Dublin find second wind

Dublin took off in the second half to book their place against Meath in the Leinster MFC final in convincing fashion.

While the teams went in level at half-time, the signs had been there at the latter end of the opening period that the Dubs were beginning to wrest control.

A Neil Flynn goal, allied with two outstanding saves by Colin Heaney kept Kildare in touch, with dual star Cormac Costello bagging four points for Dublin.

While Dublin’s use of a sweeper and funnelling back of players wasn’t all that effective in the first half, it certainly prospered in the second, as numerous Kildare clearances were cut off.

Dessie Farrell’s young charges were well on top in the third quarter but over-elaboration led to too many turnovers.

The key score was undoubtedly Conor McHugh’s 35th minute goal at a time when the sides were still level. The Na Fianna man sidestepped his marker beautifully, and when Heaney advanced, repeated the trick to create sufficient space and slide the ball to the net.

Heaney made another spectacular stop from Niall Scully five minutes later and Wayne Fitzpatrick offered Kildare hope with an excellent point soon after.

But Dublin lofted over four points on the trot before Costello found the net ten minutes from time to remove any doubt about the verdict.

Scorers for Dublin: C Costello 1-5(0-2fs); C McHugh 1-3; N Scully 0-3; N Walsh 0-2; Shane Cunningham, R Gaughan, S Carthy(45) 0-1 each

Kildare: N Flynn 1-1; P Brophy, N Kelly 0-2 each; M Sherry, W Fitzpatrick, R Fitzgibbon 0-1 each

DUBLIN: L Molloy; E Mullan, D Byrne, R McGowan; E Lowndes, C Mulally, M Mac Donncha; Stephen Cunningham, S Carthy; R Gaughan, G Burke, N Walsh; C McHugh, C Costello.

Subs: Shane Cunningham for Gaughan (25); E Fletcher for Mac Donncha (52); D Gormley for Walsh (57); J Fitzgibbon for Mulally (60+1)

KILDARE: C Heaney; P Mescall, S O’Hagan, E Mahon; R Houlihan, D Hyland, D Duke; M Sherry, P Connell; S O’Flynn, N Kelly; W Fitzpatrick, C Healy, P Brophy, N Flynn.

Subs: T O’Connell for O’Hagan (39); C McMonagle for O’Flynn (42); K Mulhall for Mescall (48); R Fitzgibbon for Healy (48); O Gill for Sherry (55)

Referee: D Gough (Meath)

Meath 4-22 Wicklow 0-4

Corner-forward Adam Gannon was the main man for Meath as they routed Wicklow by a whopping 30 points margin in their Leinster U-21 B hurling championship semi-final at Arklow last night.

Scorers for Meath: Adam Gannon (3-4), Mark Sullivan (1-6), Keith Keoghan (0-3), Paddy Kenneally (0-4), James Toher (0-2), Damien McGee (0-1), Aaron Ennis (0-2).

Wicklow: Mikey Lee (0-3, frees), Shane Nolan (0-1).

MEATH: C. Murray, P. Maguire, N. Weir, S. Brennan, J. Kelly, E. Lynch, T. Raleigh, J. Toher, S. Morris, M. Sullivan, K. Keoghan, D. McGee, A. Gannon, A. Healy, P. Kenneally.

Subs: A. Ennis for K. Keoghan, B. Wright for S. Brennan, R. Andrews for A. Healy, E. Marsh for E. Lynch, F. Ferguson for A. Gannon

WICKLOW: P. O’Reilly, R. O’Neill, K. Molloy, A Nugent, M. O’Brien, H. Stephenson, L. O’Reilly, R. Byrne, J. Manley, G. Fuisciardi, G. O’Gorman, A. Murphy, M. Lee, A. Conyard, S. Nolan.

Subs: G. Weir for G. Fusciardi, E. Quirke for J. Manley, W. Kavanagh for A. Nugent, C. Kelly for L. O’Reilly, S. O’Brien for A. Conyard.

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