Ballinacourty and Rathgormack claimed first round wins in the Waterford SFC at Fraher Field this afternoon.
A late Cian Fagan goal helped Ballinacourty to a 1-11 to 1-6 victory over Clashmore Kinsalebeg.
Goalkeeper Aaron Beresford converted three second half frees for the winners. Veteran attacker Patrick Hurney also sent over three points. Courty were guilty of fourteen wides (seven in each half). "Blowing off the cobwebs is the best way of putting it," manager Pat Curran told WLR Sport.
Kian Kelly-Carey netted a consolation goal for Clashmore in injury time. Brian Lynch landed four frees while Luke Coughlan kicked two points from play.
Courty lined out minus Mark Ferncombe, Brian Looby, Tom Looby, Seanie Callaghan and Willie Beresford who are all on the injury list. Brian O'Halloran and Tadhg De Burca were unavailable for Clashmore.
County hurler Billy Power shot six points from play (three in each half) as fourteen man Rathgormack beat Kilrossanty 1-17 to 1-12. Jason Curry also raised six white flags (four from placed balls) for last year's runners-up.
Rathgormack raced five nil up after ten minutes with Billy Power and Jason Curry on target twice. On 13 minutes, Padraig Fitzgerald picked out Kilrossanty number eight Tommy Prendergast on the edge of the square. His close range blast was deflected over the bar by Liam Connolly. The speedy Alan Dunwoody closed the gap to two (0-5 to 0-3).
On 24 minutes, a defence splitting hand pass from Conor Murray found Willie Hahessy and he buried the ball past Paul Whyte. A curling effort from Murray made it 1-10 to 0-4. On 28 minutes, Kilrossanty were awarded a penalty for a foot block. Goalkeeper Paul Whyte sent Paudie Hunt the wrong way from the spot. Jason Curry's fourth point of the half gave Rathgormack a 1-11 to 1-4 advantage at the break.
Billy Power slotted three more singles in the third quarter. Donie Fitzgerald kicked the score of the weekend with the outside of his right boot from 45 metres. Murray's second point of the afternoon left Kenny Hassett's men ten points to the good with ten minutes left. The leaders then lost Stephen Curry to a second yellow card.
Kilrossanty fought until the final whistle. Dunwoody delivered an eye-catching score as the green and gold got the last five points of the game.
Rathgormack boss Kenny Hassett says that they want to make it back to the final after finishing runners-up in the past two seasons. "The goal is to get back there again and see where it takes us."