Intermediate vs Man-o-War
Sunday, 31st March 2019

Result: 2-08 to 0-12
The third match of the intermediate football team's league campaign was eagerly awaited after an extended break for the St. Patrick's weekend. The visitors on this occasion to Ballycullen were the intriguingly named Man O'War  from the county's northern heartland. Apparently it's derived from Mean Bharr "or middle height" but we'll let the reader do some research.
It was a typical cool calm spring morning and the Ballycullen playing fields looked immaculate. Pockets of spectators assembled randomly around the pitch awaiting the imminent clash of the Boden and Man O'War warriors.
From the off Man O'War got into their stride and tapped over an early point. These lads meant business and were bringing a slick fast-paced game to challenge the home team. Dylan Walsh responded with a point in the fourth minute which was quickly followed by Boden attempts for a point and a goal, both of which were wide. The pace of the game was electric with both teams threatening to carve open the opposition with every attack. The visitors pointed a long range free from the 45m line in the 10th minute and following a wide popped over another point to go 2 points ahead. Boden were looking a little ragged in defence but Fionn, Karl and Fergal were just doing enough to maintain some order. In the 18th minute some skilful attacking interplay between Scott and David resulted in Dylan unleashing a shot that was saved by the keeper. The game was beginning to open up and following a wide Mikey Dunne took a pass from Lewis to pop over a point to reduce the deficit.
Moments later Johnny Murphy delivered a 30m pass down the left wing to Mikey who slipped around his marker and ran in on goal to place the ball calmly into the corner of the net. The score was now 1-2 to 0-3 to Boden.
There then followed a series of wides by both teams - testament to the pressure being applied by both defences.
The next score was a goal by Ev Flanagan now plying his trade at full forward. Seeing the difficulty the full back was having trying to pass to a teammate Ev block the attempted pass and stole in on goal with the ball and delivered it sweetly to the net. Almost from the kick-out David broke forward and passed to Ev who slotted over a point. It was half-time and Boden led 2-3 to 0-3.
The second half began with Man O'War adopting route one tactics and the first missile fell nicely into the grateful hands of Mark McNamee. The second half started with a more intense Man O'War approach and Boden were just about managing. Nonetheless after a Keith slip the visitors tapped over a point and quickly followed it with a point from a 30m free. After some good approach play by Dylan and Ev it was Lewis who steered the shot wide for Boden. Boden were still creating chances. Neil then replaced Dylan in the middle and his telepathic connection to our keeper saw him win a number of kickouts. Boden were still in the game but the intensity had certainly lifted. Mikey and Cian tapped over a brace of points and Man O'War tapped over 3 points. Entering the final quarter Liamo replaced David and Tommy replaced Keith. The game was in the balance when Man O'War converted two frees to reduce the margin to the bare minimum.
In the closing stages points from Liamo, Mikey and Scott were responses to a couple of points from Man O'War. A narrow but well-deserved victory.
Mark McNamee, Fionn Maguire, Fergal Haran, Karl Reddy, Keith Sweeney, Scott Cullen (0-1), John Murphy, Dylan Walsh (0-1), Ciaran Archbold, Cathal O'Dea, Ev Flanagan (1-1), David Hayes, Mikey Dunne (1-3), Lewis Cawley, Cian Bates (0-1). Neil Hester for D Walsh (39'), Liam Flaherty (0-1) for D Hayes (44'), Tommy Burke for K Sweeney (49'). Not used: Eoghan Monahan, Seamus Keane, Stephen McGrath
Fógra: It was great to have Mick Maher back on the sideline after recent ill-health
Fógra eile: thanks to the umpires Ciaran Maguire and Shane Brooks and the other helpers on the day Peter Shovlin, Jack Nolan and Eoin Dunne.