Ulster and Connacht to meet in Interprovincial football final

Ulster and Connacht to meet in Interprovincial football final

Ulster and Connacht overcame Leinster and Munster respectively this afternoon to book their places in the M Donnelly Interprovincial Football Final next Sunday.

A brace of Michael Murphy frees deep into second half extra-time earned Ulster a place in the decider following a 2-26 to 3-21 win over Leinster after extra-time, at Páirc Tailteann, Navan.

The Donegal ace claimed eight points in this high octane encounter, played in front of 200 spectators.

This game produced end-to-end football, with the sides level at 1-20 to 2-17 at the end of normal time, with a late point from Monaghan's Conor McManus forcing extra-time.

Earlier, it was Ulster who got this game off to a perfect start, with McManus registering a goal after just 36 seconds.

This score kept Joe Kernan's side on top for most of the first quarter, until Leinster rallied with six unanswered points to take a 0-7 to 1-3 lead after 15 minutes.

Points from Murphy; captain Sean Cavanagh and Monaghan's Kieran Hughes helped Ulster to a 1-8 to 0-8 lead after 26 minutes, but Leinster again rallied.

A Leighton Glynn goal pushed them ahead after 28 minutes, and although Ulster took the lead on two occasions late in the half, an Eoghan O'Gara point tied the game at 1-11 apiece at the break.

Leinster got the second half off to a perfect start with Kildare's Paul Cribben netting a goal after 32 seconds, with Luke Dempsey's charges moving 2-14 to 1-11 ahead by the 41st minute.

Ulster worked hard and following a point from Tyrone's Darren McCurry they drew the game by the 66th minute at 1-19 to 2-16.

O'Gara pushed Leinster ahead, but a late McManus score forced extra-time.

A Bryan Menton goal helped Leinster to a 3-21 to 1-22 lead at half-time in extra-time, but amazingly his side wouldn't score on the restart.

Ulster tagged on 1-4 without reply, including a Harte goal, with Cavan's Eugene Keating impressive, and Murphy delivering two vital scores late on.

Ulster and Connacht to meet in Interprovincial football final

At Tuam Stadium, Connacht braved a seven point deficit to deliver a 3-19 to 2-16 home win over Munster.

John Tobin's charges were eager in the second half, after bouncing back from a 2-9 to 1-9 deficit at half-time.

Cork's Brian Hurley netted Munster's two first half goals, but Connacht worked hard on the restart.

Cork duo Donncha O'Connor and Daniel Goulding along with Kerry's Donnacha Walsh and Jonathan Lyne were in impressive point scoring form for Munster in the opening half.

Munster led by 1-8 to 0-4, but a goal from Sligo's David Kelly and points from Galway's Paul Conroy and Roscommon's Cathal Cregg cut the gap to two points.

However, Hurley claimed his sides second goal, and Munster led by three points at the break.

Cregg (1-7); Leitrim's Emlyn Mulligan and Paul Conroy (0-5 each) led the charge for Connacht on the restart.

The trio were in superb form to help the Western province claim a place in the final for the first time since 2008.

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