KILKENNY champions, Thomastown, looked sure and confident when they made light of the terrible weather conditions as they produced a top class performance to coast into the Leinster club junior hurling final, beating Naomh Eanna (Wexford) by 1-24 to 0-10.
The visitors to the Naomh Eanna grounds in Wexford on Sunday set out their stall early and ripped into the opposition. They drilled over one good point after another to more or less grab the ticket into the final on Sunday week by the break when they led by a commanding 0-18 to 0-3.
The opposition in the decider will be provided Rathmolyon (Trim), who played in the Meath senior championship two years ago. The game will be played in Pairc Tailteann, Navan on Sunday week.
The ’Town looked like a team in a hurry to get the business done once the ball was thrown-in. Stuart wAugh, Jonjo Farrell and Michael Donnelly (free) all drilled over points within the opening five minutes as Naomh Eanna were left in the blocks.
The winners had five points on the scoreboard before the Slaneysiders opened their account with a point from a free by Justin Kenny in the seventh minute. The visitors continued to pile up the scores, and Darren Burke, Donnelly, Farrell and Thomas O’Hanrahan sent the white flying before Padraig Doyle had the losers second score in the 13th minute.
Already the game was running away from the home team as they looked up front he wrong end of a 0-2 to 0-7 scoreline. Thomastown didn’t take the foot off the pedal. With good, well aimed ball being delivered from defence by the likes of Peter O’Hanrahan and with midfielders, Dessie Walsh and Derek Lanigan totally dominant, the home team was all but over-run.
The divide at half-time was a whopping 15 points (0-18 to 0-3), but there was no respite for Naomh Eanna after the turn. Donnlly, Burke and Farrell all picked off minor scores for the winners in the early minutes of the new half.
When Thomas O’Hanrahan punished a defensive error by Naomh Eanna by shooting a handy goal in the 42nd minute the score read 1-21 to 0-5. There was no way back for the home team from that lowly position.
Thomastown broke the opposition during the opening half when they played some of their best hurling of the season, which was some going in trying conditions. They used the opportunity in the second half to give five subs a taste of action.
Scorers: Thomastown - Michael Donnelly (0-9, four frees); Johnjo Farrell (0-5, one free); Darren Burke (0-5); Thomas O’Hanrahan (1-1); Stuart Waugh (0-2); Dessie Walsh, James Hoyne (0-1 each). Naomh Eanna - Justin Kenny (0-5, four frees, one 65); Padraig Doyle (0-3, two frees); Conor McDonald, Niall Kirwan (0-1 each).
Thomastown - Dylan Walsh, Sean Mahony, Shane Lanigan, Brian Murphy, Barry Whelan, Peeter O’Hanrahan, Richard O’Hara, Dessie Walsh, Derek lanigan, Dylan Waugh, Michael Donnelly, Darren Burke, Thomas O’Hanrahan, Jonjo Farrell, Stuart waugh. Subs - James Hoyne, David Prendergast, Gary Lehane, Robert O’Hanrahan, Padraig Caulfield.
Naomh Eanna - Barry Kinsella, Peter Travers, Brendan Travers, Eoin conroy, John O’Brien, Darren Kelly, Lee Kinsella, Justin Kenny, Tom Stafford, William Cullen, Michael Murphy, Conor Hughes, Padraig Doyle, Conor McDonald, David O’Brien. Subs - Jamie Cullen, Sean Doyle, Niall Kirwan.