Fulham Irish 2-7 to Cu Chulainn’s 4-19
Collins Cup Round 3.
Saturday, June 18 2016
A much-depleted Fulham side played Cu Chulainn’s in round three of the Collins Cup at their home ground on Saturday.
Cu Chulainn’s had made their intention clear from the start as they registered three wides in the first four minutes before scoring a point on their fourth attempt.
Fulham replied back within two minutes as Cu Chulainn’s gave away a free around the halfway line and Donal Casey stepped up to get his name on the scoresheet.
Both teams exchanged a further two points with the game set at three apiece when Kev Davy broke free from his marker on route to goal only to have his jersey pulled; this resulted in a free to Fulham which Casey converted over the bar.
It was then Cu Chulainn’s worked the ball from the back line and dropped a teaser into Irish’s backline which could not be cleanly gathered and as the breaking ball headed towards the Fulham goal, stand-in goalkeeper Don O’Connell made a valiant effort to stop any further progression of the sliotar. However in doing so, he unfortunately injured himself and fell down to the ground with the ball rolling to the left of him, into the path of Cu Chulainns’s who recorded their first of what would end up being four goals. It was then the moment was on the side of Cu Chulainn’s and their two London County players, started to dominate the game as the majority of the ball was channelled through them.
Cu Chulainn’s started to shift their half forward line into midfield allowing both of their London stars to create space and attack from both sides , as Fulham’s midfield and backs tried to counteract the game plan.
Irish pulled two points back, with one lovely score from Luke Slyman who turned his mark.
Just before half time, a high ball into the reserve goal keeper, Mick Ruby, was hard to deal with and landed into the back of the net.
A further couple of points by Cu Chulainn’s left them in the commanding lead at half time. 2-10 to 0-6
The second half pretty much started as the first one ended, with Cu Chulainns now shifting the halfback line up to midfield and back. Fulham tried their upmost to deal with the play, but Cu Chulainn’s continued to find space and, between their two London players, rallied off more points.
Then a stray ball in Cu Chulainn’s backs gave Kev Mooney the chance to put the stick onto it and he put the sliotar in the back of the net. Maybe the moment was about to shift?
With John Condon coming on as replacement for Luke Slyman, he scored a goal on his debut for Irish.
Two goals and still time for Fulham to pull back the score line, but this just rattled Cu Chulainn’s who upped their game and continued to put the Irish backs under pressure. Despite a further two goals being conceded, James McSweeney, John McHugh and Mark O’Grady were relentless in trying to stop the drive of Cu Chulainn’s. Time was not on the side of the Irish as Cu Chulainn’s managed to temper any resurgence Fulham had.
The final whistle gone and the score line ended up 2-7 to 4-19.
Cu Chulainn’s were the dominate team with a great display from their two London stars. Whilst the score line does not suggest it, Fulham’s work rate & fitness was seconded to none, but things were just not clicking right on the day for Fulham.
The team will be disappointed with the display as they know they are a far better squad than the score line suggest.
Fulham Irish: Don O’Connell, John McHugh, James McSweeny, Mark O’Grady, Matt Silke, Darragh Ryan, Richie Hannon, Lee Darcy, Mike Broder, Mick Harte, Kevin Mooney, Donal Casey, Luke Slymanm Kevin Davy, Colm Foley, Andy McCahey, Mick Ruby, Dermot Fitzgerald, David Gray and John Condon.