Rath­new march on

GAELIC GAMES DOO­LEY POYN­TON SE­NIOR FOOT­BALL CHAM­PI­ONSHIP

Bray People - - Sport - Peter KEOGH

Rath­new 1-12, New­town 09: If the St. Pat’s v. Bless­ing­ton match turned out to be the Paul Earls show than this surely was the ‘Leighton Glynn show’.

Sel­dom in the re­cent his­tory of the Rath­new club has one man played a big­ger part in a cham­pi­onship victory.

It was a case of the ‘old dog for the hard road’ in this sec­ond quar­ter-fi­nal in the Se­nior foot­ball cham­pi­onship at Aughrim on Sun­day.

For three quar­ters of the game a fresh young New­town side set the pace. They led by 0-4 to 0-1 af­ter 15 min­utes and by 0-5 to 03 at half-time.

Twice in the sec­ond-half they stretched their lead to three points but crafty Rath­new were bid­ing their time, fi­nally wore them down, drew level for the first time in the 50th minute and then went on to win at their ease.

In fact they did ex­actly what the man­ager Harry Mur­phy told the ‘Wick­low Peo­ple’ they would do – get the re­sult they needed without fuss or bother.

As every­one ex­pected Gail Dunne had New­town fly­ing at the start; John Hef­fer­nan kicked over the first point in the third minute; Paudie Doyle had points in the fourth and ninth min­utes to put then 0-3 ahead and still the lion had not awak­ened from his slum­bers.

Stephen Ka­vanagh had Rath­new’s first point in the 11th minute but that brought a quick re­sponse from Dean Od­lum who pointed a minute later.

Gar­rett Doyle had a New­town point in the 16th minute but that was to prove their last score of the first-half.

Leighton Glynn won a free and Nicky Mer­nagh sent it over and when Glynn was again brought down on the other side of the field Tommy Gill pointed with the left foot. Half-time – New­town 0-5, Rath­new 0-3.

Noth­ing changed in the third quar­ter ex­cept that now it was Rath­new that were set­ting the agenda. Glynn pointed in the first minute but Gar­rett Doyle scored from a free. Ed Doyle had a good point in the tenth minute but again Doyle replied.

It all started to hap­pen for Rath­new in the last quar­ter. Leighton Glynn had his sec­ond point while Nicky Mer­nagh brought Rath­new level for the first time with ten min­utes to go.

Glynn and Nicky Mer­nagh kicked over points but Dean Od­lum had a great score for New­town and with five min­utes to go one point sep­a­rated the sides and it was still all to play for.

How­ever, Rath­new had got the scent of victory, Glynn set up Ken Doyle for a point and Tommy Gill added an­other. The game was in­jury-time when Gill got on the end of a Nicky Mer­nagh cross to box home the game’s only goal and while Dean Od­lum had the last point a minute later it was all over at that stage.

An­other big fac­tor was the dis­play of high field­ing by James Stafford at mid­field.

The big fel­low may have been a bit slow to start but when he got go­ing New­town had no an­swer to his mighty fetch­ing. Tommy Gill was again the game’s top scorer but sig­nif­i­cantly all six Rath­new for­wards got on the score­sheet

That re­sult will see Rath­new and Kil­te­gan meet in the semi­fi­nal for the third year in a row.

Rath­new: Peter Duig­nam; Alan Clarke, Damien Power, Stephen Cana­van; Chris Healy, Stephen Byrne, Barry Mer­nagh; James Stafford, Richard Duig­nam; Ed Doyle (0-2), Leighton Glynn (0-3), Stephen Ka­vanagh (0-1); Ken Doyle (0-1), Tommy Gill (1-2), Nickie Mer­nagh (0-3). Subs. - An­thony Mer­nagh for R. Dig­nam; Paul Mer­ri­gan for B. Mer­nagh.

New­town: Richard Franey; Niall Mer­nagh, Andy Halpin, John Tier­ney; Ja­son Owens, Ja­son Collins, Philly Martin; Paul O’Rear­don, Cathal McNi­cholas; Paudie Doyle (02); Gar­ret Doyle (0-3), John Hef­fer­nan (0-1); Dean Od­lum (0-3), Ciarán McGuirl, Ross Od­lum. Subs. – Terry Halpin for N. Martin; Eoin O’Rear­don for McGuirl; Barry Davis for P. Doyle; Mark Fitzsi­mons for P. O’Rear­don.

Rath­new's Stephen Cana­van and New­town's Paul Doyle com­pete for the high ball.

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