Changing times in West Cork, a delighted Tom Wilson trumpeted at the final whistle.
The Newcestown manager, in the build-up to yesterday’s local derby, had described this first-round fixture as the paupers versus the aristocrats, and it was the underdogs, or should we say paupers, who led from gun to tape to secure a one-way ticket to round four of the championship.
Don’t bother with a second glance at the scoreline, you read it correctly first time around and let it be known that Newcestown were every bit deserving of their eight-point win.
The winners won the toss and elected to play with the elements in the opening half. And little time did Wilson’s charges waste in terrorising the Clon defence. They had carved a three-point advantage by the fifth minute. By the close of the first quarter the Newcestown lead stood at six points (0-7 to 0-1) and it was further stretched to eight returning to the dressing room at half-time (0-10 to 0-2).
Daniel Twomey assumed the role of tormentor-in-chief, kicking six points, all but one arriving from open play. The corner-forward’s left boot could simply do no wrong and a capable supporting cast was found in Carthach Keane, James Desmond and Luke Meade.
Fionn Keane and Mark Kelly put the shackles on the Clon midfield partnership of Tom Clancy and Graham Murray, while Michael McSweeney and Sean Crowley led a defensive effort that restricted their opponents to a single point from open play in half an hour of football.
Dave O’Regan (free) opened the Clonakilty account on eight minutes and a further 17 minutes would pass before Jack O’Mahony doubled their tally. Sean White fluffed an early goal chance for the favourites, while Newcestown ‘keeper Chris White produced a superb save to deny Timmy Anglin.
“There was a big wind in the first-half and it meant we could kick points from forty yards. We did, often,” said Wilson.
“The wind was much calmer in the second-half. They came at us strong for the opening ten minutes, we settled down, kicked a couple of points and their heads probably dropped in the final quarter.
“From our point of view, it was important we won to take the pressure off the club. The last thing we wanted was having to play the losers of Skibbereen and Bishopstown in the second round a week after the hurlers were out. When would we have had time to prepare?
“Clon have a huge history in senior football. They have been playing senior football probably the last 100 years, we don’t even exist that long. I am delighted with this win.”
Cork U21 Sean White was redeployed to midfield alongside Tom Clancy for the second period with Graham Murray moving to half-forward and it was the latter who kick-started their comeback bid with two points on the bounce. Clancy teed up Sean McEvoy thereafter and the gap stood at 0-10 to 0-5.
Mark Kelly steadied the Newcestown ship with their first white flag in 21 minutes, though they were far too content to shut up shop and run down the clock by whatever means possible. McEvoy and Timmy Anglin split the posts for Eoin Ryan’s side to cut the gap to 0-11 to 0-7 and they should have further chiseld away at the Newcestown lead but for poor decision-making from substitute David Lowney. The Cork minor attempted to go it alone with a goal on when full-forward Anglin was better positioned.
The chance went awry and Newcestown registered five points in the final eight minutes to claim local bragging rights – Tadhg Twomey (0-3), Carthach Keane and Desmond (free) completing the rout.
D Twomey (0-6, 0-5 frees); J Desmond (0-3 frees), T Twomey (0-3 each); C Keane (0-2); L Meade, M Kelly (0-1 each).
J O’Mahony, G Murray, S McEvoy (0-2 each); D O’Regan, T Anglin (0-1 each).
C White; M McSweeney, S Crowley, G Murphy; J Curran, C Twomey, J Desmond; F Keane, M Kelly; E Kelly, M O’Brien, L Meade; D Twomey, T Twomey, C Keane.
C Healy for C Keane (20 mins), S Ryan for Healy (50 mins), C Keane for M O’Brien (52 mins).
P O’Regan; C Sheehy, C Coughlan, C O’Donovan; D Murphy, M Sheehy, S White; T Clancy, G Murray; D Lyons, J O’Mahony, G Barry; D O’Regan, T Anglin, S McEvoy.
L Lyons for Sheehy (16 mins, inj), P O’Sullivan for Murphy (30 mins), D Lowney for O’Regan (39), M Scally for Sheehy (47 mins), I Falvey for Barry (58 mins).
J Dorgan (Nemo Rangers).