Glen Rovers comfortable winners in opening game of championship defence

Glen Rovers 0-23 Carbery 0-6: Holders Glen Rovers got off to a winning start in their Cork SHC opener at Coachford yesterday.

A relatively straightforward victory for Richie Kelleher’s side with a significant contribution of 11 points from Patrick Horgan, as they overcame a disappointing Carbery outfit.

The Glen were 0-9 to 0-1 to the good by half-time – holding Carbery to a solitary point from free-taker Jeremiah Ryan. Without reaching any great heights the Blackpool side looked likely winners from a long way out.

“Our form against divisions is very poor so we are very happy to get the win,” said Kelleher. “I wouldn’t be very happy with our performance but it is the first round and we won by 17 points and you’d take that every day of the week.

“There is more in us. We had 15 or 16 wides and no goal, but I would put that down to the Carbery defence. I though their number two (Finbarr Butler) was excellent. He moved to the forward line, he is a tasty hurler.

“Sars are up next. It will be a big challenge for us and that is good. We need to meet it head on. Today was like a challenge match in the end, and I think Carbery will agree with that.”

The Glen made four enforced changes from the victorious county final team – injured county star Stephen McDonnell one of those to lose out.

“Stephen is in good form,” continued Kelleher. “He is positive. He has about another six weeks to go. The sling is off and he is training.”

Jerry Ryan from the Carbery backroom team said their job can be frustrating, as a number of players do not commit to the division.

“The desire isn’t there from a lot of fellas. There were eight guys started their first senior championship game today, and that was against the senior county champions. And I would say some of the subs probably added to that.

“It is disappointing we were missing a number of players that didn’t either make themselves available or weren’t available for today. But the guys that were there gave an honest performance.”

Defensively Carbery started out well but as time wore on they were stretched. The aforementioned Butler and Philip Crowley did as much as they could, while goalkeeper Vincent Healy kept a clean sheet. Sadly, they were not as structured up front.

Centre-forward John Sheehan claimed a couple of points in the second-half but in reality, they were just doing their best to try and hold on.

Glen Rovers, meanwhile, were at a different level. Their back line was never really troubled with Carbery only scoring four times from play. Horgan ‘s precision was notable from both placed balls and open play. Around him all five forwards got on the scoresheet.

David Cunningham, Liam Coughlan and Brian Phelan each picking off a pair of points while second-half substitute Conor Dorris hit three points at right corner forward.

So, the Glen are set for a 2A tie with Sarsfields in a repeat of the 2015 county final, while Carbery have a 2B clash against Ballymartle.

Scorers for Glen Rovers:

P Horgan (0-11, three frees, two 65s), C Dorris (0-3), B Phelan, L Coughlan and D Cunningham (0-2 each), D Dooling, P Virgo and Busteed (0-1 each).

Scorers for Carbery:

J Ryan (one free, one 65m) and J Sheehan (0-2 each), F Butler and S O’Shea (0-1 each).

GLEN ROVERS:

C Hickey; C Healy, G Moylan, D Dooling; A O’Donovan, B Moylan, G Callanan; D Cronin, D Noonan; L Coughlan, P Horgan, D Cunningham; P Virgo, B Phelan, D Busteed.

Subs:

C Dorris for D Busteed (42).

CARBERY:

V Healy (Dohenys); F Butler (Argideen Rangers), P Crowley (Bandon), E O’Brien (Ballinascarthy); P Crowley (Diamuid O Mathuna), R Cashman (Kilbrittain), D O’Mahony (St Colums); J Ryan (Ballinascarthy), C Hickey (Kilbrittain); K Cullinane (Ballinascarthy), J Sheehan (Argideen Rangers), A Murphy (Bandon); A Hayes (St James), C McCarthy (St Oliver Plunketts), K O’Donovan (St Oliver Plunketts).

Subs:

D Desmond (Kilbrittain) for C Hickey, S O’Shea (St Colums) for A Murphy (both half-time), R O’Flynn (Ballinascarthy) for C McCarthy (45), J O’Sullivan (St James) for K Cullinane (50), D O’Donovan (Bantry Blues) for A Hayes (59).

Referee:

Joe Larkin (Ballinora).



Breaking Stories

Late Darren Casey goal secures win for Charleville

Legendary GAA commentator Weeshie Fogarty dies aged 77

'We still have work to do to get to All Blacks' level' – Luke McGrath

Francesco Molinari wins European Tour’s Race to Dubai

Breaking Stories

Wishlist: Colour Christmas gifts for the home

Live by the book or create your own wonderful outlook

Interiors are brought back to book

Significant winter auctions of Irish art are under way

More From The Irish Examiner