hometown of Kenmare, maintained he “couldn’t lose”, and his team seemed to take the same attitude.
“We didn’t expect to win,” he said, “but these lads don’t know how to lose. Winning the All-Ireland last year gave them great experience, we had some real leaders out there. They have a great self-belief, in four years they haven’t been beaten. On paper, the opposition would have had a stronger team but the lads played to their strengths. .”
Goals from Dean Mac Cárthaigh in the 27th minute and Damien Ó hUrdáil (33) were crucial, putting the Cork outfit 2-7 to 0-7 in front, with the lead never fewer than three points after that. Midfielders Dan and Micheál Ó Duinnín were excellent, kicking nine points between them, while goalkeeper Eoin Mac Cárthaigh made three excellent second-half saves.
Early on, the game had been close, the sides level four times before Kenmare looked to have opened some daylight through points from Seánie O’Shea and Patrick Clifford. But between the 25th and 34th minutes Coláiste Ghobatán outscored their opponents 2-3 to 0-1. Mac Cárthaigh netted, after good work from the Duinníns, and then, after he had scored the first point of the second-half, Ó hUrdáil did well to divert a Micheál Ó Duinnín delivery to the net.
Pat Spillane’s points brought Kenmare back into it and though they trailed 2-10 to 0-9 entering the last quarter with goal efforts repelled by Mac Cárthaigh, they didn’t throw in the towel. Four points on the bounce from Brian O’Sullivan, Stephen O’Sullivan, Seánie O’Shea and Spillane gave them hope, but Col Ghobnatán finished well. Dan Ó Duinnin scored three as they got four of the last five points, Dean Mac Cárthaigh with the other and they can dream of more All-Ireland glory.
Scorers for Coláiste Ghobnatán: D Ó Duinnín 0-6 (two) frees, D Mac Cárthaigh, D Ó hUrdáil 1-1 each, M Ó Duinnín 0-3 (one free), D Ó Ceallaigh 0-2, C Ó Murchú 0-1.
Scorers for Pobalscoil Inbhear Scéine: P Spillane 0-6, S O’Shea 0-3 (two frees), P Clifford, S O’Sullivan (one free) 0-2 each, B O’Sullivan 0-1 each.
COLÁISTE GHOBNATÁN: E Mac Cárthaigh (Naomh Abán); B de Róiste (Naomh Abán), A Ó Cuana (Cill na Martra), D Ó Ríordáin (Cill na Martra); P Ó Críodáin (Cill na Martra), T Ó Corcora (Cill na Martra), R de hÍde (Naomh Abán); D Ó Duinnín (Cill na Martra), M Ó Duinnín (Naomh Abán); D Ó hUrdáil (Cill na Martra), C Ó Murchú (Naomh Abán); S Ó Forréidh (Cill na Martra); C Ó Duinnín (Cill na Martra), D Ó Ceallaigh (Naomh Abán), D Mac Cárthaigh (Cill na Martra).
Sub: T Ó Riodáin (Naomh Abán) for Ó Forréidh (59).
POBALSCOIL INBHEAR SCÉINE: R O’Shea (Kenmare); D Cronin (Kenmare), D Ó Siochrú (Tuosist), A Morris (Tuosist); A Coakley (Kenmare), B O’Sullivan (Kenmare), G Fennessy (Kilgarvan); S O’Shea (Kenmare), D O’Shea (Kenmare); P Clifford (Templenoe), S O’Sullivan (Templenoe), J Doyle (Kenmare); K Price (Kenmare), P Spillane (Templenoe), C Granville (Templenoe).
Subs: J Crowley (Kenmare) for Doyle, M McCarthy for Granville (both half-time), S O’Shea (Kenmare) for Coakley (44).
Referee: J Butler (Tipperary).