Cratloe’s hopes of reaching the semi-finals of the AIB Munster Club SFC Quarter-Final ended in an extra-time defeat to Cork champions Castlehaven at Páirc Uí Chaoimh, writes Dylan O’Connell.
The wider surroundings over the change of venue from Castlehaven to the home of Cork GAA played to both teams strengths as it allowed Cratloe to express themselves in possession and they went agonisingly close to a famous result on Leeside.
The Haven – two weeks removed from their victory over Nemo Rangers in the Cork Premier SFC final – almost took the lead inside a minute through Mark Collins. He missed the target and Cratloe responded by playing Cathal O’Hanlon into space.
He made no mistake at the City End and the Clare champions’ early advantage was immediately cancelled out by a Brian Hurley free. The quick fire start then faded into a period of neat passing by Cratloe, which involved Conal O’Hanlon running between the lines in midfield. The forward was everywhere and a key part of his team’s second score, put over by Enda Boyce to make it 0-2 to 0-1.
Even though Cratloe saw the most of the ball in the first half, Castlehaven created the most chances as they missed the target on four different occasions and Whelton hit the post.
It was only a matter of time before the Cork championships equalised, and Jack Cahalane raised that white flag.
The Haven followed that up with Rory Maguire giving them the lead for the first time.
After Shane Neville missed a chance to tie the game up, a 45 was awarded to the Haven and Brian Hurley kicked the ball straight into the hands of Padraigh Chaplin. Things were opening up and Cratloe used this period of to get back to back scores through O’Hanlon and Rian Considine.
That made it 0-4 to 0-3 in favour of the Clare champions, and the first half fished with Jack Cahalane getting his second point of the game.
It was 0-4 apiece when the referee blew his whistle and Castlehaven used the restart to create space for Brian Hurley. He kicked the ball over the bar and Cratloe responded with Diarmuid Ryan raising a white flag.
Brian Hurley twice put his club into the lead in the minutes that followed and each time Cratloe equalised through O’Hanlon and Cathal McInerney.
The Clare champions did hit two wides during this spell and Catlehaven missed one opportunity. This put the quarter final on a knife edge during the closing minutes at Páirc Uí Chaoimh, and clear-cut chances were starting to dry up.
Cratloe did create two opportunities from placed balls and they narrowly missed the target on both occasions.
Brian Hurley’s fifth of the game that kickstarted a burst scores which saw Boyce and David Collins twice equalise for Cratloe and force extra-time.
Robbie Minihane, who replaced Andrew Whelton midway through the second half, hit the back of the net with a venomous strike to give Castlehaven a three point advantage once the game got back underway.
Two Cathal McInerney frees tore that cushion apart and just the bare minimum separate the two clubs once again.
Brian Hurley had the final say by getting his final scores of the Munster quarter final, and the three point cushion ensured the Cork champions move onto the next round.
Scorers for Castlehaven: Brian Hurley 0-7 (3f); Robbie Minihane 1-0, Jack Cahalane 0-2, Rory Maguire 0-1, Mark Collins 0-1, Jamie O’Driscoll 0-1.
Scorers for Cratloe: Cathal McInerney 0-4 (4f); Conal O’Hanlon 0-2 (1m), Enda Boyce 0-2, Conor Ryan 0-1, Diarmuid Ryan 0-1, David Collins 0-1.
Castlehaven: Darragh Cahalane; Johnny O’Regan, Rory Maguire, Ronan Walsh, Thomas O’Mahony, Damien Cahalane, Mark Collins, Conor Cahalane, Andrew Whelton, Jack O’Neill, Brian Hurley, Sean Browne, Cathal Maguire, Jack Cahalane, Michael Hurley.
Subs: Conor O’Driscoll for Browne (43); Robbie Minihane for Whelton (45), Ciaran O’Sullivan for O’Neill (47), Jamie O’Driscoll for O’Regan (57), Jamie O’Driscoll for Maguire (ET), David Whelton for Thomas O’Mahony (ET), Michael Maguire for Brian Hurley (ET).
Cratloe: Padraigh Chaplin; David Collins, Kevin Hartnett, Liam Markham, Enda Boyce, Mike Brennan, Rian McNamara, Diarmuid Ryan, Conor Ryan, Shane Neville, Sean Collins, Conal O’Hanlon, Rian Considine, Cathal McInerney, Padraic Collins.
Subs: Jack McInerney for Considine (52); Ogie Murphy for McNamara (52), Tommy Rooney for O’Hanlon (58), Conal O’Hanlon for Collins (ET).
Referee: Jonathan Hayes (Limerick)
Frees for: (4/2)
Spread of scorers: Six Players
Scores from play: Nine points
Top scorer: Brian Hurley 0-7 (3f)
Bookings: Three yellow cards and a black card for
Own kickouts won: (2/3)
Frees for: (4/3)
Spread of scorers: Six Players
Scores from play: Six scores
Top scorer: Cathal McInerney 0-4 (4f)
Bookings: Three yellow cards
Own kickouts won: (3/4)