Munster champions Borris-Ileigh held to a draw by Toomevara
FBD Insurance Tipperary County SHC
Borris-Ileigh 0-21 Toomevara 1-18
By James Hayden at MacDonagh Park, Nenagh
A last gasp long range Joey McLoughney free secured a share of the spoils for Toomevara following an absorbing battle with reigning Tipperary champions, Borris-Ileigh in the opening round of the FBD Tipperary senior hurling championship at MacDonagh Park, Nenagh today.
Borris-Ileigh lined out with 14 of the starters which contested the All-Ireland Club final against Ballyhale Shamrocks this year with Ciaran Cowan replacing the injured Paddy Stapleton but were pushed all the way by an up and coming Toomevara side.
In what proved an evenly matched first half the stand out performance was from Borris-Ileigh’s Jerry Kelly with four points from play. Toomevara started brightly and were two points to the good after ten minutes, 0-4 to 0-2 with Conor O’Meara, Kevin McCarthy (free), David Young and Mark McCarthy all on target.
Borris-Ileigh edged their way back into contention though with points from James Devaney and Kevin Maher tying up proceedings midway through the half before a booming Willie Coffey point from the toes of the stand sideline ensured Eoin Brislane’s charges led by 0-7 to 0-6 at the water break.
The sides were tied on three further occasions in the half before successive frees from Kevin Maher and Brendan Maher edged Borris-Ileigh two clear as the interval approached, 0-12 to 0-10.
Toomevara were afforded the chance with the last puck of the half after Russell Quirke was fouled on route to goal, but Robert Delaney’s penalty was struck straight at James McCormack in the Borris-Ileigh goal and they trailed by 0-12 to 0-10 at the break.
Borris-Ileigh quickly opened up a four-point gap in the opening ten minutes of the second half before a 41st minute Mark McCarthy goal provided the ‘Greyhounds’ with a much needed boost and it wasn’t long before the seized the initiative with a 45th minute Kevin McCarthy effort to lead by 1-15 to 0-17 at the water break.
In what proved a frantic closing quarter Brendan Maher brought Borris-Ileigh upsides with a free and a 65’ before James Devaney almost netted with a rasping shot across the bows of Robert Delaney in the Toomevara goal, his effort blazing narrowly wide.
Brendan Maher was very much to the fore in the closing stages with a sublime 63rd minute effort from way out the field coupled with a well-taken Jerry Kelly point handing the men in maroon a slender advantage once more.
Toomevara weren’t going to die soft though and battled gamely for a late equalizer and that eventually came in the guise of an accurately struck 66th minute Joey McLoughney free to ensure a share of the spoils in what many saw as the glamour tie of the opening round of the race for the Dan Breen Cup.
Scorers for Borris-Ileigh: B. Maher 0-6 (5f, 1 65’); J. Kelly 0-5; Kevin Maher 0-4 (3f); Kieran Maher 0-2; Conor Kenny 0-1, James Devaney 0-1, Dan McCormack 0-1, Tommy Ryan 0-1.
Scorers for Toomevara: J. McLoughney 0-6 (all frees); M. McCarthy 1-2 (1 s/l); K. McCarthy 0-5 (0-4f); W. Coffey 0-1; Conor O’Meara 0-1; David Young 0-1; Jack Delaney 0-1; Kenny Ryan 0-1.
Toomevara: Robert Delaney, Liam Ryan, Andrew Ryan (C), Jake Ryan; Colm Canning, Joey McLoughney, Josh McCarthy; Jason Ryan, Robbie Quirke; Willie Coffey, Conor O’Meara, David Young; Russell Quirke, Mark McCarthy, Kevin McCarthy. Subs: Paul Ryan for Canning (30); Jack Delaney for O’Meara (36); Kenny Ryan for Young (39); Alan Ryan for M. McCarthy (58).
Borris-Ileigh: James McCormack, Liam Ryan, Sean McCormack, Seamus Burke; Ciaran Cowan, Brendan Maher (J Capt), Ray McCormack; Dan McCormack (J. Capt.), Tommy Ryan; Conor Kenny, Jerry Kelly, Kieran Maher; Kevin Maher, Niall Kenny, James Devaney. Subs: Matthew Stapleton for S. McCormack (57); Shane Kenny for N. Kenny (60+6).
Referee: Fergal Horgan.