The sun beats down on Blunden Drive as we enter the ground for this
Division 3 encounter with Sylvesters, what a glorious morning for a game of
hurling. As we stroll pitch-ward I’m thinking I maybe suffering a touch of
heatstroke, I wipe my bleary eyes but no, they don’t deceive me, we
actually have substitutes, and not just one – a whole three of them. What a
luxury !!!

The game throws in and O’Tooles are fast out of the blocks with a quickly
taken goal to open their account. The line applauds approvingly but in
truth our hands remain pocketed for much of the half as Sylvesters assert
their dominance, aided by a moderate breeze. A great half from the visitors
sees them comfortably leading 1:10 to 1:2 at half time. Sylvesters look the
hungrier of the sides and the O’Tooles management certainly have their work
cut out for them at half time.

The second half throws in and the O’Tooles mindset looks to have changed.
Three excellent points and the visitors are being slowly reeled in. The
fightback is derailed however, when a mishit point attempt drops just
outside the square and is somehow deflected into the top corner of the
O’Tooles net. The teams trade point for point midway through the half with
Sylvesters keeping their opponents comfortably at arms length. O’Tooles
will not go quietly though and rally late in the half with two goals to
make Sylvesters a little edgy. They recover their composure with a goal of
their own and then their keeper closes out the game with a brilliant save
followed by a great catch under pressure a couple of yards from goal.

Sylvesters win 3:17 to 3:13 and thoroughly deserved it on the day.