Cuala Senior Hurlers have claimed a place in this years Dublin Senior Hurling Championship Final by overcoming St Vincents in the Semi Final with a scoreline of 3-21 to 1-16.
Read the RTE Match Report
Cuala 3-21 St Vincent’s 1-16
Hurling heavyweights Cuala are back on familiar ground, securing their fourth Dublin SHC final place in five seasons with a big semi-final win at Parnell Park.
Powered on again by football superstar Con O’Callaghan, who scored 0-05 from play, and experienced attacker Mark Schutte, who hit 1-03, the 2017 and 2018 All-Ireland winners advanced as anticipated.
Colm Cronin and Sean Treacy also netted for the south Dubliners who will return to the Donneycarney venue in 14 days to take on St Brigid’s in the final.
Cuala, who achieved a three-in-a-row of Dublin title successes between 2015 and 2017, will be hot favourites to claim their seventh county crown against a Brigid’s side who reached their one and only previous final in 2003.
Managed by former All-Ireland minor winning Tipperary boss Willie Maher, Cuala were impressive throughout with all of their forwards and both midfielders getting on the score-sheet.
If Cuala were motivated by revenge before demolishing Kilmacud Crokes by 13 points in the quarter-finals, avenging last year’s semi-final defeat, this was a more cool and clinical dismissal.
Brian Bolger did give Vincents the perfect start with a goal after 40 seconds when he blasted across the goalkeeper from the right after a neat move.
But Cuala’s response was emphatic with a goal themselves in the fourth minute through Treacy when he tapped in from close range after Vincent’s failed to deal with Schutte’s ball in from the right.
Schutte, fit again after shoulder trouble, then tapped in himself after more confusion in the Vins defence in the ninth minute and suddenly Cuala were up and running with a 2-03 to 1-00 lead.
Conor Burke and county man John Hetherton were Vincents’ main men in attack and Hetherton in particular was involved in some impressive plays, flicking back over his own head to set up Cian McBride for a clever 14 minute point.
But Cuala were at their ease for the most part and bursts of 0-03 and then 0-02 without reply before the break, O’Callaghan hitting the last two scores, left them 2-13 to 1-06 clear.
Vincent’s, who dethroned holders Ballyboden in the quarter-finals after extra-time, restarted with four points on the spin.
But that was as good as it got for them with Cuala soon finding their groove again and clipping scores from O’Callaghan, Schutte, Nicky Kenny and Jake Malone.
Cronin sniped Cuala’s third goal eight minutes from time and it was followed by O’Callaghan’s fifth point of the day with boss Maher opting to replace the five-in-a-row football star late on.
Cuala: Sean Brennan; Cian O’Callaghan, Diarmaid O Floinn, Oisin Gough; Simon Timlin, Sean Moran, Jake Malone (0-01); Sean Treacy (1-00), Colum Sheanon (0-02); Darragh O’Connell (0-03), Colm Cronin (1-02), David Treacy (0-01, 0-01f); Con O’Callaghan (0-05), Nicky Kenny (0-04), Mark Schutte (1-03).
Subs: Naoise Waldron for Kenny (48), Michael Conroy for Cian O’Callaghan (56), Cian Waldron for Malone (57), Liam Murphy for Sheanon (59), Emmett Murphy for Con O’Callaghan (60).
St Vincent’s: Dara de Poire; Rory Pocock, Ruairi Trainor, Ciaran Harney; Frankie Power, Mark O’Farrell, Tom Connolly; Mark Sweeney (0-01), Rian McBride (0-02); Brian Bolger (1-00), Conor Burke (0-05), John Hetherton (0-5, 0-4f); Cian McBride (0-2), Will Moloney, John Walsh (0-1).
Subs: Ronan Fallon for Harney (h/t), Neal Billings for Trainor (43), Alan Moore for Moloney (48), Stephen McCarry for Connolly (56).
Referee: PJ Murray (St Finians).