The Harps senior hurlers, playing for the first time under new manager David Cuddy, got off to a winning start in the opening round of the Palmer Cup. Played in Durrow on a heavy sod, our opponents Trumera/Kyle were a game side but the gap between Senior A and Senior B teams eventually told as The Harps ran out nine point winners; 2-14 to 0-11.
The opening half saw numerous frees from both sides converted as the playing conditions resulted in a lot of rucks and scraps for the ball. Michael Lanigan was flawless on free-taking duty, while Greg Aylward shot a fine point from play. Trumera/Kyle were struggling in open play, but they too were hitting the frees well to keep them in contention. The gap began to widen however, and when Shane Donoghue ghosted in behind the Trumera/Kyle defence and rifled the sliotar to the net The Harps finally had breathing space. Pat Walsh tagged on a good point from play before Donoghue again found space in attack to score goal number two. The sides traded points just before the break to leave the half time score at The Harps 2-09 Trumera/Kyle 0-04.
The second half continued in a similar fashion with both teams main source of scores coming from placed balls. Both sides introduced new players into the fray as the match went on and the effort from both sets of players was commendable for a match in February.
A positive start then for The Harps, but the players and management alike will be well aware that a lot of the hard work still has to be done.
Next weekend sees The Harps up against Abbeyleix in the second round of the Palmer Cup.
The Harps: 1.Peter Walsh; 2.Tommy Moore; 3.Pakie Flynn; 4.Aaron Dunne; 5.John Prior; 6.Conor Dunne; 7.Barry Dunne; 8.Conor Brophy; 9.Kieran Freeman; 10.Shane Donoghue; 11.Richie Saunders; 12.Pat Walsh; 13.Greg Aylward; 14.Mick Lanigan; 15.Conor Deegan.
Subs used: Shane Fitzpatrick, Ciaran Costigan, John Dunne, Cathal Phelan.