Kilruane MacDonaghs paid a touching tribute to the late Dillon Quirke following their Tipperary Senior hurling final replay victory over Kiladangan.
Dillon Quirke died in August after he collapsed during a championship game for Clonulty/Rossmore against Kilruane, aged just 24.
Following the full-time whistle that saw Kilruane MacDonaghs run out 2-20 to 1-16 winners, the former Tipperary hurler was at the front of the minds of Kilruane MacDonaghs, with the newly crowned champions raising a red helmet where he died at Sample Stadium.
It was an extremely classy and thoughtful touch by Kilruane MacDonaghs, which was admired not just in Tipperary, but across the GAA community.
Dillon Quirke in Kilruane's thoughts all the way. Sheer class pic.twitter.com/GfmDd9a9bT
— Shane Brophy (@BrophShane) October 30, 2022
Dillon Quirke's iconic red helmet raised high in Semple Stadium again today.... Kilruane MacDonaghs Tipperary Senior Hurling Champions 2022, Dillon is forever in their hearts... @MacDonaghsGAA @ClonRossGAA pic.twitter.com/WjFmkjLPCP
— Sports Focus Photography (@SportsFocusIe) October 30, 2022
"We had a few words here where Dillon lay. We had our picture taken & we raised the red helmets for Dillon as well. Thats what this club is all about.." @MacDonaghsGAA manager Liam O Kelly speaking to me about today, that night against Conoulty & honouring Dillon Quirke 🙌 pic.twitter.com/rp3K0kzZfd
— Stephen Gleeson (@StephenGleeson_) October 30, 2022
After last weekend’s thrilling 2-18 to 1-21 draw, there was little to separate the sides once again as they delivered yet another brilliant final in a great advertisement for Tipperary hurling.
Kildangan started the stronger of the two sides as they raced into a quick three point lead, It would have been more but Kilruane MacDonaghs goalkeeper Paudi Williams made an excellent save from his opposite number Barry Hogan from the penalty spot.
Kildangen had their goal 11 minutes later though Tom O’Meara as they finished the first half the stronger of the two sides to give themselves a 1-9 to 0-7 lead at the interval.
However, Kilruane MacDonaghs came out in the second half a much improved side, scoring from their first six shots in the second half, and took the lead through Cian Darcy’s brilliant side line cut, who was instrumental to their comeback victory.
It would be Darcy’s goals that would make the difference between the two sides. His first goal in the 48th minute, with his second smashed into the net to seal a historic victory for Kilruane MacDonaghs on an emotional day for Tipperary hurling.