Clonkill regained their senior hurling crown after a hard fought contest against a plucky Castletown side in front of a decent-sized crowd in Cusack Park last Sunday.
The younger Castletown side threatened to tear up the script as they entered the break with a four-point advantage. Ultimately though it was Clonkill’s greater edge in experience which allowed them turn things around when it mattered most to claim their fourth title in the past 11 years.
Both sides traded points in the early stages before the men in black and amber hit a purple patch in the second quarter when they hit five unanswered points. An Enda Loughlin point left the scoreboard reading 0-8 to 0-4 at the break.
The same player reduced the deficit to three shortly after the re-start. The turning point of the match came in the 35th minute when substitute Alan Dowdall goaled to leave just one between the sides.
Influential Eoin Price levelled matters on the three-quarters mark before points from team-mates Enda Loughlin, Alan McGrath, and Anthony Price gave the winners some breathing space.
Castletown to their credit refused to lie down and a brace of points saw the deficit reduced to the bare minimum. Goal scorer Alan Dowdall fired over to give his side a vital two-point cushion. Try as they might Castletown could not breech the Clonkill rearguard and on this occasion had to settle for second best.
Clonkill are worthy champions and will no doubt do Westmeath proud when they take on the Dublin champions in early November. For their part this young Castletown outfit will have learned a lot this year and along with Clonkill and Raharney are sure to have a big say in the outcome of next year’s championship.