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Tompkins on Haven shootout win: “you’re just kicking every ball… the ‘Haven means so much”

Tompkins talks about Castlehaven’s penalty-shootout win over St Finbarr’s, and not knowing when the final against Nemo Rangers will be played

Castlehaven clubman Larry Tompkins on the club’s penalty-shootout win over St Finbarr’s, and not knowing when the final against Nemo Rangers will be played.

Larry Tompkins says he was kicking every ball as Castlehaven beat St Finbarr’s in a penalty shootout to qualify for the Cork SFC final.

Sunday’s clash with the Barrs finished 1-13 apiece after extra time and it took a sudden-death spot-kick from Mark Collins to secure victory.

Tompkins, who captained Castlehaven to their maiden senior title in 1989 against the same opposition, had to watch the game via a stream and was gripped by the action.

“I was watching it on a screen on my own, and look, you’re just playing every ball and kicking and passing every ball,” Tompkins explains.

“You’re telling guys on the field ‘why did you do that, or why did you get dispossessed?’.

“Look, the Haven means so much to me and when you put on that jersey… I really enjoyed my memories playing with the Haven and I’m the same now watching. I’m kicking every ball.

“It’s a crazy situation,” he adds of the penalty shootout. “The Haven overall felt that they got out of jail a little bit. 

“I felt that the Barrs dominated periods of that game and didn’t really convert.

“I think the Haven would have been delighted to get through it but a bizarre sanitation when it came to a penalty situation. 

“The pressure was on and somebody was going to be the villain. 

“We were lucky that when it came to sudden death, we had the coolness of Mark Collins to step up and convert the one that really mattered. Very unusual circumstances.

“It’s probably not a fair way but under the circumstances we understand it because games have to be finished. It was bizarre.”

Towards the end of the game, Cork forward Brian Hurley scored an exceptional point from the sideline for the Haven.

“It was reminiscent of the great Maurice Fitzgerald when he scored down in Thurles against Dublin. 

“The outside of the foot, an incredible score, and Brian is capable of those things. 

“It’s great to see him back at that level of performance because he’s been through the mill and had two major surgeries on his hamstring. 

“It was brilliant to see him back, hopefully he keeps getting better as each game goes. 

“What a point, what a score, and Brian has that kind of class.”

The Haven will play Nemo Rangers in the Cork final, though not refixed date has been set at this time.

Larry Tompkins’ autobiography, ‘Believe’, is available now in all good book shops and online.
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