The Tipperary senior football championship finally came to a conclusion yesterday when Loughmore-Castleiney defeated Cahir for their 13th title.
Over 1,700 spectators braved the arctic conditions at Leahy Park in Cashel to watch Loughmore hold on for victory after failing to score for the entire second-half.
The winners made a scorching start which saw them race into a 0-7 to nothing lead before Dean Lonergan opened Cahir's account in the 23rd minute. Loughmore were unlucky not to goal when John McGrath's chance was tipped over by Brian Enright in the Cahir goal, but the damage was well and truly done by half-time as Noel McGrath's second point moved the leaders eight clear.
Paddy O'Flaherty's well-executed goal on the eve of half-time was badly required for Cahir but they'd only manage a further 1-1 in the second-half.
That proved just enough for Loughmore after having lost their scoring touch, as veteran captain David Kennedy, an All-Ireland winner with Tipperary's senior hurlers in 2001, collecting the cup on the team's behalf.
Loughmore-Castleiney: D Brennan; J Meagher, W Eviston, T McGrath; T King, C McGrath, J Ryan; N McGrath (0-2), D Kennedy; A McGrath, C Hennessy, L Treacy (0-2f); L McGrath, E Sweeney (0-1), J McGrath (0-4, 2f). Subs: Eamonn Connolly for L McGrath (b/c 9), D Bourke for Treacy (43mins), J Hennessy for N McGrath (b/c , 60+1).
Cahir: B Enright; M O'Connor, G Halley, C Casey; S O'Connor, A Casey, E Donaghy; E Kendrick, L Casey; B Hickey, P O'Flaherty (1-0), S Murphy; P Whelan, D Lonergan (1-2, 0-1f), J McGrath. Subs: D Tarrant for Whelan (b/c ,14mins), T O'Gorman for S O'Connor (53), N McKenna for C Casey (b/c, 56).
Referee: Sean Lonergan