Dublin survive early mauling to storm home

Dublin 2-13 Antrim 0-12

Afterwards, Anthony Daly blamed his side’s heavy training programme on their lethargic opening where they were slow to get going and guilty of hitting some poor clearances.

But they were helped as a young Antrim side failed to make their dominance count on the scoreboard and led by three points after their purple patch.

When David O’Callaghan goaled from a rebounded Conal Keaney free in the 23rd minute, the Dubs never looked back. Keaney was making his first competitive start since his high profile return from football and after a slow start with a penalty effort saved in the fifth minute, he settled well to hit some good scores.

Another former football star, Shane Ryan, also shone with three points from play.

Once the Dubs settled and full-back Stephen Hiney curbed the threat posed by the powerful Conor Carson they began to assert themselves. Daly’s men led by 1-4 to 0-5 at the break and got a dream start to the second-half with a goal from Conor McCormack after two minutes.

Antrim hit 13 shots wide and were guilty of spurning too many easy chances as the Dubs eased their way out of danger and through to a home semi-final with Galway on Sunday.

DUBLIN: G Maguire; S Lambert, S Hiney, R Trainor; N Corcoran, J Boland, S Durkin (0-1); J McCaffrey(0-1: ‘65’), M O’Brien; C McCormack (1-0), R O’Dwyer, S Ryan (0-3); D O’Callaghan (1-1), C Keaney (0-4:3f), P Carton.

Subs: M Quilty for Carton (50), D Plunkett for Boland (50), D O’Dwyer (0-2) for R O’Dwyer (50), C Clinton (0-1) for O’Brien (64), L Ryan for McCormack (64).

ANTRIM: C O’Connell; A Griffin, C Donnelly, C McKinley; N McAuley, P Herron (0-1), K McKeague (0-1); S McNaughton, P McNaughton; M Armstrong (0-1), N McManus (0-7, 6f), T McCann; D Hamill, C Carson, C McGuinness (0-1).

Subs: L Kearns (0-1) for McGuinness (inj, 19), C Herron for P McNaughhton (ht), K McKeegan for McNaughhton (46), J Black for McCann (49).

Referee: Sean Whelan (Wexford)

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