Cuala produced a superb second-half turnaround at Parnell Park on Saturday to get the better of Ballyboden St Enda’s in Group One of the Go Ahead Dublin Senior One Hurling Championship.
Seven points adrift (2-15 to 0-14) with 41 minutes on the clock, the Dalkey club were seemingly heading towards their first defeat of the campaign.
However, the eight-time champions dug deep in the closing stages and ultimately got the better of their southside rivals on a final scoreline of 2-23 to 2-17.
Not only did this win – their fourth in succession – help them to leapfrog ‘Boden, it also secured an automatic place at the semi-final stage of this top-tier competition.
Joining Ballyboden in a forthcoming quarter-final will be 2021 runners-up Na Fianna. It has been a somewhat mixed campaign for the Glasnevin men in Group One, but a narrow 2-15 to 1-16 success over St Oliver Plunkett’s/Eoghan Ruadh at O’Toole Park on Saturday proved crucial in squeezing them into third spot.
Na Fianna created daylight during the early exchanges with a fifth-minute goal from Shane Barrett, before Plunkett’s came storming into contention with Niall Arthur and Cian Boland both prominent. Ben McSweeney also rattled the back of the opposition net, but with Liam Rushe doing likewise, the St Mobhi Road outfit brought a 2-9 to 1-9 advantage into the interval.
Plunkett’s continued to pile the pressure on when the play resumed, but with Colin Currie contributing 0-3 from play, Na Fianna claimed the win.
Their opponents in the last-eight of the championship will be northside neighbours St Vincent’s, who finished second in Group Two despite suffering a 2-25 to 3-18 reversal to defending champions Kilmacud Crokeson Saturday.
Meanwhile, Lucan Sarsfields claimed the coveted third spot in Group Two thanks to a 2-17 to 1-11 success at the expense of St Brigid’s in O’Toole Park.
Dublin senior hurler Chris Crummey and Chris O’Leary were amongst the goals as Lucan overcame a comprehensive loss to Kilmacud in the previous round to finish a point ahead of Brigid’s.
in the final standings.
Beaten finalists against Ballyboden St Enda’s in 2013, Sarsfields will now take on the same club in the last-eight of the 2022 edition of the championship.
Action from Cuala’s win over Ballyboiden last weekend. Photo: Clíona Mellett