For­ward power points to Mi­nor glory for Cille’s

Mid Louth Independent - - SPORT -

THESE are ex­cit­ing times for St Colm­cille’s, es­pe­cially at un­der­age level, and the east Meath club will at­tempt to cap­ture their sec­ond county crown in three years in the Mi­nor grade when they take on Don­agh­more-Ash­bourne in Sun­day’s cur­tain-raiser, which has a 1.30 throw-in.

The Cille’s were win­ners against Na Fianna in 2016 when a James Con­lon-in­spired out­fit claimed the ti­tle. Two years ear­lier they lost out to Dun­boyne 2-6 to 1-6. They were also de­feated in the 2000 fi­nal by O’Ma­hony’s.

Teams back­boned by Bob O’Mal­ley, Bernard Flynn, Ciaran and Joe Carr recorded back-to-back suc­cesses in the early 1980s.

Don­agh­more/Ash­bourne’s last fi­nal ap­pear­ance also proved a suc­cess­ful one when they over­came Dun­boyne 3-5 to 0-7 in the 2013 de­cider. The club reg­is­tered a three-in-arow be­tween 2006 and 2008 be­fore los­ing the 2009 fi­nal to Dun­shaugh­lin.

Both teams are packed with play­ers who were ei­ther on the Meath mi­nor squad this year or are mem­bers of the county U-16 De­vel­op­ment Panel.

For St Colm­cille’s, David Bell, Endy Ehi­choya and Cian Flynn all wore the county colours, while Ruairí Han­lon was a key mem­ber of the Louth mi­nor team this year.

Lin­ing out for Don­agh­more/ Ash­bourne will be Cil­lian He­garty who was also a county mi­nor as well as be­ing on the Gerry Reilly U-16-winning side. David Carr and Kil­lian Ho­gan were also on Joe Tre­anor’s mi­nor panel, with Evan Quinn, Jamie Browne and Rod­ney Jones pick­ing up medals in the Gerry Reilly Tour­na­ment.

Both sides were very im­pres­sive in their re­spec­tive semi-fi­nals, winning out when tight en­coun­ters were an­tic­i­pated. St Colm­cille’s eased past Na­van O’Ma­hony’s in their last-four clash, hav­ing 12 points to spare at the fin­ish.

The Ash­bourne boys were pos­si­bly even more im­pres­sive against league cham­pi­ons Se­neschal­stown in the other semi and they had one foot in the fi­nal when lead­ing 1-12 to 0-1 at the break. They even­tu­ally had six points to spare at the fin­ish.

An in­trigu­ing tus­sle is in prospect, with St Colm­cille’s key play­ers in at­tack likely to tip the bal­ance in their favour.

Photo: Brian Mul­li­gan

The St Colm­cille’s squad that play Don­agh­more/Ash­bourne in Sun­day’s Meath MFC fi­nal at Pairc Tail­teann. Back (l to r) Bren­dan Quigley, Cian Flynn, Ben Wilde, Matthew Weir, Adam McCabe, Ewan Cough­lan, Stephen Breen, Luke Brady, Ross Mol­loy, Hugo Collins, Daniel Doyle, Ste­fan Bors, Ciaran White, Gary Burke, Mark Har­ris and De­nis Collins; Front (l to r) Mick Mol­loy, Ruairi Han­lon, Brian But­ler, Endy Ehi­choya, David Bell, Oran Kinch, Jamie Duffy, Cathal But­ler, Fer­dia Quigley, Aaron Lynch, Hazel Bell and Billy Bell.

The Meath 1993 All-Ire­land-winning U-21 team will be guests of hon­our at this Sun­day’s se­nior club fi­nal in Pairc Tail­teann. They de­feated Kerry 1-8 to 0-10 to give the county its only suc­cess at that level. Pic­tured are (Back, l to r) Gra­ham Ger­aghty, Ro­nan McGrath, Jimmy McGuin­ness, John McCarthy, Conor Martin, Hugh Carolan, Vinny Ryan, Tom Han­ley and (Front, l to r) Ja­son Hen­drick, Tony Byrne, Terry Con­nor, Peter Sul­li­van, Enda McManus, Thomas Shine, Cathal Sheri­dan.

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