Tony Flanagan stars in Mid junior B final

Mid Tipperary Junior B Football Final Moycarkey-Borris 1-10 Moyne-Templetuohy 1-5

Mid Tipperary Junior B Football Final

Moycarkey-Borris 1-10 Moyne-Templetuohy 1-5

An excellent display by powerful centre forward Tony Flanagan proved crucial as Moycarkey Borris claimed the Mid Tipperary Junior B Football crown with victory over Moyne Templetuohy on Sunday afternoon last in a damp and dreary Ragg.

The game changed on its head in the final moments of the first half as Moyne were reduced to 14 men when Niall Russell saw red after an off the ball brawl.

Two minutes later on the stroke of the interval Moycarkey penetrated the opposing defence when Pat Ralph took a free from the left wing and delivered into the full forward position. Tony Flanagan was out in front of his marker to gather and he burst away from the impending challenge before firing low with a superbly executed right footed drive to the back of the net, which slithered under the keeper’s body as he emerged from his line.

There was fantastic character displayed from Moyne as they took to the field for the second period and they drew to within two points at the mid way stage of the half when full forward John Sweeney found the net.

A marauding run from deep by John Hassett saw him attempt to link up with Sweeney, but when the full forward’s return pass on a one-two fell behind his team mate it looked like the move had broke down. Sweeney had other ideas and surged to pick up the break and from here he skipped around a challenge before expertly dispatching to the top corner of the net with the instep of his right boot.

This victory will delight the Moycarkey players and staff as it will drive home the massive football improvements made by the club in recent years and many of these young players will no doubt be knocking on the door of the senior set up next year as well as contending for county honours in this competition. Moyne will be disappointed and would have expected to be much closer to the mark come the final whistle but there were also performances here that will put some players, young and returning from abroad, into contention for the clubs senior set up for next year’s campaign.

The game started at a casual pace and other than a point in the opening seconds from Aidan Maher there was little action in the first eight minutes of play.

Michael Roche who popped up with a number of crucial points all afternoon scored his first with a left footed effort from close range before Moyne finally got off the mark 12 minutes in through a free from Declan Kelly. Moycarkey responded to this score well with two scores in a minute as Pat Ralph kicked a beautiful right footed effort and Tony Flanagan pointed after winning the resulting kick out. Both sides kicked a number of wides from this juncture until all the action kicked off with two minutes remaining in the half. Flanagan’s goal pushed Moycarkey into a 1-4 to 0-2 half time advantage.

Moycarkey looked like they were going to pull away in the opening minutes of the second period with points from their two most impressive attackers Michael Roche and Tony Flanagan but Moyne sparked into life for a short period.

Two beautiful left footed efforts from Declan Kelly sparked a wave of Moyne attacks and when Sweeney found the top corner of the net they were right back in the match. However during this period of dominance they also managed four wides along with a close range free that dropped into the keeper’s hands.

In the final moments Moycarkey recaptured the initiative and powered forward with Michael Roche scoring two from dead balls, one with both right and left foot, and the very impressive Flanagan fired a high and accurate score to leave Moycarkey five point victors.

Moycarkey Borris: E. Clohessey; P. O Brien, K. Shortall, G. Fallon; J. Kelly, C. McCullagh, G. Maguire; J. Bergin, W. Dempsey; A. Maher (0-2), T. Flanagan (1-3), P. Ralph (0-1); N. Heffernan, P. Kinnane, M. Roche (0-4, 2F). Subs: J. Fanning for W. Dempsey (44), D. Bergin for G. Maguire (54), T. Costello for T. Flanagan (58).

Moyne Templetuohy: L. Ryan; G. Maher, P. Costigan, M. Esmonde; J. Moloney, R. Larkin, M. Kelly; N. Russell, A. Kelly; D. Costigan, J. Hassett, P. Maher; D. Kelly (0-3, 1F), J. Sweeney (1-1), B. Fanning. Subs: G. Leahy for M. Kelly (h/t), B. Kelly (0-1) for P. Maher (35), P. Burke for A. Kelly (51).

Referee: A. Murray.