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Newmarket GAA

Seniors face relegation battle

Newmarket bowed out of the Cork County Senior Football Championship following a most disappointing defeat, by 1-8 to 0-5 against St. Vincents in a poor quality contest played at Mallow on Sunday afternoon. Newmarket now face an uphill battle and a relegation playoff encounter against St. Nicks in order to maintain their senior status. On a day of utter frustration, the fact that Newmarket held numerical advantage entering the closing fifteen minutes, when the sides were level and failed to register another score further compounds the misery.

St. Vincents began brightly and in what would prove totally out of context in relation to a dour, dull encounter, the city side managed to kick three fine points within the opening six minutes.

Newmarket eventually gained a platform and converted frees from both Daniel Culloty and John Ryan, with the bulk of the scoring taking place within the first ten minutes of the game.

St. Vincents added a fourth point in the twelfth minute before they would go through a spell of a thirty one minute wait before their next score.

Both sides lacked nothing in endeavour with Newmarket in particular impressively harassing and turning over possession numerous times. The two sets of defenders held sway with Padraig Allen a towering and impressive performer for Newmarket.

On the other hand, both sets of forwards were extremely erratic with some unforgiveable wides being registered while David Quinlan and his opposite number in goals plucked several efforts from going over the bar throughout, as well as seeing as many again, dropping short into their grasp.

Newmarket added a third point in the twenty third minute with the lively John Ryan slotting over a free from the right hand side. As the half concluded, Newmarket ensured parity for the first time of the game. Barry O’Leary burst forward and found team captain Tony O’Keeffe with a long delivery. Tony O’Keeffe evaded his opponent before drilling the ball barely over the crossbar.

In another disappointing statistic, this would prove to be Newmarket’s solitary score from open play. As the half time whistle blew, Newmarket found themselves in a good position and level at 0-4 apiece.

The second half was enduring for the sparse attendance to witness. Newmarket simply could not buy a score, as despite numerous favourable scoring positions the final execution was both disappointing and at times alarmingly poor.

Both sides struggled terribly in front of goal in the third quarter before eventually John Ryan stepped forward to slot over a free twelve minutes into the half, to give Newmarket the lead for the only time in the game. This would prove to be Newmarket’s only score of the half, another damning statistic to their overall shortcomings on the day.

St. Vincents replied instantly to ensure a tied contest at 0-5 apiece. The pendulum appeared to swing in Newmarket’s favour as St. Vincents were then reduced to fourteen men, but despite dominating possession, Newmarket failed to record a solitary score while St. Vincents were resolute and defended manfully.

As the game entered the closing five minutes and with only two points scored up to this point, suddenly St. Vincents seized the initiative and finished the game with aplomb. A close in free saw the city side regain the lead and they sealed the issue with the games only goal moments later. The victors were now in full flow with Newmarket obviously deflated by events. Two more St. Vincents points compounded the misery as they showed great character and desire to turn around a most difficult position into a fine win.

Newmarket must now regroup to play St. Nicks in a relegation final.

The Newmarket team and scorers…

John Ryan (0-3), Tony O’Keeffe (0-1), Daniel Culloty (0-1).

David Quinlan
Paudie Allen Brian O’Riordan Barry O'Leary
Paddy O'Toole Mark Reidy T. J. Brosnan
Colin O'Sullivan Bart Daly
Michael Kenneally Kevin O'Sullivan Tony O'Keeffe
John Ryan David Enright Michael Cottrell
Subs: Donal Hannon, John Lane

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