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Remember the Game: Camross and Ballypickas do battle in 2003 Junior hurling final

A couple of weeks ago, Ballypickas came away from O’Moore Park celebrating a tremendous win in the Junior ‘A’ hurling final after coming back from six points down midway through the second half.

It was their first success in the grade in over 20 years and they had endured heartache on numerous occasions. Our archives from this weekend in 2003 have dug up the junior final that year – one that Camross got the better of Ballypickas in on a scoreline of 2-9 to 0-5.

It was a grizzled Camross team – one that included PJ Cuddy and Joe Dollard in their full-forward line, with their first sub introduced a 15-year-old Zane Keenan.

As is the way with Ballypickas over the years, their team included a collection of players who played football with various clubs – with Spink, Ballyroan and St Joseph’s all represented on their starting team.

And two of their players were All Ireland champions only a couple of weeks previously with the Laois minor footballers – Cathal Fleming and Michael Tierney.

As Ballypickas look forward to a league final today and Camross reflect on a great year of hurling, Alf Harvey’s pictures bring back to life a county final from 14 years ago.

The teams for the record were:

CAMROSS: James Delaney; Des Kilmartin, Tommy Delaney, Billy Phelan; Martin Gaughan, Stephen Mortimer, Tony Doran; Fintan Phelan, Brendan O’Sullivan; PJ Dooley, Noel Cuddy, Michael Dooley; Gareth Cuddy, PJ Cuddy, Joe Dollard. Subs: Zane Keenan, Niall Cuddy, AJ Cuddy, Owen Doran.

BALLYPICKAS: Ray Dalton; Cathal Gorman; John O’Dea, Anthony Carter; Brian Lalor, Brendan Kehoe, Michael McEvoy; Joe Miller, Darragh Phelan; Noel Delaney, Joe McEvoy, Cathal Fleming; Paul Brennan, Michael Fitzpatrick, Paddy O’Brien. Subs: Jim Gee, Michael Tierney, Eamon Carter, Liam Phelan, Murty McWey.

REFEREE: Jimmy Fitzpatrick (Kilcotton)

SEE ALSO – After a wait of over 100 days, Ballypickas and Mountmellick to clash in hurling league final


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Steven Miller is owner and managing editor of LaoisToday.ie. From Laois, Steven studied Journalism in DCU and has 14 years experience in the media, almost 10 of those in an editorial role. Husband of Emily, father of William and Lillian, he's happiest when he's telling stories or kicking a point.