Late Kildare scores end Laois' winning streak

Kildare 1-13 Laois 1-11

Kildare 1-13 Laois 1-11

A couple of late frees by Eoghan O’Flaherty edged victory for Kildare in the midlands derby, and in the process, brought Laois’ 100% record in the Allianz Football League to an end.

O’Flaherty’s first effort in the 69th minute came from a tight angle and was converted with his left boot. Less than a minute later, he used the right to rifle over from 55m and ensure that Kieran McGeeney would have bragging rights over his friend and fellow Mullaghbawn man, Justin McNulty.

Kildare welcomed back Gary White and Daryl Flynn for their first games of the season, while Laois could call on Cahir Healy.

The Lilies were without Eamonn Callaghan, Johnny Doyle, Peter Kelly and Dermot Earley though and although they had patches of very good football, they lacked the dash of last summer and looked laboured at times but then they are hardly hoping to be at that level in the middle of March.

Laois were without Brendan Quigley and Donie Kingston but Padraig Clancy put in another good shift in the middle and Colm Begley picked up plenty of possession in that area as well.

Indeed, so prominent were Laois in that sector that McGeeney was forced to bring Flynn out and Hugh Lynch was replaced soon after.

Kildare had a point in the board after 20 seconds from Rob Kelly but Begley found the net for Laois in the fourth minute after a strong run taking a pass from the brilliant Ross Munnelly after the Arles-Kilcruise man had swept past Brian Flanagan. Begley gave Shane Connolly no chance with a powerful shot.

White and Flynn had the teams level within a couple of minutes though as Kildare fed their inside men with quality ball.

As Laois got on top in the centre though, that supply became more speculative and Kevin Meaney swept up the skyscrapers.

What’s more, Munnelly in particular began to have some joy, having initially began with a roaming role. Once he reverted inside, he kicked two excellent points and fisted another, while Michael John Tierney added a brace, including a wonderful kick from play.

Laois were five points clear and good value for it before the hard-working Ronan Sweeney converted a 24th minute free – Kildare’s first score in 18 minutes. He added a couple more and had a hand in Emmet Bolton’s point to reduce to margin to one but Laois finished strongly with points from Darren Strong and John O’Loughlin to lead by 1-7 to 0-7 at the interval.

Laois resumed in determined fashion and when Munnelly got around Ollie Lyons easily and finished after a strong run from Robert Kehoe, there were four points between them again.

Kildare got the stroke of luck they might have needed in the 45th minute when James Kavanagh’s shot was brilliantly saved by Michael Nolan but the rebound hit the retreating Denis Booth and trickled into the net.

Within seconds, Keith Cribbin had equalised but Laois were in front again entering the final five minutes after Strong blazed over when put through by O’Loughlin with only Connolly to beat.

He was punished for not taking the goal when Kelly equalised before O’Flaherty struck late on to secure the points for Kildare.

Kildare: S Connolly; H McGrillen, M Foley, O Lyons; G White 0-1, B Flanagan, E Bolton 0-1; H Lynch, P O’Neill; E O’Flaherty 0-2(fs), R Sweeney 0-4(3fs), F Dowling; K Cribbin 0-1, R Kelly 0-2, D Flynn 0-2. Sub: J Kavanagh 1-0 for Lynch (26); A Smith for Dowling (59); M O’Flaherty for Bolton (61)

Laois: M Nolan; R Kehoe, K Meaney, D Booth; D Strong 0-2, S Julian, C Healy; P Clancy, C Begley 1-0; N Donoher, J O’Loughlin 0-1, D Carroll; R Munnelly 0-5, B Sheehan, MJ Tierney 0-3(2fs). Sub: G Kavanagh for Carroll (31); P O’Leary for Healy (50); M Timmons for Sheehan (67)

Referee: J McQuillan (Cavan)

More in this section

CourtsGaaHeathrowPerson: Eoghan O’FlahertyPerson: O’FlahertyPerson: Kieran McGeeneyPerson: Justin McNultyPerson: Gary WhitePerson: Daryl FlynnPerson: Cahir HealyPerson: Eamonn CallaghanPerson: Johnny DoylePerson: Peter KellyPerson: Dermot EarleyPerson: Brendan QuigleyPerson: Donie KingstonPerson: Padraig ClancyPerson: Colm BegleyPerson: McGeeneyPerson: FlynnPerson: Hugh LynchPerson: Rob KellyPerson: BegleyPerson: Ross MunnellyPerson: Brian FlanaganPerson: Shane ConnollyPerson: WhitePerson: Kevin MeaneyPerson: MunnellyPerson: Michael John TierneyPerson: Ronan SweeneyPerson: Emmet BoltonPerson: Darren StrongPerson: John O’LoughlinPerson: Ollie LyonsPerson: Robert KehoePerson: James KavanaghPerson: Michael NolanPerson: Denis BoothPerson: Keith CribbinPerson: StrongPerson: O’LoughlinPerson: ConnollyPerson: KellyPerson: S ConnollyPerson: H McGrillenPerson: M FoleyPerson: O LyonsPerson: G WhitePerson: B FlanaganPerson: E BoltonPerson: H LynchPerson: P O’NeillPerson: E O’FlahertyPerson: R SweeneyPerson: FPerson: K CribbinPerson: R KellyPerson: DPerson: J KavanaghPerson: LynchPerson: A SmithPerson: DowlingPerson: M O’FlahertyPerson: M NolanPerson: R KehoePerson: K MeaneyPerson: D BoothPerson: SPerson: P ClancyPerson: C BegleyPerson: N DonoherPerson: J O’LoughlinPerson: D CarrollPerson: R MunnellyPerson: B SheehanPerson: MJ TierneyPerson: CarrollPerson: P O’LearyPerson: HealyPerson: M TimmonsPerson: SheehanPerson: J McQuillanEvent: Allianz Football LeagueOrganisation: Laois'Organisation: KildareOrganisation: LaoisOrganisation: Laois’Organisation: Arles-KilcruiseOrganisation: Bolton
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