On the first Sunday of August three teams, Mayobridge, Glenn and Saval contested the Cannon Murtagh Shield. The 9-a-side tournament got underway with Mayobridge vs Glenn, the ‘bridge got off to a flyer scoring goals at will against a dazed Glenn team. However as the game progressed goals from Gavin McParland and Jarlath McConagagy helped Glenn onto level terms with a minute remaining. Mayobridge frontman Aaron Gribben popped up with arguably the score of the tournament to give the ‘bridge a point victory.
The second game on show saw Saval vs Mayobridge. Saval after watching the first game and knew what to expect from their local rivals ran into an early lead with great solo goals from Ethan Lennon and Lorcan Forde. The ‘bridge (Division 1 team) were stunned by the quick start from their Division 3 rivals and the pressure didn’t let up with points from Turlough Shiels and Dean Rice after Ronan McCarthy put in hard work around the midfield to supply them. With brilliant defending from Daire Savage, Dean Rice, Peter Haughey and some first class saves from goalkeeper Jack ‘D’ Turley, the ‘bridge fired blanks for the majority of the first half. Saval lead at half time by 4 points. However straight from the throw up for the second half ‘bridge forward Conal Gallagher scored a goal which seemed to settle the ‘bridge and stifle Saval. This set the tone for the whole second half with Saval unable to rise to their first half heroics as the game favourite came through winners by 6points. Considering there is two divisions between Saval and the ‘bridge, all Saval under14 players put on a brilliant display which drew a large crowd watching this team for the first time.
Saval now lined up against Glenn where the winner proceeded to the final. In this game Saval never really got going and missed Ethan Lennon’s strong running and Lorcan Forde’s jinxing dangerous runs. Glenn dominated from the outset and didn’t have any trouble reaching the final. However Saval were able to give vital experience to young under 12 talent such as Jack Turley, Cormac Turley, Brendan Tumilty, Liam Dunne, Feidhlim Shiels, Ciaran Quinn, Odhran Goodman and under 10 player Liam Tumilty. Managers Adrian Savage, Frank Quinn and Damian Lennon agree that the future of men’s football will blossom with these young lads coming through the ranks.
After the group games over it left a final of Glenn vs Mayobridge and if their first game was anything to go by we were in for a treat. Two sets of players did not disappoint with the ‘bridge again similar to their first game racing into an early lead with goals and points from their impressive front two of Gribben and Gallagher. Going into half time the ‘bridge’ led by 6points leaving Glenn with it all to do. Nobody would bet against the sky blues taking the shield at half time. However Glenn came out with a fighting spirit and after a few ‘Joe Brolly/Sean Cavanagh’ moments from the ‘bridge, Glenn slowly but surely clawed their way back into the contest. With a large crowd watching, majority cheered on Glenn and with minutes left the ‘bridge winning by 2points Jarlath (Glenn Captain) skipped past his marker and with the ‘bridge goalkeeper between him and the goal, he rounded the keeper with a dummy, kicked the ball swiftly towards goal, the crowd started to celebrate, however out of nowhere Brandan McEvoy slid and managed to clear the ball off the line. The crowd and Glenn players couldn’t believe their eyes. It must be the ‘bridge’s day like many others. Until last minute Gavin McParland drilled a low shot into the bottom corner of the net to give Glenn the deserved win and Cannon Murtagh Shield.
Saval Chairman Cormac Canavan presented Glenn with the Cannon Murtagh Shield. All spectators agree that talent on show was very impressive and look forward to the tournament next year.