Monkstown claim dramatic Irish Cup win
Updated: Sunday, 24 Mar 2013 19:07
Monkstown ended their 99-year wait for Irish Senior Cup glory, finally breaking their hoodoo in the competition in the most thrilling of finals as Andy Ewington cemented his cult status at the South Dublin club in a 5-4 win against Pembroke.
For the second time this weekend, he netted a silver goal winner, this time putting an end to Pembroke’s title hopes with the third goal in the first period of extra time.
Normal time had ended 3-3 in a thrill-a-minute tussle that Monkstown shaded on points and had the chances to put the game to bed.
They led 2-0 after Davy Carson’s near post touch to Andrew Ward’s and Ewington’s drag-flick.
Alan Sothern, though, tied up matters with a set-piece double, the first from the penalty spot and then directly from a short corner.
Ewington, though, restored the lead with his fifth goal of the weekend in the second half only for Sothern to supply an exquisite finish to a sublime move via Ronan Flannery and George Dagg with ten minutes left.
Town had the better chances down the final stretch, though, especially when they were awarded a penalty stroke. The impeccable Mark Ingram saved from Gareth Watkins, though, while Ward was within inches of turning in a back post chance soon after.
In between times, the post was rattled three times with Ewington cracking the bar, Sothern smacking the post, a feat that Ward also managed.
Into extra-time, the rollercoaster continued with Ward putting his side in front for a fourth time, taking is time to free the ball and flick over Ingram.
Just three minutes remained but there was time for Ronan Flannery to level once more, getting a near post touch to Mick O’Connor’s hopeful cross.
But Monkstown earned one last series of corners and Ewington made no mistake in devastatingly clinical fashion, whipping past the stick side of the Pembroke goalkeeper on the final hooter.
It broke of chain of three final losses in the past six years for Monkstown and they celebrated accordingly.
Gareth Watkins was part of each of those defeats but says his side learned the tough lessons and they helped his side over the finish line.
"What a game; so many highs, so many lows but the lads were absolutely fantastic, they kept their belief and kept going to the end," he said.
"You learn from each final and bank that feeling. Maybe it stood to us when every time Pembroke came back."
Pembroke: M Ingram, R Flannery, K Lynch, K Crawford, M Elliott, K Shimmins, M O’Connor, A Sothern, A Pritchard, D Kane, M Loughrey
Subs: G Dagg, P Conlon, S Furlong, B Grogan, D Molloy
Monkstown: D Fitzgerald, L Cole, N Dee, D Carson, A Ward, G Watkins, D Cole, S Cole, G Shaw, R Sykes, A Ewington
Subs: J Beirne, G Groves, G O’Halloran, R O’Moore, K Good
Umpires: K Bolger, W McCully