Top-class display from Tomkins
Super Shane Tomkins really struck top form for Askamore in The Courtyard Ferns Intermediate hurling championship Group A tie at Camolin on Thursday, as he finished with a phenomenal personal tally of 17 points.
Askamore 0-26 Oulart-Ballagh 2-11
Seven of those scores were picked off from play from all angles, with the other ten coming during a wonderful display of free-taking that fell only just short of being immaculate, as he missed one during the second-half at a time when he already had seven successful conversions to his name.
The powerhouse scoring performance meant Askamore were always comfortably in charge, save for a brief spell around 45 minutes when Oulart-The Ballagh's first goal was rapidly followed up by a point, to leave just four between the sides.
Askamore had three of the next four scores though, and then finished by far the stronger in the final ten minutes to eventually win by a nine-point margin that didn't flatter them at all.
They already led by 0-10 to 0-5 at the break, with six scores from Tomkins being supplemented by others from Pádraig Byrne (two), P.J. Nolan and Garry Doran.
Oulart-The Ballagh mentors responded at the break by moving Darren Stamp from his midfield starting position to full-forward, but instead Tomkins again kept the umpires busy as he shot six (four frees) in the opening eight minutes of the new period.
They had stretched their lead to 0-17 to 0-9 by the three-quarter hour mark, when Murtha Doyle pounced for that first Oulart-The Ballagh goal, and he added a point two minutes later to make it 0-17 to 1-10.
That was as good as it got for them though, as Askamore went to work on building their lead again by shooting the next five points, including an absolute monster free from Tomkins from his own 45-metre line.
Murtha Doyle goaled again on 57 minutes to bring the score back to 0-22 to 2-11 and to bring his own tally to 2-3 (one that might have made the headlines on another night), but really this was the Tomkins show as he added another couple in the closing stages.
Substitutes Edmund Kenny and Conor Travers really wrapped it up for Askamore with further points late on.
Askamore: Brian Hayden; David Travers, Frank Lancaster, Patrick Nolan; James Lancaster, Tommy Devereux (0-1), Colm Buttle; Conor Levingstone, Garry Doran (0-1); P.J. Nolan (0-2), Gavin Sunderland, Shane Tomkins (0-17, 10 frees); Billy Nolan, Frank Boggan, Pádraig Byrne. Subs. - Edmund Kenny (0-2) for Sunderland (39), Raymond Lancaster for B, Nolan (43), Conor Travers (0-1) for Doran, inj. (58).
Oulart-The Ballagh: Ben O'Connor; John Murphy, Anthony Roche, Ian Storey; Nicholas Cullen, Eamon Murphy, Laurence Prendergast; Thomas Dunne (0-1), Darren Stamp; James O'Toole, Colin Sunderland (0-1), Peadar Mythen (0-2); Martin Og Storey (0-1), Billy Dunne (0-3 frees), Murtha Doyle (2-3). Subs. - Aaron Kenny for Mythen (39), Cormac Finn for Sunderland (39), Michael O'Dowd for O'Toole (46).
Referee: Pádraig Byrne (Ballyfad).