Ferns St Aidan's make history with first Wexford SHC title
Wexford SHC Final
Ferns St Aidan’s 1-20 St Martin’s 0-22
Jonny Dwyer was the hero for Ferns St Aidan’s as his beautifully cut sideline from all of 55 metres five minutes into extra-time secured the club’s first ever Wexford SHC title at Chadwicks Wexford Park on Sunday.
It was a dramatic end to a fiercely fought game of hurling but in the final reckoning it was a victory that Ferns deserved having made the running for most of the contest.
With their defence on top they dominated much of the first-half and forged into a 0-8 to 0-4 lead by the 21st minute.
But St. Martin’s then showed that even without the injured O’Connor brothers, Rory and Jack, in their starting XV they still had a cutting edge in attack.
With Jack Devereux to the fore, they scored six unanswered points in a row to move 0-10 to 0-8 ahead.
But timing is everything in matches of this magnitude, and Ferns struck back by landing the heaviest blow of the match in first-half injury-time.
Corey Byrne-Dunbar picked up the ball in the left corner and fed it to Dwyer who offloaded to the onrushing Patrick Breen who kicked the sliotar to the net for a vital goal just before the half-time whistle.
Ferns had slightly the better of the third quarter and led by 1-15 to 0-16 by the second-half water-break, and pushed out their advantage to four points thereafter.
But St Martin’s came with a late charge, shooting five of the next six points to level the game by the 60th minute.
Somehow, Ferns wrested back the momentum in extra-time as substitute Chris O’Connor fired over and then Dwyer landed that spectacular sideline cut to make the game safe and create history into the bargain as a late free for St Martin's proved too little too late.
Scorers for Ferns: I Byrne 0-5 (3f, 1 ‘65’), J Dwyer 0-4 (1 sideline), P Morris (1f), C Byrne Dunbar 0-3 each, P Breen 1-0, D Doyle 0-2, J Tonks, B Jordan, C O’Connor 0-1 each.
Scorers for St Martin’s: J Coleman 0-10 (7f, 2 ‘65’), K Firman 0-5, J Devereux 0-2, L Kavanagh, A Maddock, J Barrett, J Firman, M Coleman 0-1 each.
Ferns: J Lawlor; P Breen, N Murphy, D Byrne; C Roberts, E Murphy, J Tonks; R Scallan, T Dwyer; I Byrne, C Turner, J Dwyer; D Doyle, P Morris, C Byrne Dunbar. Subs: B Jordan for I Byrne (38), J Breen for Turner (41), C O’Connor for Doyle (57), R Nolan for Scallan (61).
St Martin’s: D Byrne; D O’Leary, J Barrett, P Dempsey; P O’Connor, C Firman, D Codd; M Maloney, J Firman; L Kavanagh, A Maddock, J Coleman; M Coleman, K Firman, J Devereux. Subs: D Codd for Devereux (42), W Devereux for Kavanagh (49), J O’Connor for M Coleman (52), D Waters for Maloney (54).
Referee: E Furlong (Rapparees).