Without scoring in last half an hour, Conor Fogarty inspired Érin's Own upset Kilkenny apple cart 1 week ago

Without scoring in last half an hour, Conor Fogarty inspired Érin's Own upset Kilkenny apple cart

Erin's Own, Castlecomer were written off by no-one bar the bookies coming into Saturday's Kilkenny SHC quarter final against Dicksboro.

3/1 on a dreary day in Nowlan Park. The north Kilkenny men were always worth a nibble.

Having ran Ballyhale closer than close last year, the pedigree is clear. The 'Comer lads mean even stricter business this time around.

They let us know all about it a fortnight ago. Underdogs then too, last year's county finalists Bennettsbridge were fancied to dump them into relegation trouble.

Comer hadn't read the script. They steamrolled the Bridge and had 12 points to spare by the end of it. Dicksboro will have known they were in for a test here.

Especially given the woeful conditions Noreside. That's why Richie Power, on RTÉ punditry duty, tipped them to upset the apple cart.

"They absolutely love defending, they pride themselves on defence, work-rate, all of that, these conditions will suit them down to the ground," said the Carrickshock man pre-game.

Power had 20:20 vision. Liam Dowling's men, with their midfielder James Mullins making light work of the atrocious weather, hit 0-4 from play as they blazed into a 0-5 to 0-0 lead.

This really was outstanding shooting from the midfielder. The conditions couldn't really have been any worse for hurling with grips slippy and the ball heavy, but this fella was unperturbed.

"It was a real case of Comer coming off a championship game, and Dicksboro not," said Power.

Comer's Bennettsbridge test had stood them in good stead. Dicksboro who in contrast hadn't played championship in three weeks, looked ring-rusty.

They were always going to bite back at some stage though. Sprightly half forward Aidan Nolan had a huge part to play in that. The tall, rangy half forward was unstoppable with his blend of speed and skill and he dragged the 'Boro back into the game.

But 'Comer just wouldn't take no for an answer. Led like lions by the inspirational Conor Fogarty who's goaled long range free would prove crucial, they dogged and drove themselves home through sheer work-rate and physicality. Literally. Leading by 1-8 to 0-2 after 32 minutes, they wouldn't be aided by another score from then until the final whistle.

"Nobody will want to meet them now," said Power after their 1-8 to 1-6 win.

There's no doubt about that.

Elsewhere in Kilkenny, O'Loughlin Gaels and Mullinavat couldn't be separated in the other quarter final. 0-12 0-12 was the final score there in a game where the conditions took their toll. Paddy Deegan for O'Loughlins and Michael Malone for Mullinavat still stood out though.

RTÉ's decision to track club games across Ireland is paying off. The scores weren't in abundance but the entertainment was undebatable.