Charleville’s champion ‘culture’ survives epic challenge from 14-man Kanturk

Charleville men progress to Senior A final meeting with Fr O’Neill’s or Newcestown.
Charleville’s champion ‘culture’ survives epic challenge from 14-man Kanturk

Jack O'Callaghan of Charleville in action against Aidan Walsh, Kanturk in The Co-Op Superstores Cork Hurling Championship at Mallow on Saturday.

Cork SAHC semi-final: Charleville 2-26 Kanturk 3-17  

Where does one start with this thrilling Co-Op Superstores Cork SAHC semi-final in Mallow on Saturday, where championship contenders Charleville were put to the pin of their collar by 14-man Kanturk after Lorcán McLoughlin received a straight red card just before half-time for a pull on Darragh Fitzgibbon.

They survived this epic battle. Claude Gough’s men saw out a contest where momentum swung from side to side by scoring two late goals courtesy of Andrew Cagney and there was a 11-point haul from Cork attacker Fitzgibbon. As well, impact subs played a vital role in bagging seven points between them.

“Today was about getting a result, we were up against a formidable opponents. The year that is in it, you take whatever you can get. Today epitomised that, put your shoulder to the wheel and get over the line,” said Gough.

“We have a fantastic squad, hurling is all about a panel. There is a nice sense of culture in the club at the moment, everyone is buying into it. We are back to the drawing board again on Tuesday night.

“Testament to the lads who came in as well, they know they will get one chance. There is no-one owning a jersey on this team, you earn it during the week.

“There are some fantastic characters and resilience in this bunch of guys. It has been questioned quite a lot, but these guys over the last six or seven years have done it and today was testament to them.

“Andrew Cagney is a cool, calm customer. He has trained so hard all year, all these guys are getting what they put in. Goals in championship can be hard come by, especially against Kanturk.”

Charleville trailed by one point at the break, 1-9 to 0-11. Their superiority came to the fore in the third quarter with a variety of players pointing including sub O’Brien, Fitzgibbon, Daniel O’Flynn and Jack O’Callaghan to build up a five-point lead.

Kanturk’s Alan Walsh was then dragged down for a penalty which Anthony Nash buried. Game on once more.

Charleville pulled away again.

We had a one-point match when sub Ian Walsh and Paul Walsh raised white flags seven minutes from time.

Sub Tim Hawe had the sliotar in the net only for Cathal McAllister to award a free out. When Ian Walsh then netted for Kanturk, the drama continued, 3-15 to 0-25.

Their joy was short-lived as Cagney eased the pressure for Charleville, his green flag giving them breathing space.

In injury time now, Charleville who showed no signs of rust from their four-week lay-off, closed with a second goal from Cagney to seal their passage to the final and a meeting with either Fr O’Neill’s or Newcestown.

Kanturk took the game to Charleville from the start moving five points to one up. By the first water break, Charleville had hit six unanswered points. They were 0-10 to 0-8 ahead when Aidan Walsh bagged Kanturk’s opening goal in the 26th minute.

Aidan Walsh didn’t see out the game due to injury and they suffered another blow when the injured Ryan Walsh departed early in the second-half.

Scorers for Charleville: D Fitzgibbon (0-11, 0-9 frees), A Cagney (2-0), J Doyle and J O’Brien (0-4 each), T Hawe (0-2), M Kavanagh, G Kelleher, F Cagney, D O’Flynn and J O’Callaghan (0-1 each).

Scorers for Kanturk: I Walsh, Aidan Walsh and A Nash (1-0 pen, 0-1 free) (1-1 each), B O’Sullivan (0-4 frees), L McLoughlin (0-3, 0-2 frees, 0-1 65), R Walsh (0-2), Alan Walsh, L O’Neill, J Fitzpatrick, P Walsh and C Clernon (0-1 each).

CHARLEVILLE: C Collins; D Butler, J Meade, M O’Flynn; A Dennehy, J Buckley, F Cagney; D O’Flynn, J O’Callaghan; D Fitzgibbon, G Kelleher, J Doyle; D Casey, C Buckley, A Cagney.

Subs: J O’Brien for C Buckley (25), J O’Brien for D Butler (half-time), M Kavanagh for D O’Flynn (50), T Hawe for J Doyle (55).

KANTURK: A Nash; J McLoughlin, L Cashman, A Sheehy; J Browne, D Browne, P Walsh; L McLoughlin, B O’Sullivan; J Fitzpatrick, R Walsh, L O’Neill; L O’Keeffe, Aidan Walsh, Alan Walsh.

Subs: I Walsh for R Walsh (35 inj), C Clernon for Aidan Walsh (53).

Referee: Cathal McAllister (Aghada).

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