Sunday, May 25, 2008

Men's Club Championships Final: TRR 1 Pembroke 0 (after golden goal)

Three Rock Rovers broke Pembroke Wanderers two year hold on the All-Ireland Club Championships with a ferocious Maarten Sier drag-flick with just 47 seconds of golden goal extra-time remaining.

In a nip and tuck game, with little quarter given, Pembroke probably edged the general play.

Rovers, in turn, had a number of chances but goalkeeper of the tournament David Harte smothered the chances, coming off his line before Mitch Darling could get a clean shot off.

Three Rock coach, Turloch O’Siochain, went into the finals weekend believing his side to be rank underdogs but they stood their ground in the face of a mighty Pembroke tide to claim their first ever President’s Trophy.

In the final, Pembroke – going in search of three in a row – settled the quickest with veteran Gordie Elliott looking the likeliest to unlock his former club’s defence.

He had the most clear-cut chance banging in but Charlie Henderson produced an amazing left-handed save. Indeed, the former Pembroke man was in unbelievable form all afternoon, later denying Alan Sothern’s deflection and Craig Wilson’s shot.

The early stages were played almost exclusively down the Rovers left channel, creating one of the key battles between Michael Maguire and Pembroke’s player–coach Craig Fulton.

Maguire won a victory of sorts in the match-up when Fulton was green carded and then sin-binned for some niggly tackles.

Rovers became more of a force in the second half. Mitch Darling – who scored five in the semi-final – and Andy McConnell were at the heart of everything good they had going forward.

David Harte came off his line twice to smother potential goal threats while in front of him, Ronan Gormley was outstanding - solid in defense and setting a number of attacks in motion with sublime overheads.

Sier, meanwhile, almost turned villain with a yellow with 80 seconds of normal time remaining for petulantly knocking the ball away.

Neither side, though, could get a crucial goal leading to extra-time. Three Rock, again, had most of the forward momentum and were eventually rewarded when Phelie Maguire was bundled over on his path to goal.

Sier held his nerve to convert to give the Rathfarnam side the the top prize in Irish hockey and a coveted EuroHockey League berth.


Queso said...

Amazing to note that Pembroke didn't score a single goal in 170 minutes of hockey... and in fairness didn't concede one in 169 minutes of hockey either!

noob said...

well except for the glenanne goal

Jason said...

Yep, the tv footage showed it was good. Baffling decision from where the ump was. I wonder what was said to him. Pity...

dave said...

Speaking of tv coverage you should get yourself on the commentary team steve I reckon you'd be good.