Newcastle West who were crowned Intermediate hurling champions 2020 in the Gaelic Grounds on Sunday last. – Photo George Daly. – County Limerick Intermediate Hurling Final

Intermediate Hurling Championship Final
NA PIARSAIGH……………………………………………..……..……1-22
After extra time, 1-15 to 1-15 after 60 minutes
Na Piarsaigh’s attempt to rewrite history by adding the county intermediate title to the senior crown captured the evening before fell apart right at the end of extra time as Newcastlewest finally made it into the second tier of hurling after a titanic struggle on Sunday in the Gaelic Grounds.
Leading through most of normal time, the winners were suckered by an equalising injury-time free and were left chasing the equaliser through the two tit-for-tat added periods before finally plundering the winner.
Like any ding-dong contest, free-takers played a deciding role and, while they missed a chance or two at vital moments, Diarmuid Moran Kelly and James Daly kept their nerve to end up with matching tallies of 1-11. However, when push came to shove, the Newcastle man had that extra bit of support up front needed to close out the result.
Mike McMahon opened the scoring straight from the throw-in and only Evan Condon’s save  off Eoin Hurley prevented the Magpies from opening a four-point lead. However, they rode their luck at the other end when Kevin Ryan scorched inches wide before Daly’s ‘65’ and free swung the advantage in the city direction.
Mark Kelly immediately replied and, when the puckout was intercepted, Moran Kelly collected the pass and rifled to the net. Tails up, he then added a point and, after Keith Dempsey’s response, Bryan Nix and Moran Kelly’s free stretched the gap to five.
The burst halted with Ryan’s point on the water break and three Newcastle wides were followed by Dónal Ó Conaill’s long strike being met by Moran Kelly’s free only for Daly to send over a ‘65’ and two frees. Coming up to the break, Moran Kelly punished a foul at the other end before Kevin Daly struck back to reduce Newcastle’s lead to 1-7 to 0-9.
The Northsiders saw most of the possession on the restart but, apart from Daly’s free, couldn’t find the target as Bryan Nix and Brian Foley collected long clearances to score. Daly replied with a free but the Magpies were building up momentum with two Moran Kelly frees and Hurley stretching their lead to four as play stopped for water.
When Moran Kelly sent over a free after he’d swapped one with Daly’s ‘65’, it was looking good for Newcastle but disaster struck when Daly’s free trickled to the net off an attempted block on the goal line. He then added a free and, as the clock slipped into the red, Moran Kelly eased Magpie pressures with a majestic strike from a tight angle but Dempsey struck after collecting the puckout before Daly punished a foul drawn in the next action to tie the score at 1-15
Moran Kelly opened the first extra period but Pat Gleeson and Emmett McEvoy struck back to give Na Piarsaigh the lead for the first time since the opening minutes. Moran Kelly’s free equalised as did McMahon in response to Evan Gilvarry, Hurley to Ryan and Moran Kelly’s free to Gilvarry before the teams changed ends at 1-20 apiece.
Scoring slowed down before Mark Kelly edged the Magpies ahead, Kieran Daly then levelled, tired legs were failing to convert opportunities before Bryan Nix gave Newcastle hope only for Daly to nullify with a free but in time added on to added time, Eoin Hurley restored their
lead and Aaron McCarthy made sure before Mike Sexton’s whistle finally blew.
Scorers: Newcastlewest: Diarmuid Moran Kelly 1-11 (0-9 frees); Mike McMahon (1 free), Eoin Hurley, Bryan Nix 0-3 each; Mark Kelly 0-2; Brian Foley, Aaron McCarthy 0-1 each; Na Piarsaigh: James Daly 1-11 (1-7 frees, 0-3 ‘65’s); Keith Dempsey, Kevin Ryan, Evan Gilvarry 0-2 each; Dónall Ó Conaill, Kevin Daly, Pat Gleeson, Emmett McEvoy, Kieran Daly 0-1 each.
Newcastlewest: Mike Quilligan; Mike Mulcahy, Maurice Murphy, Colm Foley; Séamus Hurley, Shaun Browne, Niall Enright; Timmy Nix, Mark Kelly; Eoin Hurley, Mike McMahon, Stephen Nix; Bryan Nix, Brian Foley, Diarmuid Moran Kelly.
Subs: James Kelly for Mike Mulcahy (38), Leigh Woulfe for Timmy Nix (46), Evan McMahon for Stephen Nix (extra time), Michael Cremin for Brian Foley (half-time extra time), Aaron McCarthy for Mark Kelly (73), Ruadhan O’Connor for Maurice Murphy (73).
Na Piarsaigh: Evan Condon; Conor Richardson, Gearóid Synott, Pádraig Heaney; Evan O’Brien, Emmett McEvoy, Dónall Ó Conaill; Dean McLoughlin, Pat Gleeson; Keith Dempsey, Kevin Daly, Seán Long; Dylan Cronin, Kevin Ryan, James Daly.
Subs: Evan Gilvarry for Seán Long (46), Kieran Daly for Dylan Cronin (46), Luke O’Sullivan
for Dean McLoughlin (56), Seán Long for Emmett McEvoy (80).
Referee: Mike Sexton, Bruree.