AIB Munster Club SHC Final – Thurles Sarsfields 1-21 DLS 1-16

Big guns fire super Sarsfields to promised land after battle royal

By Diarmuid O’Flynn for the Irish Examiner newspaper

Thurles Sarsfields (Tipperary) 1-21 De La Salle (Waterford) 1-16

Thurles Sarsfields captain Padraic Maher receiving the O’Neill Cup
from Munster GAA Chairman Sean Walsh
(Photo courtesy of George Hatchell)

The renowned Thurles Sarsfields club claimed their first Munster senior hurling club title at Páirc Uí Chaoimh yesterday and the manner in which they did it in befitted the honour of being one of the year’s most outstanding displays of pure hurling. Thrills and spills, tenacious tackling, ferocious defending, brilliant point-taking, a net-bursting goal each — the 2,433 who defied the pelting rain to make the journey to Cork got a game to remember. From the start this was always going to be a very different match to the 2010 Munster final when these same two sides again met in Cork. On that bitterly cold and forgettable day much of the pitch was frozen solid and De La Salle won a low-scoring error-fest 0-9 to 0-8 with Thurles shooting 17 wides. On this occasion, and despite all the recent rain, the Páirc Uí Chaoimh sod held up extremely well and two outstanding sides were able to fully display their wares.

Sars were fastest from the blocks and led 1-5 to 0-4 after 16 minutes, the goal coming in the fifth minute when veteran centre-forward Jim Corbett (no relation of Lar) was put through one-on-one on De La Salle keeper Stephen Brenner by a sublime Denis Maher pass. Already some of the Sars big guns were beginning to fire. Lar Corbett scored a fine point and was working hard all over the pitch, his inter-county colleague Pa Bourke was causing chaos on the edge of the square, while in the half-back line Michael Cahill was already beginning to shine and scored the first point of the game.

For De La Salle it was it was their own fledgling county star Jake Dillon doing all the damage and he got all those four points including a sideline beauty. In the second quarter De La Salle finally found their rhythm and though the Sars attack was still finding the target with some regularity (they would end the game with 13 different scorers), the Déise side were looking the better side as half-time approached. Twice within a couple of minutes Dillon almost goaled, first in the 20th minute when his rasper came back off the far post, was cleared and resulted in a Sars point at the other end, then two minutes later when his close-range shot shaved the crossbar, screamed just over. Finally however, in the 27th minute, they did break through. Powerful half-forward Paudie Nevin beat Padraic Maher for possession wide left, racing down on goal to give Patrick McCormack no chance with a rocketshot.

That goal was a major boost to the Waterford champions but it was followed by deflation, not by a Thurles score but by a straight red card for corner-forward John Keane. It seemed harsh for what seemed a harmless hit but it would have a huge impact. De La Salle trailed at the break by two points, 1-9 to 1-7, but, given Thurles’ hard-running game, their 14-man team would be made to work hard in the second half and pay a price in the final minutes in the energy-sapping conditions. Thus it proved.

Showing great skill and spirit De La Salle took the fight to Thurles immediately on the resumption, tied the game in the 36th minute on 1-12 each after a hat-trick of points, two of those from the ever-dangerous Dillon. Indeed they would have taken the lead a couple of minutes later but for a superb save by McCormack from Nevin, and subsequently they twice more created clear goal scoring opportunities only to squander both. They would pay a heavy price for that profligacy. Padraic Maher came thundering into the fray for Sars, corner-backs Stephen and David Maher were on top, Michael Cahill was doing a superb job on dangerman John Mullane and Denis Maher.

Padraic had some game and scored two big points but was involved in so much more and was the key to this win. The seventh cavalry also made an impact, veteran Redser O’Grady especially with his high fielding and two points, Richie Ruth with another as Thurles finished by far the stronger side. Rough justice on De La Salle but another fine win for Thurles Sars and finally, another big title, the Munster senior hurling championship, to add to their roll-leading 32 Tipperary crowns.

Scorers for Thurles Sarsfields: P Bourke 0-7 (2fs), L Corbett 0-3, J Corbett 1-0, M Gleeson, D Maher, G O’Grady 0-2 each, M Cahill, J Enright, M O’Brien, A McCormack, R Reid, 0-1 each.

Scorers for De La Salle: J Dillon 0-9 (5fs, 1 s/l), E Barrett 0-3, P Nevin 1-0, D Twomey, J Mullane, E Madigan, K Moran 0-1 each.

THURLES SARSFIELDS: P McCormack; S Maher, K O’Gorman, David Maher; D Kennedy, P Maher (c), M Cahill; J Enright, M Gleeson; Denis Maher, J Corbett, L Corbett; M O’Brien, P Bourke, A McCormack.

Subs for Thurles Sarsfields: R Ruth for O’Brien (36), G O’Grady for J Corbett (36), S Cahill for Gleeson (59), R Maher for S Maher (inj. 60+1).

DE LA SALLE: S Brenner; S Daniels, I Flynn, C Watt; B Phelan, K Moran (c) E Madigan; J Kennedy, E Barrett; P Nevin, J Mullane, J Dillon; D Greene, D Twomey, J Keane.

Subs for De La Salle: S McNulty for Greene (56).

Referee: S Hourigan (Limerick)


Thurles Sarsfields win first ever Munster title

Report from the web site


Thurles Sarsfields (Tipperary) 1-21 De La Salle (Waterford) 1-16

Thurles Sarsfields won their first ever Munster title on Sunday, defeating Waterford champions De La Salle by five points at Páirc Uí Chaoimh. In a compelling encounter in Cork, Thurles showed great hunger, unsurprisingly, given they were chasing their first ever title, and had just too much for De La Salle in the end. They led by two points after an excellent first half, and had stretched their lead to five by the end after a strong finish. Jim Corbett’s fourth minute goal gave them the perfect start, and had them 1-1 to 0-1 ahead early on. They had stretched this lead to five points by the 18th minute, with Pa Bourke, Johnny Enright, Michael Gleeson and Lar Corbett all getting on the scoreboard.

