St. Martin's earn first Wexford SHC title

St. Martin's 1-13 Oulart The Ballagh 1-08, Wexford Park

St. Martin's upset the form book to claim their first Wexford SHC title since 1999 at Wexford Park this afternoon, courtesy of a five-point win over Oulart the Ballagh.

Reigning champions Oulart were aiming for a fourth county win in five years but they were undone by a determined St. Martin's outfit, who showed the great hunger on the day.

Kevin Ryan's charges got their tactics just right, carving out the win with Ciaran Lyng's quick dash from Australia following his International Rules exploits working out as he joined his club colleagues to celebrate.

Playing against the wind in the opening half, St. Martin's were nervous early on and hit three quick wides.

Nonetheless, points from Eoin Quigley and Diarmuid 'Gizzy' Lyng (0-02) ensured a 0-03 to 0-01 lead for St. Martin's midway through the first half, with Nicky Kirwan notching Oulart's lone score.

With the momentum firmly with St. Martin's at this stage, it did not take long for them to produce a goal.

Philip Murphy burst through the heart of the Oulart defence, advancing past defender Barry Kehoe, to kick to ball to the net and propel his side into a 1-03 to 0-02 lead.

St. Martin's enjoyed the lion's share of possession during the opening half. Their wides tally of six (by the 19th minute) was a worry but a successful '65' from Lyng did open up a five-point gap.

Oulart then had a goal chance with Rory Jacob sending the ball in towards a crowded goalmouth, where he picked out Nicky Kirwan.

However, Kirwan fell to the ground and was dispossessed.

With St. Martin's defending strongly, Oulart would have to wait until the second half for their goal.

The margin was widened to eight points before Oulart piled on the pressure in the second half.

The champions hurled well, but their efforts were not enough as Martin's secured only their second ever Wexford SHC success with Daithi Hayes lifting the cup after the game.

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