Tipperary SHC Round-Up: Drom & Inch stun Thurles Sarsfields and force a three-way play-off

Brian McDonnell

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Brian McDonnell

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bmcdonnell@tipperarystar.ie

Tipperary SHC Round-Up: Drom & Inch stun Thurles Sarsfields and force a three-way play-off

James Woodlock was outstanding for Drom & Inch against Thurles Sarsfields. Photo: Eamonn McGee

Thanks to a rousing display Drom & Inch stunned defending championship Thurles Sarsfields at Holycross on Sunday evening - Drom beat Sars with seven points to spare (2-22 to 1-18) and a three-way play-off must now take place between Drom & Inch, Thurles Sarsfields and Upperchurch-Drombane to determine which two sides progress from group three to the knock-out stage of the Tipperary Water County Senior Hurling Championship. And, the fixtures schedule for this series of play-off games have been released by the Competitions Control Committee.

On Tuesday, September 11th Drom & Inch will take on Upperchurch-Drombane in Templetuohy (8pm), Holycross then hosts the meeting of the winner of that clash with Thurles Sarsfields on Sunday, September 16th (5pm) while the loser of the opening game will collide with Thurles Sarsfields on Wednesday, September 19th in Templetuohy (8pm).

Following the weekend’s action Nenagh Éire Óg, Toomevara and Kiladangan progressed as group winners to the quarter-finals of the Tipperary Water County Senior Hurling Championship while Clonoulty-Rossmore, Kilruane MacDonagh’s and Loughmore-Castleiney finished second in their respective groups and also qualified for the knock-out stage of the competition. Killenaule finished bottom of their group, but have still qualified for the preliminary quarter-finals by virtue of winning the South Tipperary Senior Hurling Championship - the South champions will be drawn against a second placed team in due course.

Meanwhile the relegation play-offs will consist of Mullinahone, Carrick Swans, Killenaule and Portroe with two sides facing the drop to Roinn II.

GROUP ONE

On Saturday in Templemore Nenagh Éire Óg won their third successive game in group one when beating Mullinahone with ten points to spare (2-22 to 1-15). In the second round Éire Óg earned a reasonably fortunate two-point win over Clonoulty-Rossmore (1-20 to 1-18) while Nenagh Éire Óg proved too strong for Roscrea (2-24 to 0-11) first day out.

Meanwhile on Sunday at Dolla Clonoulty-Rossmore cruised through their contest with Roscrea (1-22 to 2-8). Roscrea proved too strong for Mullinahone in round two (3-18 to 0-19) and Clonoulty-Rossmore registered a solid win over Mullinahone (1-14 to 0-11) in the opening round.

So, Nenagh Éire Óg topped group one, Clonoulty-Rossmore finished second, Roscrea third and Mullinahone face the relegation play-offs.

Results
Mullinahone 0-11 Clonoulty 1-14
Nenagh Éire Óg 2-24 Roscrea 0-11
Roscrea 3-18 Mullinahone 0-19
Nenagh Éire Óg 1-20 Clonoulty-Rossmore 1-18
Nenagh Éire Óg 2-22 Mullinahone 1-15
Clonoulty-Rossmore 1-22 Roscrea 2-8

GROUP TWO

Toomevara walloped a fancied Killenaule team at Templemore on Saturday evening (4-15 to 1-14) to register their third victory and duly wrap up top spot in group two. As a result the Kilruane MacDonagh’s required a four-point win over Éire Óg Annacarty on Sunday in Dolla to finish second in the group and progress to the knock-out stage of the championship on scoring difference. And, Liam O’Shea’s men did the needful with something to spare when winning by six points (1-19 to 0-16).

In round two Killenaule roared to an impressive five-point win over the Kilruane (2-24 to 3-16) while Toomevara edged a tight contest with Éire Óg Annacarty (2-14 to 0-18). Killenaule lost to Éire Óg Annacarty (1-11 to 0-16) in the opening round while Toome beat Kilruane (1-9 to 0-10).

The Greyhounds top the group on six points while Kilruane, Éire Óg Annacarty and Killenaule all finished with two points - Kilruane (-1), however, registered the healthiest scoring difference of that trio; Éire Óg Annacarty (-6) and Killenaule (-7). As a result Killenaule will face the relegation play-offs even though they also qualify for the preliminary quarter-finals of the county championship by virtue of winning the South Tipperary Senior Hurling Championship. Kilruane MacDonagh’s are also through to the final of the Hibernian Inn North Tipperary Senior Hurling Championship (Liam O’Shea’s men await the winner of the semi-final replay between Kiladangan and Nenagh Éire Óg on September 8th).

