All-Ireland SFC Round 3 Qualifier
Derry 1-09 Kildare 2-17
Kildare put Derry to the sword with a brilliant second half effort at Celtic Park to confirm that their rehabilitation through the qualifier route is now at a very advanced stage.
The home team got off to a sensational start with that goal from Raymond Wilkinson. The Ballinderry man latched onto a break from Eoin Bradley’s free and sent a thunderous first time shot to the roof of the net, the ball actually getting stuck in the rigging such was the ferocity of the kick.
The hosts were five points up by the eighth minute but Kildare hit back with seven points in a row, five of which came from the boot of Johnny Doyle.
Man of the match Eamon Callaghan and Emmet Bolton supplemented their captain’s efforts with two fine scores from play.
Declan Mullan ended a 21 minute drought, capitalising on a poor clearance out of the Kildare defence and Eoin Bradley brought the sides level but Pádraig O’Neill responded with a booming effort to give Kildare a 0-8 to 1-4 interval lead.
Doyle stretched the Lilies’ advantage from a free soon after the restart but with the wind at their backs, Derry were level by the 43rd minute, Mark Lynch slotting a free and Kielt arcing over a tremendous point after a direct run.
It was at this juncture that Kildare found another gear and Derry were unable to respond.
The visitors totted up five points from play, a run started by a brilliant Callaghan point after a sweet dummy. O’Neill and substitute Eoghan O’Flaherty notched up further scores, and Hugh McGrillen fisted over, before Callaghan clipped over another after a sumptuous pass by O’Neill.
That put seven points between the sides and Derry never looked like cutting the deficit.
The game was put to bed in the 61st minute when Callaghan challenged for a high ball delivered by the heroic Flynn and beat Derry goalkeeper, Barry Gillis. He gathered the break and finished to the net from close range.
Alan Smith profited from good work by David Whyte and Ken Donnelly to slip inside and lash to the net three minutes from time and that was that.
Kildare: S McCormack; P Kelly, H McGrillen 0-1, A Mac Lochlainn; B Flanagan, M O’Flaherty, E Bolton 0-1, B Flanagan; D Flynn, D Earley; E Callaghan 1-4, J Doyle 0-8(6fs), P O’Neill 0-2; J Kavanagh, T O’Connor, R Sweeney. Subs: A Smith 1-0 for O’Connor inj (9); E O’Flaherty 0-1 for Sweeney (51); D Whyte for Flanagan (61); K Donnelly for Kavanagh (65)
Derry: B Gillis; B Óg McAlary, K McGuckin, D McBride; B McGoldrick, G O’Kane, C Kielt; J Diver, E Muldoon 0-1(45); C McKeever, J Kielt 0-2(fs), D Mullan 0-1; E Bradley 0-3, M Lynch 0-2(fs), R Wilkinson 1-0. Subs: Patsy Bradley for C Kielt (ht); SL McGoldrick for Wilkinson (53); R Convery for Diver (56); M Craig for McKeever (60)
Referee: Marty Duffy (Sligo)