West­meath too strong for Long­ford

The Irish Times - Monday - Sport - - Gaelic Games -

West­meath had a sur­pris­ingly facile win over neigh­bours Long­ford in Satur­day’s O’Byrne Cup semi-fi­nal at The Downs, thereby qual­i­fy­ing for next Fri­day night’s fi­nal in Par­nell Park.

Long­ford opened the scor­ing from a Barry McK­eon free in the third minute but they failed to score again for the re­main­der of the first half which was dom­i­nated by the wind-as­sisted hosts.

In­deed, the fact that all of their mea­gre to­tal of four points came from frees was a mea­sure of Long­ford’s poverty through­out the en­tire match.

Sean Flana­gan availed of fine ap­proach work by Sam Dun­can to ri­fle the ball to the Long­ford net in the 10th minute. With Kieran Martin prom­i­nent in at­tack and Ger Egan ac­cu­rate from frees, West­meath went on to lead by 1-5 to 0-1 at the break.

Come­back

The ex­pected Long­ford come­back on the change of ends never ma­te­ri­alised as the home team con­tin­ued to dom­i­nate.

They led by 1-7 to 0-3 when Cal­lum McCor­mack scored a great goal in the 53rd minute at the end of a fine move in which he was twice in­volved.

The fi­nal quar­ter was lack­lus­tre with Long­ford spurn­ing sev­eral good chances. Hard-work­ing mid­fielder Dun­can capped a fine dis­play with the last point of the match late in the con­test.

WEST­MEATH: ECar­berry; BSayeh, RWal­lace, KDaly; JDolan (0-1), NMul­li­gan, DLynch; S Flana­gan(1-0), SDun­can (0-1); GE­gan(0-4, fourfrees), CMcCor­mack(1-1), RO’Toole (0-2); G Leech, KMartin (0-1), NO’Reilly. Subs: TMcDaniel forLeech (47 mins), NCully for O’Toole (58), DGiles for Flana­gan (63), DCon­way for O’Reilly (65), MRow­den for Car­berry (65), S Pet­tit­for Martin (66), TWatts­for Egan (66), AMcGivney forMcCor­mack (69), C Slevin forLynch (69).

LONG­FORD: PCol­lum; DQuinn, AFar­rell, BO’Far­rell; CPSmyth, MQuinn, DMim­nagh; D Gal­lagher (0-1, free), PHan­ley; PLynn, BMcKeon(0-1, free), SDono­hoe; DDo­herty, RSmyth (0-2, twofrees), LCon­ner­ton. Subs: I O’Sul­li­van for Dono­hoe and PGill for Han­ley (both 50 mins),CShields for CSmyth and MHugh­es­for Do­herty (both 66 mins), NRab­bitte for Mim­nagh (67mins), PJMaster­son­for DQuinn(68mins).

Ref­eree: BCaw­ley (Kil­dare).

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