Warwickshire …. 0-18
Fermanagh travelled home to Ireland with a crucial win in their first fixture in the Lory Meagher Cup following a battling performance against a Warwickshire side who, as expected, fielded their strongest side of the year.
Fermanagh were missing a number of regular with Eoin Mahon, Shane Mullholand and JP McGarry all absent but they were able to welcome back to the fold John Duffy who made a telling contribution in the final twenty minutes to secure the two points on offer.
Duffy took responsibility to drill home a penalty goal with the sides level and that score acted as the catapult to secure Fermanagh the win.
The Erne side had started at a blistering pace and raced into a 1-06 to 0-00 lead after the first 15 minutes. But Warwickshire came back into the game and by the break they had reduced that margin to just four points. Brendan McGarry rattled the net during that time and he also added a point. Sean Corrigan was accurate with frees while Shea Curran, Declan McGarry and Francie McBrien from midfield also split the posts.
Warwickshire though were not going to give up that easily at home and they played some lovely hurling to get back into the game. Both Mark Slevin and Daniel Teague were excellent in defence for Fermanagh during this time and just before the break Mark Curry pulled off a brilliant save in the Erne goal to ensure the home side did not enter the break just a solitary point in arrears.
The momentum stayed with the exiles upon the resumption and they were the dominant side and actually took the lead by a single point. Fermanagh’s backs were against the wall but they came out fighting and in Duffy had a player who would relish the occasion.
Corrigan drew the sides level before Declan McGarry collected well in the square and when he was upended the referee had no doubt in awarding the penalty. Duffy took responsibility and hammered the ball low into the back of the net.
The score put Fermanagh three points to the good and from that point they were in control of the game. A few tactical substitutions and positional switches saw them adopt two sweepers in their own defence and as Warwickshire came looking for the all important scores to get them back in the game Fermanagh hit on the counter and picked off the insurance scores to give them the perfect start to the Lory Meagher Cup.
Next up for Fermanagh is Leitrim at home on Saturday where a win for Fermanagh along with a win for Longford against Warwickshire in the other group game would see the Erne men and Longford win through to the final to be played in Croke Park.
M Curry; D Teague, E Morrisey, A Breslin, M Teague, M Slevin, F Bannon, R Bogue, F McBrien, B McGarry, T Cleary, S Curran, S Corrigan, D McGarry, C Corrigan. Subs; M Beggan, R Porteus
To read more.. Subscribe to current edition