However, De La Salle finished the half very well and got right back into the game when Paudie Nevin blasted a shot to the net for them three minutes shy of half-time. That score left two points between the sides at the break, but De La Salle were dealt a serious blow before the end of the half when they had John Keane sent off. De La Salle made light of their numerical disadvantage by hitting three points without reply after the restart, and the second half remained very tight all the way through. However, Thurles managed to get themselves a couple of points ahead and they maintained this lead until the closing stages. A brilliant point from De La Salle talisman Kevin Moran put two between them with just over five minutes to go to set up a tense finish, but Thurles Sarsfields held their nerve well, with Richie Ruth and Ger ‘Redser’ O’Grady knocking over points for them before the finish to seal a famous win.

Next Round – the winners play the Leinster Club Senior Hurling Champions on February 9th 2013

Contact Munster GAA PRO Ed Donnelly at for more information

For the Record

Thurles Sarsfields (Tipperary) De La Salle
Number of Munster Club Senior Hurling titles 0 2
Last Munster Club
Senior Hurling Title
N/A 2010
Number of Munster Club Senior Hurling titles
(by County)
11 5
Last Munster Club
Senior Hurling Title
(by County)
(Loughmore-Castleiney, Tipperary 1-6
Tulla, Clare 0-7)
(De La Salle, Waterford 0-9 Thurles Sarsfields, Tipperary 0-8)
Munster Club Senior Hurling Championship Record since 2000 for each county’s representative Played – 25
Won – 14
Lost –  9
Drawn – 2
Played – 27
Won – 18
Lost –  8
Drawn – 1
Last meeting in the Munster Club Senior Hurling Championship involving participating county representatives November 28th 2010 at Pairc Ui Chaoimh
(Munster Club Final)
De La Salle (Waterford) 0-9 Thurles Sarsfields (Tipperary) 0-8

Munster GAA HURLING Club Senior Championship 2012


Sunday October 28th

@ Kilmallock                         Thurles Sarsfields (Tipperary) 2-12 Kilmallock (Limerick) 0-15

Sunday November 11th

@ Sixmilebridge           De La Salle (Waterford) 1-10 Newmarket-on-Fergus (Clare) 0-10


@ Semple Stadium      Thurles Sarsfields (Tipperary) 2-20 Sarsfields (Cork) 2-15


Sunday November 25th (Replay date – Saturday December 1st)

@ Pairc Ui Chaoimh      De La Salle (Waterford) v Thurles Sarsfields (Tipperary) 2:00pm

Odds and Ends

The victory of Thurles Sarsfields over Sarsfields (Cork) snapped an 8 match streak of victories for the travelling team in the Munster Club Senior Hurling Championship over the past 3 seasons.

De La Salle (Waterford) have never lost a match in the Munster Club Senior Hurling Championship. In their five matches to date, they have only scored two goals in 260 minutes of action. De La Salle have won their five matches by a total of nine points, winning the Munster titles of 2008 and 2010.

Thurles Sarsfields won their fourth County title in Tipperary since last 2005 last month to qualify for the Munster Club Championship. Thurles Sarsfields record in Munster since 2005 sees them with four wins (over Kilmallock, Limerick twice, Sarsfields, Cork and Lixnaw, Kerry). They also have three defeats in that period, on each occasion losing to the eventual Munster champion (Newtownshandrum, Cork twice and De La Salle, Waterford).

Tipperary hold the record for the number of clubs that have won the Munster title, with eight different clubs all claiming provincial victories on behalf of the county (Carrick Davins, Roscrea, Moycarkey-Borris, Kilruane MacDonaghs, Borris-Ileigh, Cashel King Cormacs, Toomevara and Loughmore-Castleiney). Victory for Thurles Sarsfields in the 2012 Munster Final would increase that number to nine.

Of the 5 participating counties in this year’s Munster Club Senior Hurling Championship, Waterford have the best record since 2000 with 18 victories and 1 draw out of 27 matches played. Tipperary has the next best record with 14 wins and 2 draws out of 25 games.

The Munster Club Senior Hurling Championship is very competitive with only one score separating the champions and runner-up in each final from 2004 through 2011 (drawn match).

Munster GAA Club HURLING Senior Championship Roll Of Honour

Cork (17) – 1964, 1965, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1983, 1987, 2003, 2005, 2009

Tipperary (11) – 1966, 1969, 1970, 1982, 1985, 1986, 1991, 1993, 2004, 2006, 2007

Clare (9) – 1967, 1968, 1984, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000

Limerick (6) – 1988, 1989, 1990, 1992, 1994, 2011

Waterford (5) – 1981, 2001, 2002, 2008, 2010

Munster GAA Club HURLING Senior Championship – List of Winning Teams

Visit the Munster GAA web site History section to view the complete list of each winning team since the competition began 1888 –

All Ireland GAA Club HURLING Senior Championship

In the Club Senior Hurling All Ireland Roll of Honour, Cork clubs have won 9 titles followed by Tipperary with 3 and Clare with 2. Galway lead the roll of honour with 11 club titles followed by Kilkenny clubs with 10.

Munster Club Senior HURLING Cup

Club Championship Senior Hurling Cup – O’Neill Cup

Presented by Sarsfields Club, Cork, in 1972 to commemorate Billy O’Neill who founded their club in 1903.