John Duignan presenting the JJ Duignan Cup to Slashers captain Cian Kavanagh along with Longford GAA Chairperson Albert Cooney Photo: Syl Healy
Boosted by a brilliant start that yielded a couple of crucial goals in the space of a minute in the county final at Glennon Brothers Pearse Park on Sunday, Longford Slashers never looked like letting a sweet success slip from their grasp in winning the Senior Hurling Championship title for the first time since 2001.
Longford Slashers . . . 4-11 Wolfe Tones Mostrim . . . 1-14
Man of the match award winner Reuben Murray got the vital touch to flick a Cian Kavanagh free into the back of the net with seven minutes gone on the clock and moments later the Wolfe Tones keeper Thomas Stakem was beaten again.
A long range free from Kavanagh ended up in the net and it got even worse for the reigning champions when Paul Leonard scored the third goal for Slashers in the 22nd minute, created by livewire corner-forward Michael Mulcahy.
While Wolfe Tones were thrown a lifeline with a goal from Ian Campbell in the 24th minute, whatever hopes they had of salvaging the situation were dashed when Slashers midfielder Ronan Sheehan weaved his way through to snatch another goal in first half stoppage time to leave his side in a commanding 4-6 to 1-7 lead at the break.
Slashers (managed by Niall Ward) were worthy winners and can now look forward to meeting the Laois Intermediate champions in the first round of the Leinster Junior Club competition on the week ending Sunday November 21.
LONGFORD SLASHERS: Conor Gallagher; Paddy Hegarty, Daire Regan, Keelan Cox; Iarlaith Dolan, Karl Murray, Stephen Farrell (0-1); Johnny Casey (0-1), Ronan Sheehan (1-0); Paul Leonard (1-0), Cian Kavanagh (1-4, goal and three points from frees), Ciaran Farrell; Michael Mulcahy (0-2), Reuben Murray (1-3, one point from free), Coilin Regan.
Subs:- Willian Tunstead for C Farrell (48 mins); Damien Dunne for P Leonard (55 mins); Jack Linnane for M Mulcahy (stoppage time); Rory Maher for S Farrell (stoppage time).
WOLFE TONES MOSTRIM: Thomas Stakem; Joe Gaffney, Cian McLoughlin, Adam Quinn; Aidan Sheridan, Daire Duggan, Ethan Dolan; Daniel Connell, Evan Tully; Maitiu O’Donohoe (0-2), Martin Coyle (0-3), Luke Kelly (0-5, two frees, two ‘65s’); Tiarnan Hussey (0-3), John Mulhern (0-1), Ian Cambpell (1-0).
Subs:- Ciaran Fahy for E Dolan (half-time); John Newman for I Campbell (55 mins); Pearse McNally for J Gaffney (57 mins); Adam Connaughton for M O’Donohoe (stoppage time).
Referee: Liam Gordon (Galway).
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