Contributed by: Matthew Guthrie
The Leeside Lions are the 2005 ARFLI Premiers after a toughly contested Grand Final with the Dublin Demons in Kilkenny last Saturday. The Lions completed a clean sweep of all major honours offered by the ARFLI in 2005, also winning the pre-season Super 10s and the leading goalkicker award.
Both teams had strong representatives on the Irish team for the upcoming International Cup – the Lions leading the way with nine and the Demons with four. But thoughts of Australia were far from the minds of the assembled players prior to the kick off on Saturday. The aim of both teams was to win the John ‘Locke’ O’Sullivan Cup.
From the first ball up the game was intense, the hits hard and the defences mean – both teams knew early on, they were in a game. The Lions went into the first break ahead by 5 pts to 3pts. With both defences playing so well it seemed destined to be a low scoring grand final.
The Lions came to life early in the second quarter with domination from the center square and around the rucks and good service into the forward line. The Demons were held scoreless for the half and the Lions led 2 goals 8 behinds (20 pts) to 3 pts.
The third quarter was marked by hard tackling and fast passing from both sides but throughout the Lions were able to maintain the 20 odd point gap that had earlier been established.
As the teams faced into the final quarter the Demons knew that one last massive effort was required to wrestle the lead from the Lions stranglehold. As the quarter progressed the life began to slowly pass from the Demons challenge as bodies that had been battered all day grew weary, but in true Demons spirit they battled to the bitter end.
The final whistle saw scenes of jubilation from the Lions bench and supporters and despondence and despair on the Demons bench. Another grand final slips by the Dublin Demons football club and another runner up medal to add to the collection.
Best on ground went to Ian O’Sullivan while Alan Coomey the Lion’s captain received the golden boot for his 19 goals during the season. As he received the cup on behalf of the team Alan paid tribute to the work put in by all the team members during the year.
Leeside Lions 7 17 (59)
Dublin Demons 3 9 (27)
For a full story of the Grand Final go to ARFLI web site article.
World Footy News