Castleisland Desmonds Men Make Club History in Brosna on Sunday

Murphy agus a Cháirde: The Castleisland Desmonds panel and kitman Gerdie Murphy celebrating with the Eamon O’Donoghue Memorial Cup after their 2020 North Kerry Football Championship final win over Ballydonoghue at Páirc Na Féile in Brosna on Sunday. ©Photograph: John Reidy

Desmonds 1-14 Ballydonoghue 1-7

Castleisland Desmonds made history on Sunday in the deferred North Kerry Championship final for 2020. They beat Ballydonoghue by seven points to snatch the ‘double’ for 2020 – the North Kerry League and championship titles.

By Eilish O’Leary

This has never been done before by the club and as Captain Maurice Hickey said as he accepted the Eamon O’Donoghue Cup – Desmonds are back!

The first half of the game was a close contest; with both sides marking closely and missed opportunities for both teams.

Desmonds’ Thomas Hickey was on target twice in the first quarter with Seán Lynch and Tomas Lynch also putting their names on the score sheet.

Ballydonoghue managed two points in the first 14 minutes of the game but just before referee, Peter Curtin, blew for the first water break, Ballydonoghue’s Paul Kennelly shot the ball into the back of the Desmonds net.

The scoreline read Desmonds 0-4 Ballydonoghue 1-2. When play resumed a determined Desmonds side levelled the game after an excellent Luka Brosnan point, assisted by Cian W. O’Connor. Maurice Hickey scored a point to put the 2017 champions ahead by one.

Jack Behan scored a point for Ballydonoghue and before half time Desmonds Cian W. O’Connor scored another point.

The half time score was Desmonds 0-7 Ballydonoghue 1-3

Desmonds patience and persistence came to the fore in the next quarter of the game when they scored 1-3 to Ballydonoghue’s 0-2. Pat Fitzgerald was introduced in place of Micheal Walsh. Cian W. O’Connor scored two points, one from a free; after a foul on Tomas Lynch and another point came from Thomas Hickey. Adam O’Donoghue scored the goal which came after assistance and an excellent passage of play by Maurice Hickey and Tomás Lynch.

Jack Behan and Jack Kennelly were the scorers for Ballydonoghue. At the second half water break it was Desmonds 1-10 Ballydononghue 1-05.

As the final fifteen minutes loomed, Desmonds continued to gain momentum and seemed very determined to finish even more strongly. Pat Fitzgerald was replaced by Dominic Finnegan and Sean Lynch was replaced by Patrick Hickey.

Cian W O’Connor stepped up to the mark, once again, to point a free kick and Thomas Hickey scored his fourth point of the match.

Dominic Finnegan got his name on the score sheet with a point and it was the ‘two Jack’s’; Jack Behan and Jack Kennelly who scored a point each for Ballydonoghue.

Two minutes into extra time saw ‘man of the match’ Adam Donoghue fisting the final point of the game after a solo run from the half back line.

The final whistle blew to a rapturous cheer from the large Castleisland crowd in attendance.

Castleisland Desmonds: Stephen Bartlett, Conor O’Shea, Brian Leonard, Gearóid Leonard, Luka Brosnan (0-1), Denis O’Connor, Luke Lyons, Adam Donoghue (-01), Maurice Hickey (0-1), Adam O’Donoghue (1-0), Tomás Lynch (0-1), Micheál Walsh, Thomas Hickey (0-4), Cian W O’Connor (0-4), Seán Lynch (0-1) Substitutes: Pat Fitzgerald, Dominic Finnegan (0-1), Patrick Hickey.

This win capped off a brilliant sporting weekend for the Desmonds Club’s senior teams, after the Ladies secured their place in the Munster Intermediate final. They beat Tipperary’s Galtee Rovers 3-2 to 1- 1 in Milltown on Saturday. Their final is fixed for two weeks time in a Cork venue to be decided.

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