When Diarmuid Connolly sat back into the pocket, setting himself up for power fade with the outside of his right boot, in a similar way to Ronan O’Gara and the Grand Slam drop goal over a decade ago, I thought perhaps the story was written in the stars for the prodigal son to return home with the fattened calf.
In the 2017 Division 1 final, Kerry brought Dublin’s 36-game unbeaten record across League and Championship to an end. Next Sunday, they aim to prevent Jim Gavin’s men from extending their defeat-less Championship run to 36. Thirty-three Championship wins and two draws have brought Dublin to the brink of creating GAA history. Here are 15 facts and figures behind their remarkable five-in-a-row tilt:
Getting the match-ups right has gone a long way for Kerry and Mayo in recent years. We think of Aidan O’Mahony on Michael Murphy in the 2014 final, Lee Keegan on Enda Smith in the 2017 All-Ireland quarter-final replay and just last weekend Patrick Durcan tagging Ryan McHugh.
In the end, we were given a dramatic conclusion rarely in keeping with the general tedium of events as Fintan Kelly fired over a glorious point deep into injury-time to secure a noteworthy success for Monaghan against the All-Ireland champions.