A game to remember in the barren winter months
Wexford People MFC premier sem-final
Abban O'Rahilly's just about came out on top of a high-quality, end-to-end Wexford People Coiste na nOg Minor football Premier championship semi-final clash with Taghmon-Camross in St. Patrick's Park.
Abban O'Rahilly's 0-17 Taghmon-Camross 1-10
For those there to witness this superb game of fast-paced football, under the Enniscorthy lights, it'll be a match that will be remembered fondly in the barren winter months when nothing else is going on.
It was almost metronomic in nature, with each piercing, intricate Abban O'Rahilly's attack followed by an equally attractive foray forward by the men in green. It was a game for forwards and there were several quality ones on show.
The result was tough on the underdogs who probably just lacked the experience that their opponents boasted. Four of the Abban O'Rahilly's players started in the last round of Senior football (Seán Barden and Liam Stafford for Adamstown, Mark Rossiter and Jack Burford for Gusserane) with others heavily involved with both squads.
Unsurprisingly that quartet were vital to the victors' cause in this one. They certainly needed their influence to come back from a terrible start. Stephen O'Gorman sent Luke Sinnott away on the right and with 62 seconds on the clock the full-forward found the net.
Ian Carty made it 1-1 to nil shortly after but with Sam Wall and Rossiter grabbing three points each, Abban O'Rahilly's fought their way back to level pegging at the change-around (0-7 to 1-4).
Taghmon-Camross hadn't trailed in the opening half but were always playing catch-up after the resumption. The victors edged ahead following points from Rossiter and the impressive Martin Fitzharris early on and were only caught once, in the 47th minute when Johnny Murphy levelled (0-12 to 1-9).
Yet Rossiter put the Adamstown/Gusserane side back in front just a minute later, a point that started a run of six of the next seven points for his side as they eased away in the last few minutes.
Abban O'Rahilly's now meet St. Martin's in the final. They faced each other back in July with the New Ross District combination coming out on top by five points so they will go into the title decider, which is set to go ahead on county Senior football final day (unless St. Martin's or Adamstown are involved) as favourites.
Abban O'Rahilly's: Pádraig Kavanagh; Donal Kiely, Ciarán Conway (capt.), Gavin Sheehan; Mark O'Neill, Seán Barden, Tomás French; Liam Stafford, John Roche; Martin Fitzharris (0-5), Jack Burford (0-2), Ronan Waters; Sam Wall (0-5), Mark Rossiter (0-5, 1 free), Harry Cosgrave. Subs. - James O'Shea for Kiely (31), J.P. Furlong for Waters (49), also Micheál Ryan, Rory Foran, Andrew French, Matthew Redmond.
Taghmon-Camross: Jack Dunne; Stephen O'Keeffe, David O'Keeffe, Darren Hayden; Daniel Furlong, Adam Winters, Stephen Stafford (0-1); Ian Carty (capt., 0-3 frees), Stephen O'Gorman (Old Boley, 0-1); Shane Doyle, Barry Og McGrath, Eoin Banville; Stuart Murphy (0-1), Luke Sinnott (1-2), Johnny Murphy (0-2). Subs. - Shane Leacy for Banville (49), also Anthony Roche, Anthony Doyle, Anthony Coady, Stephen O'Gorman (Camross), Owen McLoughlin.
Referee: Justin Heffernan (Blackwater).