Results
Éire Óg Annacarty 0-16 Killenaule 1-11
Kilruane 0-10 Toomevara 1-9
Killenaule 2-24 Kilruane MacDonagh’s 3-16
Toomevara 2-14 Éire Óg Annacarty 0-18
Toomevara 4-15 Killenaule 1-14
Kilruane MacDonagh’s 1-19 Éire Óg Annacarty 0-16

GROUP THREE

Entering the final group game at Holycross on Sunday evening Drom & Inch knew that a win over Thurles Sarsfields would force a three-way play-off between themselves, Upperchurch-Drombane and Thurles Sarsfields. And, thanks to a rousing display Drom earned a seven-point win over the defending champions (2-22 to 1-18). Last weekend Upperchurch-Drombane enjoyed a six-point win over Carrick Swans (1-23 to 2-14).

Thurles Sarsfields, who are chasing their fifth successive Dan Breen Cup, served notice of their extraordinary ability at The Ragg in round two when they scored twelve points without reply to beat Upperchurch-Drombane (1-24 to 1-15). Upperchurch-Drombane got off to a terrific start in their campaign when beating Drom & Inch (0-20 to 1-13) in the opening round while Thurles Sarsfields were presented with a walkover by Carrick Swans. In round two Drom & Inch beat Carrick Swans at their ease (2-24 to 0-16).

Thurles Sarsfields, Upperchurch-Drombane and Drom & Inch completed the group phase of the competition on four points, but since Carrick Swans gave a walkover in the opening round scoring difference could not be considered in the event of three sides finishing on equal points.

Results
Drom & Inch 1-13 Upperchurch 0-20
Thurles Sarsfields w/o Carrick Swans scr
Thurles Sarsfields 1-24 Upperchurch-Drombane 1-15
Carrick Swans 0-16 Drom & Inch 2-24
Carrick Swans 2-14 Upperchurch-Drombane 1-23
Drom & Inch 2-22 Thurles Sarsfields 1-18

GROUP FOUR

On Saturday Borris-Ileigh’s season came to a conclusion when Johnny Kelly’s men drew with Kiladangan at MacDonagh Park in Nenagh (2-18 apiece). As expected Loughmore-Castleiney saw off the challenge of Portroe in Dolla (1-24 to 2-11) meaning that Kiladangan won the group on five points, Loughmore-Castleiney finished second on four, Borris-Ileigh were third on three and Portroe finished bottom on zero. Please note that Loughmore-Castleiney are also through to the Mid Tipperary Senior Hurling Championship final against Thurles Sarsfields on Sunday, September 9th.

Loughmore-Castleiney won their second round contest with Borris-Ileigh by eleven points (2-22 to 0-17) while Kiladangan got the better of Portroe (1-22 to 1-18). Borris-Ileigh beat Portroe (2-10 to 0-12) in the opening round while Loughmore-Castleiney lost a thriller against Kiladangan (1-11 to 0-15).

Results
Portroe 0-12 Borris-Ileigh 2-10
Loughmore-Castleiney 1-11 Kiladangan 0-15
Kiladangan 1-22 Portroe 1-18
Loughmore-Castleiney 2-22 Borris-Ileigh 0-17
Borris-Ileigh 2-18 Kiladangan 2-18.
Loughmore-Castleiney 1-24 Portroe 2-11

COMPETITION FORMAT

The format for the county senior hurling championship is as follows: sixteen teams will compete in Roinn I for the Dan Breen Cup. There are four seeded groups - three rounds of games will be played with the top two teams progressing to the knock-out stage of the competition.

There is a potential need for preliminary quarter-finals if a divisional champion has not progressed to the knock-out stage of the county championship via the round robin stage of the competition. If this eventuality materializes the divisional champion(s) in question will be drawn to play a group runner-up in order to determine who progresses to the quarter-finals alongside the aforementioned group winners and remaining runners-up.

The group winners will be seeded in the quarter-finals with repeat pairings avoided where possible (repeat pairings are also avoided where possible at the semi-final stage of the competition).

Relegation: The four bottom teams in their respective groups will battle it out to see which two teams are relegated to Roinn II (the Séamus Ó Riain Cup) in time for the 2019 season.

The preliminary quarter-finals were originally scheduled to take place on Wednesday, September 26th with the quarter-finals on Sunday, October 7th, semi-finals on Sunday, October 14th and the county final on Sunday, October 28th.

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