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Senior Hurlers Earn Deserved Draw In Christy Ring Cup

Sunday 16.04.2023
Team Talk Mag
All Ireland Series


Christy Ring Cup

Tyrone 2-20 Derry 2-20

Derry left O Neills Healy Park disappointed on Sunday afternoon after picking up a share of the spoils in their Christy Ring Cup encounter with Tyrone.

The visitors looked to be on top and in complete control at the break when leading 1-11 to 0-6 but they came up against a fired up Red Hands side in the second half who actually got their noses in front before falling behind and then grabbing a late equaliser through centre half forward Sean Duffin’s superb equalising point.

Derry were very much in control at the break leading by eight points after recovering from a slow start. With twenty minutes gone only two points separated the two sides but six fine unanswered scores from the visitors put them in a strong position.

Tyrone had a couple of early wides from Sean Duffin and Dermot Begley before Derry opened the scoring in style in the 4th minute. Elusive full forward John Mullan left Ruairi Devlin for dead with a razor sharp turn before giving keeper Liam Dunphy no chance with a clinical finish low to the net.

James Friel tagged on a point before Ruairi Slane opened Tyrone’s account in the 6th minute with a quality strike from out on the left wing. Aidan Kelly then converted a long range free for the home side before Darragh McGilligan cut inside his marker for a superb response for Derry.

Tyrone though were battling for every ball with Sean Og Grogan splitting the posts, a score that was immediately cancelled out at the other end of the field by Mullan. Begley and Paddy Kelly exchanged points before Tyrone corner back Fionn Devlin took the score of the half from under the stand to leave it 1-4 to 0-5.

There was little between the sides at that stage but then Derry moved through the gears to take a stranglehold on proceedings. Team Captain Cormac ODoherty got things moving with a 70m free and that was followed by a brilliant brace from distance from influential centre half back Richie Mullan. 

Eamon Conway then got on the scoresheet with a fine effort from distance and after McGilligan had knocked over a free from the halfway line Mullan scored again. A free from Dermot Begley stopped the rot for Tyrone before a long range Cormac O Doherty free brought the first half scoring to a close. 

Whatever was said to Tyrone at the break certainly had the desired affect as they reappeared for the second period totally transformed. The superb Begley had the opening three scores of the half and when midfielder Conor Grogan followed suit with a brilliant score from distance it was very much game on.

Mullan traded passes with Segdae Melaugh to open Derry’s second half account before Tyrone grabbed a goal. A long delivery in from Chris Kearns was brilliantly caught by team Captain Lorcan Devlin who fired to the Derry net past keeper Oisin O Doherty. A free from Sean Duffin then left it a one point game.

Derry though then got a much needed boost when centre half forward O Doherty blasted to the bottom left hand corner of the net after he had been fouled himself. Two mammoth frees from centre half back Begley kept Tyrone in touch but Derry responded with quality scores from Mullan and full back Mark Craig. 

A Duffin free closed the gap before we’ll taken points from Lorcan Devlin and Aidan Kelly left the minimum between the sides again. O Doherty and Mullan pushed the gap out to three again but then Tyrone drew level when pressure up front forced Derry into a mistake and Sean Og Grogan grabbed a goal.

Tyrone were on a high at this stage and they moved two clear when Duffin and Lorcan Devlin both scored. Mullan and Grogan swapped points before the former left it all square. As the contest entered injury time Derry substitute Padraig Neilis edged his side in front with a superb effort from out on the left wing but Tyrone weren’t to be denied with Duffin earning them a draw right at the end. A disappointing result for Derry who hit ten wides over the seventy odd minutes.

Tyrone- Liam Dunphy, Sean Og Grogan, Ruairi Devlin, Fionn Devlin, Dean Rafferty  Dermot Begley, Conal Devlin, Chris Kearns, Conor Grogan, Ruairi Slane, Sean Duffin, Bryan McGurk, Aidan Kelly, Rory Weir, Lorcan Devlin. Subs – T Mullin for Weir, J Ferguson for F Devlin

Derry- Oisin O Doherty, Sean Francis Quinn, Mark Craig , Daire Kelly, Sean Cassidy, Meehaul McGrath  Eamon Conway, Paddy Kelly  Darragh McGilligan, Cormac O Doherty, James Friel  Segdae Melaugh, John Mullan, Paul Cleary. Subs – R Mullan for Quinn, E Cassidy for Conway, C O Kane for Friel, P Neilis for Melaugh

Tyrone scorers – Dermot Begley 0-6, Lorcan Devlin 1-3, Sean Og Grogan 1-2, Sean Duffin 0-4, Aidan Kelly 0-2, Fionn Devlin 0-1, Conor Grogan 0-1, Ruairi Slane 0-1

Derry scorers; John Mullan 1-7, Cormac O Doherty 1-3, Richie Mullan 0-2, Darragh McGilligan 0-2, Mark Craig 0-1, Eamon Conway 0-1, Paddy Kelly 0-1, James Friel 0-1, Paul Cleary 0-1, Padraig Neilis 0-1



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