U15 Football 2013-10-30 08:29:00

An impossibly busy week for Clyda Rovers began with an eight point defeat to a strong Granard Gaels side in the Rebel Og North football final on a wet miserable Tuesday night in Kildorrery. Despite the ultimate margin of defeat, this was a game that was delicately poised until the dying minutes as Clyda had battled back from a horrendous start to trail by just two points with 8 minutes remaining and with Colin Kelly bearing down on goal the omens looked good for Clyda. Unfortunately for the Clyda lads, however, the Granard Gaels keeper pulled off a fine save and cleared the ball up-field and there the ball remained for the rest of the game as Granard Gaels added a goal and three points within 6 minutes to claim the title.

The game began in helter-skelter fashion with both sides missing very early scoring opportunities. It was clear from the opening stages, however, that colossus Liam Barrett was emerging as a dominant figure at mid-field. The Clyda Rovers backs were slow to settle as they struggled with the pace and movement of the Granard Gaels forward line and in the third minute Clyda conceded a penalty. Colin O’Brien’s effort came off the post but Luke Crowley was quickest to react and tucked the rebound away. From the kick-out Granard Gaels won possession and added a point through Padraig O’Shea before Gavin Dennehy kicked a fine reply for Clyda. This score didn’t stem the tide as Colin O’Brien went on a scoring burst for Granard Gaels scoring two points either side of a goal in the 10th minute to put his team ahead by eight points. Sean Kelly pulled off a great save for Clyda in the 15th minute with Daniel Fitzpatrick quick to clear. Gareth O’Hanlon won possession and was fouled but the quick free and one-two with Colin Kelly failed to work as the shot went wide of the post. With Eamon Doherty and Matthew McEntee working hard to break Barrett’s dominance at midfield, Clyda came more into the game and a good run by Colin Kelly resulted in a free which he converted himself. Matthew McEntee broke onto a ball at midfield and ran through before laying off to Ben O’Connor who kicked a nice point. Gareth O’Hanlon dropped deep to claim possession and ran the length of the field before shooting narrowly wide to the relief of the Granard Gaels keeper. Clyda created a number of both point and goal scoring opportunities at this stage of the game but a mixture of wayward shooting and good defending saw a number of chances go astray. Colin Kelly was denied by a good save from the Granard keeper in the 29th minute following a good run up the middle and Granard broke up the field for another Colin O’Brien point. From the kick-out Liam Barrett won the ball and kicked a good point from 35m out to leave the score 2-05 to 0-03 at the short whistle.

At the resumption Clyda were rocked to their heels as Liam Barrett stormed through before unleashing a shot to the Clyda net which put 11 points between the sides. The game looked over at this point but the Clyda Rovers team showed tremendous resilience to begin a fight-back. Clyda worked the ball up the right with good combination play before a shot which cannoned off the crossbar before being cleared. The reprieve was only temporary for Granard as Garrett O’Hanlon took off on a trademark run unleashing a shot which again struck the bar with Colin Kelly following up to side-foot to the net. Clyda’s tails were up and two points for Granard in the 7th and 10th minutes failed to stem the tide as Clyda came roaring back into the game. Colin Kelly and Ben O’Connor combined before O’Connor rattled the Granard net in the 8th minute. The Clyda defence were getting on top with Daniel Fitzpatrick, Martin O’Connor, Conor Pratt and Mark O’Sullivan prominent while Matthew McEntee was keeping Liam Barrett quiet at midfield. Sean Kelly pulled off another great save in the 15thminute to frustrate Granard Gaels. Colin Kelly scored a point in the 17th minute and shortly after linked up well with Garrett O’Hanlon who blasted to the roof of the net. In the 22nd minute up popped Dara Buckley for another Clyda point to leave just two between the teams. Then came the decisive moment of the match as a move involving Garrett O’Hanlon, Dara Buckley and Colin Kelly saw the latter one-on-one with the Granard Gaels keeper who made a great save to deny him. Again Granard Gaels broke up-field and quickly tagged on two points. As Clyda tired Granard seemed to take heart once more. Conor Pratt made a partial block at the expense of a 45 but the resultant free was quickly worked and the resultant shot came off Clyda hands to find the back of the net. Hesitancy in the Clyda defence saw Granard Gaels in for another point as the game came to a close with Granard Gaels winning by 4-10 to 3-05.

Clyda Rovers: Sean Kelly, Conor Pratt, Daniel Fitzpatrick, Dara Buckley, Martin O’Connor, Colin Kelly, Mark O’Sullivan, Matthew McEntee, Eamon Doherty, Ben O’Connor, Gavin Dennehy, Garrett O’Hanlon, Adam Walsh, William Cronin, Sean O’Shea, Dylan Flanagan, Sean O’Callaghan.

A disappointing week for the Clyda U15 team was completed when a tired and injury ravaged squad failed to overcome Ballyhooly in the Rebel Og North Cork hurling semi-final last Thursday. Following so soon after the football final on the Tuesday night Clyda were always facing an uphill task and this became even more difficult as three key players had to pull out through injury. Despite the absence of these players the Clyda team gave a huge effort on a night when the conditions were terrible. Ballyhooly had the benefit of the driving wind and rain in the first half and held a 1-08 to 0-1 lead by half-time. In the second half Clyda threw everything at their opponents in a bid to bring themselves back into the game but the worsening conditions and fatigue meant that Clyda had to concede the day to Ballyhooly by 1-10 to 1-03.

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