Intermediate Hurling Championship (A )
Sun. Aug, 13th.2023

Blackrock 1 – 19 V Sarsfields 1 – 16 @ P.Ui Rinn

Report:  Roger Ryan

The old saying, “snatching victory from the jaws of death” certainly applied to our Intermediate Hurlers at Pairc Ui Rinn on Sunday afternoon as they really pulled this game out of the fire and defeated a shell-shocked Sarsfields who had been ahead for most of the game. We did lead briefly at the beginning when Ryan Sweeney opened the scoring with a free. Sars soon levelled up but Ryan Sweeney was again on target from two placed balls to stretch our lead to 2 points---0 – 3 to 0 – 1. Sars then surged ahead with a goal and Ryan Sweeney scored to level again at 0 – 4 to 1 – 1. Sars with the next 4 points stretched their lead to double scores 0-4 to 1 – 5. Sean Healy and John O'Sullivan cut that lead in half with a point each for us 0 – 6 to 1 – 5. Sars tacked on the next three points to forge ahead again , Eoin Smith grabbed one back for us and Sars closed out the first half with a point to lead at half time by 5 on a score of Rockies 0 – 7, Sars 1 – 9.

Ian O'Keeffe got us up and running with a point to open the second half and this was followed up by another point from Sean Healy. Sars added a point to increase their lead to 4 but John O'Sullivan reduced that to 3 with a point for us. Sars had the next two points to push ahead by 5 but Ryan Sweeney grabbed one for us to reduce their lead to 4. Sean Healy then converted a free to put us within 3 points of Sars but Sars replied with 2 of their own and forged ahead again by 5 points to leave it at 0 -13 to 1 – 15. Ian O'Keeffe grabbed a great ball and put over our next point and this was added to by John O'Sullivan with a great effort. This put us within 3 points again and following some fierce scrambling in the Sars goalmouth, Tom Grainger nabbed the goal we had been seeking all through the game. Excitement had reached fever pitch at this stage as the clock showed only 5 minutes remaining. But our boys weren't finished yet though as Sean Healy put over a free to give us the lead. Sars, from way over on the pavilion side equalised with time running out. Elliott Cantwell put us back in the lead with a point and on the 58th minute Fionn Coleman scored a point to put us ahead by 2. Tom Grainger then put over the last point after receiving a great pass from Ian O'Keeffe. This put us 3 points ahead and as there was only 1 minute added time. We ran out winners by 3 points, 1 – 19 to 1 – 16. Our backline came under severe pressure in the end but they responded well and came through with flying colours. As a team, our boys stood up well and responded heroically when the need was greatest and so came away with the spoils.

Scorers: Ryan Sweeney 0 – 05(05f), Tom Grainger 1 – 01, Sean Healy 0 – 04(02f), John O'Sullivan 0 – 04, Ian O'Keeffe 0 – 02, Eoin Smith 0 – 01, Elliott Cantwell 0 – 01, Fionn Coleman 0 – 01.

Team: Ross Browne, Joe Golden, Gary Norberg, Jamie Ryan, Elliott Cantwell, Conor O'Brien, Sean Healy, Eoin Smith, Ian O'Keeffe, John O'Sullivan, Tom Grainger, Fionn Coleman, Ryan Sweeney, David O'Farrell.

Referee: Kevin O'Sullivan, Valley Rovers.