Inside Track with John McIntyre
COROFIN made a mockery of some pre-match speculation that they were vulnerable against a rising Mountbellew-Moylough outfit in Sunday’s one-sided county football final at Tuam Stadium. In completing a magnificent five-in-a-row, the champions underlined their pedigree with their best display of the year.
Having rode their luck in a hard-earned semi-final triumph over Annaghdown, Corofin had the quality and the mentality to heed that lesson and they were a different beast altogether in scoring twice as much as Mountbellew-Moylough in a decider which saw plenty of off-the-ball tangles and little in the way of the expected competitive struggle.
Corofin did appear in some trouble at the break when only holding onto a 0-8 to 0-4 advantage having played with the wind and seemingly suffering a big blow with the dismissal of Cathal Silke. Instead, the match was over less than ten minutes into the second half after both raiding defender, Conor Cunningham, and Martin Farragher rattled the net.
From there to the finish, Corofin were in cruise control and to compound Mountbellew-Moylough’s gloom, the long serving Joe Bergin got the line for an incident involving Gary Sice. Overall, their largely young team failed to reproduce much of the tempo of the club’s knock-out victories, but they simply weren’t let.
Wing back Paul Donnellan did score two late points from play and Barry McHugh was threatening, but overall Mountbellew-Moylough lacked the guile, physicality and quality to even come close to capturing their first county title since 1986. They got a tough lesson, but the decision to face the elements in the opening half, together with Michael Daly’s struggles, didn’t help them either.
Corofin were ready for Sunday. Having survived that reality check against Annaghdown, they responded with the type of clinical display which has been the hallmark of the club’s ongoing dominance of Galway football. They hit the ground running, quickly opening a 0-4 to 0-0 advantage with the influential Ronan Steede, Michael Farragher and two Jason Leonard frees laying down an early marker.
For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.