Carrickshock G.A.A. 12 Feabhra 2017

 Carrickshock Intermediate Hurling Panel.

From Callan to Croker

This is a story that began in John Locke’s Park Callan last April 27th. That was the day of an 8 point defeat for the Carrickshock hurlers’ against Lisdwoney in the 1st round of the Kilkenny Intermediate league. Few would have predicted that the story would continue all the way to a Croke Park meeting with Galway champions Ahascragh Fohenagh in the Club IHC All Ireland Final next Saturday, February 18th.

Like any good story, there were plenty of twists and turns, highs and lows, along the way. Thankfully, the lows generally came at the right time. That 1st round defeat was quickly forgotten three weeks later with an 8 point win over Thomastown in Mullinavat, a game that seemed to ignite the season. A few more wins on the tour of South Kilkenny – Dunnamaggin in Windgap, Tullogher in Piltown – set them up nicely for the final stages of the league. So a defeat to St Lachtains in the last round didn’t matter. A disappointing display in the League Final against Tullaroan prompted a rejig of the line-up for the Championship.

First up in the Championship was Lisdowney and revenge for that early league defeat. Then in the semi-final it was Tullaroan again, only 3 weeks after the league final defeat. In a thrilling encounter Carrickshock booked their place in the County Final by the slimmest of margins. The county final win over Tullogher maybe didn’t reach the heights of the semi-final, but that didn’t dampen celebrations.

Two weeks later, a new chapter in the story began, starting with a trip to Trim for a dour, hard-fought Leinster semi-final win over Meath champions Kiltale. The Leinster final against Celbridge in Newbridge was anything but dour – from 6 points down with 4 minutes left, still 3 down in injury time, a 2 point win for Carrickshock surely goes down as The Great Escape. Then the All-Ireland Semi-Final was, as they say, there to be won. And it was won by half-time but the referee and Robert Emmets made a game of it in the 2nd half. But there was no doubt that day about who was on the way to Croker.

This leaves us ten months in, and another chapter still to be written next Saturday. It’s no wonder the GAA can boast about this being #TheToughest. Tommy, Pat and Larry will again have had a three week spell to work their magic before the final. If you’re not on the convoy of buses to Dublin you’ll surely be able catch KCLR on the radio or web, watch the video on Local Steaming or follow the scores on Twitter. We’ll make this the largest audience ever to witness an Intermediate All Ireland – Period!

All Ireland Final Arrangements

Note the following arrangements for the All Ireland Final: Throw-in Saturday at 4:45 in Croke Park. Buses are close to sold out, but try your luck on 087 9715304. Tickets from local SuperValu shops, children €5, adults €20. You could also try your local friendly AIB branch for spare tickets!

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