Slow start proves costly

The Argus - - SPORT -

WITH Louth aim­ing to ar­rest a de­bil­i­tat­ing ten­dency for slow starts and Roscom­mon in­tent on putting an ab­ject per­for­mance against Down be­hind them, the start was al­ways go­ing to be cru­cial at the Gaelic Grounds on Sun­day.

And so it proved, as a dev­as­tat­ing open­ing 10 min­utes from the Rossies put them firmly in the driv­ing seat in a make-or­break show­down.

Louth did of­fer some mea­sure of re­sis­tance as the firsthalf pro­gressed, but in the end Roscom­mon’s ex­tra class and craft trumped the home side’s re­silience quite com­fort­ably.

In truth, Louth never re­ally re­cov­ered from that dev­a­s­tat-

Roscom­mon Louth 1-21 0-12

ing open­ing salvo by Roscom­mon.

The Con­nacht out­fit barely let their hosts out of their own half as they opened a five­point lead in­side 10 min­utes, by which point the Reds were lucky not be chas­ing an even big­ger deficit.

Mid­field­ers Enda Smith and Conor Daly set the tone with an ex­plo­sive start to the con­test.

The drove Roscom­mon for- ward from the first whis­tle and the lat­ter opened the scor­ing af­ter just 20 sec­onds.

Craig Lynch dropped the re­sult­ing kick-out straight to a grate­ful Conor Deven­ney and he made it two-nil with barely a minute on the clock.

Then it was Smith’s turn to take cen­tre stage, curl­ing over a su­per point from the left, be­fore switch­ing sides and tech­nique to fire over a sub­lime point with the out­side of his boot.

An­other Deven­ney point made it 0-5 to no score and then Roscom­mon passed up two goal chances.

An over-elab­o­rate build-up al­lowed Louth to clear their

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