Dundalk 5 Shamrock Rovers 1
Matthew Tipton scored a hat-trick as Dundalk blew the title race open again with this rousing win to end Shamrock Rovers' 17-match unbeaten run and reduce their lead at the top to four points.
Rovers didn’t avoid controversy in starting Neale Fenn who’d “retired” form Dundalk before suddenly signing for the Dubliners in July.
But it was Dundalk who rose to the challenge to take a third minute lead when Tom Miller got on the end of Ross Gaynor’s free-kick into the to beat Alan Mannus with a glancing header.
Faz Kuduzovic added a second goal on 17 minutes when turning home Dean Bennett's free-kick.
Tipton got his first on 27 minutes before, remarkably, adding his second and Dundalk's fourth on the blow of half time.
Gary Twigg pulled a goal back for Rovers on the hour mark, but Tipton completed his hat-trick on 82 minutes.