This was a real struggle for Turlough O’Brien’s men against opponents who matched them all the way and will feel they should have got something.
Carlow were guilty of some terrible first-half shooting, hitting nine wides to none for the Exiles. London, taking their chances superbly, led 0-5 to 0-4 at the break. Hughie Gahan’s 39th-minute goal put the hosts ahead but with Donnacha McCarthy, Martin Carroll, Mark Gottsche, Scott Conroy, Conor Sheridan, Adrian Moyles and Lorcan Mulvey outstanding, the visitors refused to yield.
When Darragh O’Brien, son of the team boss, scored a superb goal on 56 minutes Carlow led 2-7 to 0-9 and looked in control. Four unanswered points from Scott Conroy, Conor Sheridan (2) and Lorcan Mulvey had the sides level before a wonderful long-range point from play by centre back Daniel St Ledger was followed by another O’Brien point to clinch victory for Carlow, who drew their opening game away to Antrim.
Scorers for Carlow: H Gahan, D O’Brien 1-1 each, D Foley 0-2fs, E Finnegan, A Kelly, D St Ledger, C Moran, J Kennedy 0-1 each.
Scorers for London: C Sheridan, L Mulvey, S Conroy (0-2fs) 0-3 each, A Moyles, A O’Hara, (0-1 1f), 0-2 each.
CARLOW: C Kearney; D Kelly, S Redmond, K Nolan; M Fitzgerald, D St Ledger, B Kavanagh; S Gannon, D Foley; E Finnegan, J Murphy, D Bambrick; D O’Brien, H Gahan, A Kelly.
Subs: B J Molloy for D Kelly (h/t); C Moran for Murphy (h/t); D Hayden for Gannon (48); J Kennedy for A Kelly (48).
LONDON: B Kavanagh; D McCarthy, P Butler, P Galvin; C Óg Greene M Carroll, M Walsh; M Gottssche, A Bradley; G Crowley, S Conroy, C Sheridan; A O’Hara, A Moyles, L Mulvey.
Subs: B Smith for Crowley (injured) (14); D McBride for Greene (48); C O’Neill for Moyles (59).
Referee: B Cawley (Kildare).