Tyrone 1-06 Dublin 1-09
Four players – two from either side – saw red at Healy Park as mass brawls and niggling fouls dogged a fiery NFL Division 1A clash between All-Ireland champions Tyrone and last year’s Leinster winners Dublin.
Of what football was played, St Vincent’s attacker Tomas Quinn emerged as the hero as he struck 1-07 – including a second half penalty – to guide the Dubs to a memorable win.
But the major talking points surrounded the sendings-off of Tyrone duo Collie Holmes and Stephen O’Neill, and Dublin’s Alan Brogan and Denis Bastick, who was played in his first league game, in front of 15,000 spectators at the Omagh venue.
Tipperary referee Paddy Russell seemed to lose control of the game in the second half as fisticuffs dominated the proceedings at both ends of the field.
Stephen O’Neill, having scored an opening point which later proved to be wide on television replays, slotted home a penalty, awarded for a foul on Raymie Mulgrew, to hand the Red Hands a 1-05 to 0-05 lead at the interval.
Quinn impressively hit all five of the Dublin points in the first half – the visitors were struggling to gain a foothold in midfield with Ciaran Whelan largely marked absent.
However, things turned sour for Tyrone in the second half – Peter Donnelly proved to be their only scorer in the second 35.
The early part of the half was delayed by a mass brawl that saw both Brogan and Holmes both receive straight red cards.
The game, now blighted by dust-ups, failed to settle down thereafter. Quinn coolly slotted his penalty kick home to ‘keeper Pascal McConnell’s right and Dublin held their nerve to pull off a heartening away victory.
Quinn pointed another free and Bryan Cullen and David Henry, the latter in injury-time, added overs for the visitors.
By that time, midfielder Bastick and O’Neill, who hit 1-02 in all, had received second yellow cards for separate incidents - leaving both sides to see out the game down to 13 men.