Brave Kilkenny Fightback Narrowly Misses All Ireland Title

Sat 1st Sep Paul Fitzgerald

Brave Kilkenny Fightback Narrowly Misses All Ireland Title

Kilkenny lost out by Tipperary by 3-13 to 1-17 in the All Ireland Intermediate Final in Semple Stadium. Having trailed by 3-9 to 0-6 at the break Kilkenny put in an excellent second half but came up just short at the final whistle.

Kilkenny recovered from a disastrous first half to bring the result of this All Ireland Intermediate final the the wire in Semple Stadium before losing out by two points to Tipperary. While this was Kilkenny’s second successive final defeat it should be borne in mind that Tipperary, with home advantage, started with thirteen senior club players while Kilkenny picked from junior and intermediate clubs only.

The score board at the interval seemed to back up both of the these facts as Tipperary led by 3-9 to 0-6. But Kilkenny to their credit won the second half by 1-11 to 0-4, scoring 1-7 without reply and reducing the deficit to a single point with nine minutes left on the clock.

At this stage Kilkenny were awarded a 53rd minute penalty taken by Rory Hickey whose drive was saved by Tipperary goalkeeper James Logue. Logue also diverted a twenty metre Hickey free from the 20m line over the bar in the stoppage time. While these saves were impressive the Tipperary net minder was beaten when Kilkenny substitute Geoff Brennan’s long range delivery went all the way to the Tipperary net in the 42nd minute. This goal that gave Kilkenny real hope as they went close to a great comeback.

However Kilkenny had left themselves too much to do after a first half in which Tipp’s full-forward line of Kieran Morris, Mikey Heffernan and David Butler thrived on a regular supply of ball and all three had registered 1-2 each by half time.

Ironically Kilkenny had started well and led by 0-4 to 0-2 with nine minutes on the clock.But they didn’t score again for the next 13 minutes and in that time ,their opponents established the lead which was to win the game. Michael Heffernan registered Tipperary’s first goal in the ninth minute followed by David Butler nine minutes later by which stage wind-assisted Tipperary were in complete control. Their third followed in the 25th minute, finished by Kieran Morris.

Kilkennydid have a couple of chances in first half stoppage time but Ger Aylward saw his effort saved by Logue, and then the Tipp goalkeeper did well to keep out a Rory Hickey’s 20 metre free.

Scorers — Tipperary: M Heffernan 1-4, K Morris 1-3 (0-1f), D Butler 1-2, M Gleeson, P White, S Carey, P O’Dwyer 0-1 each. Kilkenny: R Hickey 0-8 (4f, 2 65s), G Brennan 1-0, K Kelly 0-3, N Walsh 0-2, B Kennedy, L Harney, J Lyng, JJ Farrell 0-1 each.

Tipperary: J Logue; C Coughlan, K O’Gorman, G Walsh; J Barry, E Connolly, R Sherlock; M Gleeson, P White; S Carey, D O’Brien, J Gallagher; K Morris, M Heffernan, D Butler. Subs: R Ruth for Butler (38m), E Sweeney for Gallagher (47m), C Dillon for O’Brien (56m), P O’Dwyer for White (56m).

Kilkenny: R O’Neill; M Phelan, A Walsh, J Corcoran; B Kennedy, B Beckett, L Harney; J Lyng, P Murphy; N Walsh, R Hickey, K Kelly; R Walsh, JJ Farrell, G Aylward. Subs: P Hartley for Murphy (19m), M Malone for R Walsh (28m), G Brennan for A Walsh (30+1), C Kenny for Farrell (60m).

Referee: J Owens (Wexford).

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