Junior A Football vs Ballymun

Junior A Football vs Ballymun
Sun, 22nd February 2004
Result: 2-8 to 3-3

Sunday morning in the Bell car park and the times they are a changing as a famous Robert Zimmerman once sang. Instead of the players reeking of drink before a match it was the turn of the selectors to emerge bleary eyed into the cold. The occasion was the wedding on Saturday of former Kingscourt and Castleknock star Tommy McKeon. Well that’s definitely ended all talk of his reputed comeback. Enjoy the gardening Tommy.

Anyway the fresh as a daisy players made their way out to Ballymun with all talk consisting of ‘Will we make it back to the Bell to watch the Brigids match?’ Things were looking dodgy when we arrived out and saw an U-16 game taking place on the pitch which had only started. So a long wait was in order as Castleknock got their heads ready for the first match of the competitive season albeit without regulars of the calibre of the Reilly brothers, Conal McBrearty, Willie Fogarty and Patsy McGennill. Oh yeah, and the referee was misisng too. Donal ‘Lucifer’ Cunningham took the whistle for the first half with his Ballymun counterpart taking over for the second.

Anyway the match started in fierce windy conditions with Castleknock playing into the breeze. Former Dublin legend Gerry Hargan was centrefield for the Mun but Stephen Lynch fairly snuffed him out in the first half. Ballymun had a lot of possession but time and again the full back line of Raff, Lally and Sam were first out to the ball and broke up many attacks. Castleknock were forced to carry the ball or handpass up the pitch due to the breeze and their scores were hard got. Castleknock opened their account when Barry Farrelly knifed in from the right and fired over. Brendan Kiely added another before Ballymun went down and got a goal after a fine passing move. Castleknock rolled up their sleeves with Eoghan O’Callaghan and Mark Mohan making some great runs, they had a couple of chances but went wide. Then Ger Byrne was released on the right and he made no mistake to level the scores. Ballymun finished the half with two long-range points to go in with the lead at half-time.

Half time score: Ballymun 1-2 Castleknock 0-3

The second half was a different story with Castleknock stepping up the pace and using the breeze to their full advantage. Peter McKillen came more into the game and was making some great runs down the left flank. Alfie was on as well and harried and hassled his man on the other side, won the ball and released Barry Farrelly who played a one-two with Dominic and fired over from long range.

Another slick passing move resulted in Dominic being pulled down in the square and Barry Farrelly showed his captaincy skills by stepping up and slotting home the penalty. Castleknock were on a roll and Eoghan O’Callaghan scored a point off the left boot. I’ve never actually seen Eoghan kick with the left boot let alone score a point with it so a special day all round.

After their great start Castleknock slowed up a bit and Ballymun worked their way up the pitch before winning a dubious penalty for themselves. The taker sent Griff the wrong way to close the gap. Then points from Kiely and Farrelly opened the gap before Ballymun got awarded a handy free which was duly stuck over. Castleknock were winning a lot of ball but the final pass was going astray. Then the referee decided to award Ballymun another penalty when the ball was touched on the ground in the square. The Ballymun player just managed to squeeze the shot by Griff.

It was backs to the wall time and Castleknock responded magnificently when Gerry Kelly won a bad Ballymun kickout and fed Dominic Smith who in turned found Davy Leydon who finished to the net from close range for the second week running. Dominic got a belt in the ribs for his troubles which means he’s not allowed carry fridges next week. Although he did manage to score a point to give Castleknock the victory.

Well at least one adult team from Dublin 15 won on Sunday!!!!! First league game against Erin’s Isle in Porterstown next Sunday.

Scorers: Barry Farrelly (1-3), Davy Leydon (1-0), Brendan Kiely (0-2), Ger Byrne (0-1), Dominic Smith (0-1), Eoghan O’Callghan (0-1)

Team: Martin Griffin, Alan Raftery, Denis Lally, Ambrose Galligan, Paddy Gaffney, Mark Mohan, Peter McKillen, Eoghan O’Callaghan, Stephen Lynch, Gerry Kelly, Barry Farrelly, Brendan Kiely, Ger Byrne, Dominic Smith, Davy Leydon, Sub used: Alfie Sawyer