It had to be be the most extraordinary result of the weekend, if not the season - Slieverue beating Emeralds (Urlingford) for the third consecutive year in the quarter-finals of the junior hurling championship, and there was the minimum in it again at the finish.
The winning point was shot by Eoin Kenny in injury-time after Emeralds had battled back from arrears of five points to draw level. While additional time dragged on to around seven minutes, Emeralds just couldn’t find an equaliser.
Emeralds, of course, were without their star man, former Kilkenny attacker, Aidan Fogarty, who sat out the action because of injury.
The early exchanges were close, and it was 0-5 each at the end of the first quarter, as the rain and slippery conditions hampered the teams.
Craig Phelan nabbed a goal for the winners in the 24th minute and that helped shoot them into an interval lead of 1-7 to 0-8.
It was a slow burn at the start of the new half before the action exploded and the game took off. When Liam Grant got the Emeralds going with a goal the team were level for the fourth time.
Slieverue hit back immediately for a point from Craig Phelan. The crucial thing was that Slieverue were looking sharper in front of goal. They shot five of the next six points to get a good grip on the game.
Emeralds cut loose afterwards and when Shane Norton forced the ball into the net after a penalty by Liam Grant had been saved, they dragged themselves back to parity. However, Kenny nailed them at the finish.
SCORERS: Slieverue Paul Rockett (0-9); Craig Phelan (1-3); Eoin Kenny (0-3); Eamon Phelan, Paul Rellis (0-1 each). Emeralds - Liam Grant (1-11); Shane Norton (1-0); Jamie Ryan, Eoin Moriarty (0-1 each).
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