Thursday – 15th of December.
A rollercoaster of a game was played out between these two teams on Cahir Parks new state of the art astro-turf pitch last Thursday. The Thurles team started with all guns blazing giving our lads no time to play their passing game. Within 5 minutes they had gone ahead after a lapse in concentration in the Cahir defence. Thurles continued to dominate the game, with many of the passes by the Cahir players going astray and on the 20 minute it was 2.0.
Thurles second goal seemed to kick start the Cahir team into life and finally began to start playing the style of football that got them to an all-Ireland final two years ago. Unfortunately the half time whistle came at the wrong time for the Cahir team and they went at the break, 2.0 down with a mountain to climb.
The Colaiste lads started the second half with a vigour and a tenacity that we have often seen down through the years when they are trailing games. The Thurles team seemed to have given it their all in the opening half and were beginning to tire. After 10 minutes of the second half, Cian Murphy struck a fine shot from the edge of the box which nestled into the corner of the Thurles net. The Colaiste comeback was aided when a Thurles defender received a straight red card for a late challenge on Partick Doyle. From here on in the Cahir team was bombarding the Thurles goal with every chance they got but the time was beginning to tick by. With 5 minutes left Kenny Cunningham hit a ferocious shot that hit one post and cannoned off the other. The ball seemed to go behind the line but the incoming Cian Murphy made sure it was before the Thurles keeper got his full hands on the ball.
To extra-time and the fatigue was showing with players suffering from cramp and a number of substitutes coming on from both teams. The Cahir team had all the possession at this stage with Dylan Fitzgerald and Tommy McDonagh showing well for the ball and setting things up for the forwards. In the second half of extra time a through ball was played up to Ryhs Byron who dribbled the ball passed two players and buried the ball into the back of the net. 3.2 to Cahir, and it looked game over.
However, in the last minute of the game, Thurles kicked a speculate ball into the Cahir penalty box, which resulted in the ball ending up in the Cahir net after what looked like a foul on our goalkeeper Dominic Mlynczak .
The drama was to continue during the penalty shoot out with Cian Murphy, Dylan Flynn and Dylan Fitzpatrick all coolly slotting home 4 out of our 5 penalties. Thankfully Dominic saved one as well sending the it to sudden death. The unfortunate Thurles player sent his shot over the bar and it was left to David Murphy to win it for Cahir with a clinical finish giving the Cahir team a deserved win after what was an astonishing game of football.