Bride Rovers Juvenile Club notes for the week.

November 8, 2018

U12’s are County Champions.


How oft this great team by long odds got defeated

But still their hearts were not dimmed in the fray

When hot grew that fight those hearts grew more eager

And that is why they are County Champions today’


These four lines are taken from ‘Bride Rovers Abu’, the song was written back in 1930 but the sentiment expressed in that verse was alive and well in the Erins Own Club Grounds at Caherlag on last Saturday afternoon when our Club’s under 12 hurlers were crowned Cork County champions for 2010. At the end of a great five-match campaign a great victory was achieved to cap off a fine season for these young hurlers. Ironically it was also our last game at u12 championship level (for two years at least) as a decision was taken at GAA congress in Newcastle earlier this year to abolish the u 12 grade as we have known it.


That’s for another day and congratulations to all the players, parents, mentors and supporters who were involved in this campaign. Having defeated Passage and Kilmichael on successive Saturdays the opposition in the County Final was provided by Diarmuid O Mathunas from Castletownkenneigh in the Carbery Division. On a beautiful autumn day with the sun beating down referee Ciaran Ryle from the Ballincollig club got the Final underway at two o clock. O Mathunas were first into the attack but our defence cleared. Against Kilmichael the previous Saturday we had got two early goals, which settled the team, but twas obvious that there would be no repeat as O Mathunas were well able to hurl in all areas of the pitch. They got the opening score, a point but after Shane O Flynns puck out was added to by Griffin O Sullivan, Shane O Connor levelled the scores with a lovely point which gave our lads great confidence.


With Adam and John well on top in defence we repelled several good attacks. Dylan Browne gave us the lead before Shane had his second point. Brian Roche, D.J. Cahill and Jack Connor in the half back line were coming under a lot of pressure but hurling well. With a perfectly manicured pitch the surface was ideal for ground hurling and on several occasions when Leon, Conleth, Griffin and Jesse were confronted by much bigger opponents they simply whipped on the sliotar to great effect. After fifteen minutes O Mathunas reduced the deficit to a single point 0 3 to 0 2. After a great passage of hurling involving Adam, Griffin and Leon, Conleth Ryan hit over a sweet point to put us two ahead.


Team Captain Jordan Service had a great shot saved by David Cronin, the O Mathunas net-minder. Jordan was not to be denied however and he scored a great goal -it turned out to be the crucial score of the game, in the twentieth minute, to give us a 1  4 to 0  2 lead. We were well on top at this stage but had three wides. O Mathunas were not finished and scored a fine point to leave us ahead at the short whistle by a margin of four points, 1  4 to  0  3. Considering our dominance of the game in the second quarter it didn’t look like a great lead. Luckily our defensive unit was magnificent. The pressure they came under in the first half however was nothing like the waves of attack in the second period.  From the restart the Carbery side were in the attack and had two points from frees to leave just two points between the sides.


Time and again they came in search of a levelling score but Adam O Sullivan led the defence in great style and D.J. Cahill rallied the half backs to deny O Mathunas what looked like certain scores. Their defence improved as well and our forwards could make little headway. Jesse O Keeffe struck a fine point from a free to put us three ahead, 1 5 to 0  5.  Griffin O Sullivan and Leon O Flynn at midfield came more into the game when we looked like being overwhelmed as O Mathunas surged forward.


The game was in the melting pot once more when they got their sixth point. They were now looking for a winning goal but Shane O Flynn in goal led by example. Eoin Roche came on as a sub and soon he struck a grand point. Jordan had a great effort saved and Dylan, Jesse and Shane were in hard luck for scores. With five minutes left we were holding on grimly to a three point lead.  O Mathunas brought the margin back to two once more as the huge Bride Rovers crowd were in full voice. Twice in tension filled closing minutes we were awarded frees and like Henry Shefflin or Eoin Kelly, Jesse stepped up to the mark and raised two white flags to put us 1 8 t o 0  7 ahead- a margin of safety.


O Mathunas never gave up but at last the final whistle went and Bride Rovers were County Champions. It was a magnificent sight after the game, luckily ‘Pitch Invasions’ haven’t been banned in Caherlag! Mick Lyons from Araglen presented the Trophy to Jordan amidst great scenes of jubilation. This was a great win for a great team. They are a great bunch of lads and proof positive that there is great a hurling tradition not alone in the parish but in Ulster too as Jordan, Jack and Conleth have proud Northern connections. There was a noisy and happy homecoming for the team as they travelled back through Bartlemy and Rathcormac en route to Pairc na Bride for victory celebrations.Thanks to Darren & Kerry Service for the wonderful spread they gave the boys at the Club room and to O Coileans for providing the refreshments.


Team and scorers; Shane O Flynn, Adam O Sullivan, John O Sullivan, Brian Roche, D.J. Cahill, Jack Connor, Griffin O Sullivan, Leon O Flynn, Dylan Browne 0  1, Shane O Connor 0  2, Conlaith Ryan 0  1, Jordan Service 1  0, Jesse O Keeffe 0  3. Sub Eoin Roche 0  1.


Other Panel members were Tadhg Sheehan, Mark Connelly, Jordan Mannix, Patrick O Flynn, Dean Browne and Ben Hogan.


Congratulations also to the management team of Pat Murphy ,Dominic Connor ,Anthony Cahill,Oliver O Connor and Micheal Collins (Twiggy) and a special mention for Martin O Sullivan and Mark Browne who have never missed a training session or match either.


On Friday night the boys were presented with hoodys shorts and socks and a big thank you to everyone that gave so generously to the players fund.A team photo will be taken in the next week and given to the players also.


On Monday the celebrations continued with the boys going to both Bartlemy and Rathcormac school with the cups and a big thank you to the Principals & staff in both schools for the wonderful reception given to the boys.