Liam Cleary converts late ’45 to win the North Tipperary U21A football championship title for Borrisokane

Brian McDonnell


Brian McDonnell


Liam Cleary converts late ’45 to win the North Tipperary U21A football championship title for Borrisokane

A delighted Borrisokane captain Dylan Power is pictured collecting the North Tipperary Under-21A Football Championship trophy at Ballingarry on Friday evening.

Man of the match Liam Cleary converted a ’45 four minutes into second half injury time to help propel Borrisokane to a narrow North Tipperary Under-21A Football Championship final win over Inane Rovers at Ballingarry on Friday night.

North Tipperary Under-21A
Football Championship Final
Borrisokane 0-11 Inane Rovers 1-7

Although the playing of this divisional decider was significantly delayed this season this final was worth waiting for in terms of the entertainment value it provided. These sides were evenly-matched for the most part, but Borrisokane centre-forward Liam Cleary appeared the most accomplished operator on the field of play.

Michael Heenan and Michael Kelly were also outstanding for a Borrisokane side which led by a single point (0-3 to 0-2) at the interval and by two (0-9 to 0-7) with a minute of normal time remaining when an Eoin Tynan goal presented Inane Rovers with the lead. And, in a dramatic finish to this tussle Liam Cleary managed to land a free and see a spot kick saved before the centre-forward booted over the resultant ’45 to win this final for Borrisokane in dramatic circumstances.

Inane Rovers started well and scooted into a 0-2 to no-score lead thanks to efforts from Fionn Ryan and Eoin Tynan. With twenty-one minutes played and two points adrift Borrisokane needed to muster a response and did so when closing out the half with three successive efforts - Liam Cleary converted two frees while Jack Mahoney scored an absolute beauty from the outside of his right boot to present Borrisokane with a 0-3 to 0-2 interval lead.

The sides traded efforts immediately after the break and there was still a point between them with twenty minutes to play (0-5 to 0-4) - following efforts from Liam Dooley, Liam Cleary (free) and Darragh Tynan (two frees) - when Aidan Booth’s curling left foot shot almost found the Borrisokane net in the 43rd minute; Booth also saw another stinging effort saved by ‘keeper Jason Quigley.


A composed Borrisokane attack culminated with a terrific Michael Heenan point in the 44th minute before Darragh Tynan and Liam Cleary traded frees. Then, with eight minutes to play, Dylan Hogan set up Darragh Tynan for a thundering right foot point from distance to close the gap, once more, to one (0-7 to 0-6).

Borrisokane created a goal-scoring opportunity of their own in the 53rd minute when, following a flowing move which featured Michael Heenan and Liam Cleary, a misfortunate Dylan Power steered wide from close range.

Placed balls were then exchanged, but when Oisín Larkin created an opening for Michael Heenan to boot Borrisokane into a two-point lead off his left (0-9 to 0-7) in the 57th minute Inane Rovers appeared doomed. That is until the 59th minute when Darragh Tynan conjured a goal-scoring opportunity for Colman Treacy; although Treacy’s shot skewed off target it landed in the arms of Eoin Tynan who finished from close range (1-7 to 0-9).

Four minutes elapsed before another Liam Cleary free tied up the game in the 63rd minute. Borrisokane then won the subsequent kick-out and carved open the Inane Rovers defence before Conor Gavin was fouled for a penalty. Liam Cleary opted to go for goal from the spot kick, but Inane Rovers ‘keeper Brian Parlon saved brilliantly at the expense of a ’45 which Liam Cleary booted over.


Borrisokane: Jason Quigley, Kevin Harding, Eddie O’Dwyer, Rowan Murphy, Jack Mahoney (0-1), Stephen Gavin, Oisín Larkin, Michael Heenan (0-2), Michael Kelly, Conor Gavin, Liam Cleary (0-7, 0-6 frees, 0-1 ‘45), Liam Dooley (0-1), Dáire Madden, Dylan Power, Jack Larkin. Subs: (33rd) Conor Ryan for Dáire Madden.

Inane Rovers: Brian Parlon, Bryan McCabe, Gavin Meagher, Jamie Ryan, Fionn Ryan (0-1), Thomas McCarthy, Jack Lee, Colman Treacy, Daniel Ryan, Aidan Booth, Vladislav Bodrov, Shane Fletcher, Eoin Tynan (1-1), Darragh Tynan (0-5, 0-4 frees), Sam Queally. Subs: (48th) Kevin Moore for Sam Queally, (48th) Dylan Hogan for Vladislav Bodrov.

Referee: Pat O’Mahony (Kiladangan).


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