Byrne fires home late 1-01
ASHFORD KILCOOLE 2-07 0-10
A vital 1-01 from the Wicklow Cup winning captain of 2017, Danny Byrne, helped Ashford to something of a surprise victory over Kilcoole under heavy showers last Thursday evening.
The skillful Byrne was introduced at half-time – having also entered the fray earlier in the first half as a blood sub – as the rain moved on and a glorious rainbow settled over the lovely village of Ashford, and, using the undoubted soccer skills he possesses, Byrne produced his own pot of scoring gold when he latched on to a breaking ball to slip home past Luke Doyle and moments later showed a lovely turn to allow him rifle over a sweet point for what was the final score of the game to give his side a worthy victory.
The result didn’t really look on the cards when referee Jimmy Kelly sounded the whistle at the end of the first half with the visitors leading by 0-06 to 1-01.
The men from the Goosebank had opened a two-point lead through Conor Scullion and Robbie Whelan but that lead had been wiped out by a classy goal from full-forward Paul Conyard.
Kilcoole recovered well from this major and went on to bag points via the boots of Conor Scullion (2), Patrick Woods, and Robbie Whelan again to send them into a huddle in the pouring rain at the break.
Things improved for the visitors after the break when Philip Brien fired over a superb point in the opening minute but Danny Byrne was already making his presence felt at this stage and he won a 45 which Jack Byrne took only to see his effort fell short but he got a second chance and pointed from open play.
Points from Gary McGuire and the aforementioned Byrne drew the sides level, but good work from McGuire afforded Adam Hill the opportunity for a shot and he split the posts to give the home side the lead after 13 minutes of the second half at 1-05 to 0-07.
Kiloole’s Gary Coady levelled matters on 19 minutes and points from Jason Walsh and Robbie Whelan either side of a Sean Duffy minor left Kilcoole leading narrowly by 0-10 to 1-06 after 26 minutes of the second half.
And then deadly Danny struck for the killer blow. A high hopeful ball from Trevor Conyard caused Luke Doyle awful problems due to Darren Doyle making an absolute nuisance of himself and Adam Hill managed to get a fist to the ball and it broke to Byrne who slipped it home with ease to the back of the Kilcoole net.
And he wasn’t finished there. Kilcoole attacked but were re- pelled and back came Ashford. Trevor Conyard lost the ball on the Kilcoole 45 but it broke to Jack Byrne who showed massive energy and commitment to reach the ball, keep it in play and go around Killian Hannon and cross it soccer style from the endline into the Kilcoole square where it was met by the hoof of Aaron Lennon. However, his instinctive clearance was gathered by the waiting the Danny Byrne who lobbed over a beauty to seal victory for the home side. Kilcoole did attack late on looking to rescue something but the Ashford defence, led by Kevin O’Brien, stood firm.
– Ashford: Danny Byrne 1-01, Paul Conyard 1-00, Jack Byrne 0-02, Adam Hill 0-01, Lar Newsome 0-01 (f), Sean Duffy 0-01, Gary McGuire 0-01.
Kilcoole: Robbie Whelan 0-03, Conor Scullion 0-02, Jamie Murray 0-01, Patrick Woods 0-01, Philip Brien 0-01, Gary Coady 0-01, Jason Walsh 0-01 (f).
Colm Copeland; Kevin Cullinhan, Kevin O’Brien, Danny Turner; Rian Dwyer, Sean Beale, Jack Byrne; Conor Behan, Anto Driver; Adam Hill, Lar Newsome, Conor Cunningham; Gary McGuire, Paul Conyard, Sean Duffy. Subs: Danny Byrne for P Conyard (h/T); Philip Doyle for Lar Newsome.
Luke Doyle; Stephen Kelly, Chris Byrne, Aaron Lennon; James Scullion, Gary Coady, Killian Hannon; Robbie Whelan, Patrick Woods; Conor Scullion, Jason Walsh, Philip Brien; Jamie Murray, Sean Hocktor, Andrew Flood. Sub: Barry Diskin for A Flood.
Jimmy Kelly (Knockananna)