This was a tremendous game of football, embellished by some fine individual displays and excellent score taking by both sides.
Little wonder Carbery team boss Gene O’Driscoll was delighted with the display: “It was old style football, end to end stuff with some great scores and some manly tackles as well. It was a game that ebbed and flowed. It could have gone either way but I am glad that we came out on top.’’
Carbery just about deserved to prevail but few in the attendance would not have complained if another 20 minutes was required at the end of time.
The divisional team played against a strong wind in the opening half when they laid the platform for victory.
They scored a brace of goals in that spell and must have been delighted to have reached the dressingrooms just two points in arrears.
Their first goal arrived in the second minute — a sublimely executed effort by one of their star performers, Ruairi Deane.
The Skibbereen team responded with a point from the influential Kevin Davis but then lost Conor McCarthy to a black card after just six minutes.
But O’Donovan Rossa were quickly boosted by a goal when Paudie Crowley capitalised on a breaking ball to fire past Carbery keeper Pat Prendergast.
The game ebbed and flowed throughout that opening half with O’Donovan Rossa securing some fine points from Davis, David Shannon, Thomas Hegarty, and Dylan Hourihane.
However, Carbery stayed in touch and were in for a second goal after 27 minutes when a great run by Colm O’Driscoll ended with Mark Sugrue finishing to the net to leave two points between them at the break (1-8 to 2-3).
On the resumption we had more fireworks when Skibb’s Dónal Óg Hodnett, a much more effective operator in the second half, was fouled inside the square but from the resultant penalty, Shannon fired over the crossbar.
Carbery were now aided by the very strong wind but were unable to take any real advantage from it. Brian O’Driscoll, Sugrue, and Deane posted some fine points but the town team were ahead by a point after 44 minutes after Hodnett, and Davis landed scores.
The introduction of sub Richard O’Sullivan in the 40th minute for Carbery was a masterstroke and he fired over some wonderful points.
His third point had his team two points to the good entering the closing sequences before Carbery netminder Prendergast made a fantastic save.
Kevin Davis pointed a free in the 60th minute to leave the minimum between the teams but it all ended with Sugrue notching the insurance point for Carbery.
R Deane 1-3, M Sugrue 1-3 (0-1f), R O’Sullivan 0-3, C O’Driscoll, B O’Driscoll, K O’Driscoll, C Cullinane 0-1 each.
K Davis 0-8 (0-5f), P Crowley 1-0, D Óg Hodnett 0-2, D Shannon 0-2 (0-1pen), T Hegarty, D Hourihane 0-1 each.
P Prendergast (Bandon), P Murphy (Bandon), J O’Donovan (Bandon), N Hayes (Kilmacabea), S O’Leary (Bantry), B O’Driscoll (Tadgh McCarthaigh’s), C O’Mahony (Bandon), A O’Connor (St Colum’s), R Deane (Bantry), C O’Driscoll (Tadgh McCarthaigh’s), M Collins (Kilmacabea), K O’Driscoll (Tadgh McCathsigh’s), S O’Neill (Bantry), B Collins (Bandon), M Sugrue (Bandon).
R O’Sullivan (Kilmacabea), for B Collins (40), C Cullinane (Ballinascarthy) for O’Neill (57), S O’Neill for Brian O’Driscoll (62).
R Price, J O’Sullivan, R Hodnett, N McCarthy, M Collins, S O’Brien, D Hazel, S Carmody, D Óg Hodnett, C McCarthy, T Hegarty, P Crowley, K Davis, D Shannon, D Hourihane.
R McCarthy for C McCarthy (b/c 6th), P Nealon for Hourihane (h-t), A Tanner for N McCarthy (h-t), S Fitzgerald for Shannon (45), Shannon for Carmody (55).
C Lane (Banteer).