Super blues: Thurles Sarsfields captain David Bourke will hope to inspire his side to All-Ireland final glory on Sunday in Raheenagh, County Limerick. Photo: Eamonn McGee
Thurles Sarsfields will carry the blue and gold flag of Tipperary into the All-Ireland Junior B Hurling Championship final against Kilnadeema-Leitrim on Sunday, February 18th (throw-in 2pm) - the game will take place at Páirc Íde Naofa in Raheenagh, County Limerick (the home of Killeedy GAA club).
In the All-Ireland semi-finals Thurles Sarsfields put Kilkenny and Leinster champions John Lockes to the sword in emphatic style when winning 3-14 to 0-10 while in their respective last four clash Galway champions Kilnadeema-Leitrim beat Killavullen (0-14 to 0-11).
Killavullen (Cork) proved too strong for Sarsfields in the recent provincial final (0-10 to 0-5), but that contest was played in atrocious conditions. And, given the quality of Thurles’ most recent display the Tipperary champions should confidently face into the decider.
Sarsfields dominated the match against John Lockes from start to finish and may well have won by more than thirteen points given the prevailing pattern of this contest. Indeed, Thurles Sarsfields were really impressive in this semi-final. John Lillis and Stevie Fewer dominated at full-back and centre-back respectively while up front Conor Moloney and Mathew Kelly shone out. The hard-running Pa Crone, however, was the outstanding candidate for the man of the match award at midfield - Crone’s general work rate, driving runs and ability to take a score was a telling factor.
In the Munster semi-final Thurles Sarsfields dispatched a tame Tubber challenge (2-10 to 0-3).
This junior B hurling tournament has been hosted by the Killeedy GAA club in Limerick for some years now and twelve months ago Upperchurch-Drombane lost both the Munster decider and the All-Ireland final to Whitechurch (Cork).
The Thurles Sarsfields panel of players reads as follows: Matt O'Brien, Gary Healy, John Lillis, Peter Maher, Glen Kerrigan, Stevie Fewer, Conor Cassidy, Pa Crone, Tom Tierney, David Bourke, Jim Corbett, Matthew Kelly, Mark Purcell, Conor Maloney, Seamie Doyle, Christopher Carew, TJ Dwyer, Jack O'Dwyer, Matthew Fogarty, Anthony Guinan, Patrick Bowden, Jack O'Dwyer, Aidan Butler, Donal O'Gorman, Sean Barrett, Daniel Maloney, Eddie McCormack, Liam Power, Eoin Long, Tony O'Brien, John Cullen, Brian Callanan, Sean Dwan, David Kenehan, Michael Murphy & John Callanan.
The Thurles Sarsfields junior B hurling management team: Pat Ryan (manager) and selectors Jamie Barrett, Martin Fitzpatrick and Liam Duggan.
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