/ GAA

Kildare 1-10 Meath 0-09

Updated: Monday, 27 Jan 2014 12:57 | Comments

Kildare's Mick O'Grady (l) and Andrew Tormey of Meath
Kildare's Mick O'Grady (l) and Andrew Tormey of Meath

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Kildare claimed back-to-back Bord na Móna O'Byrne Cup titles with a 1-10 to 0-09 win over Meath at St Conleth's Park in Newbridge this afternoon.

Seven players were on target for the hosts, including midfielder Thomas Moolick who delivered the only goal of the contest in the fifth minute.

Moolick's goal had Kildare on the front foot for most of the opening half, but Meath tied the game by the 33rd minute, however, a Darroch Mulhall point edged Kildare ahead at the break, and gave them a lead the Lilywhites would not relinquish.

Kildare had dominated the opening exchanges and held a firm foothold at midfield early on with Moolick cutting through the middle to net the decisive goal early on.

The hosts combined well in the build-up with Kevin Murnaghan, Eoghan O'Flaherty and Paddy Brophy involved, before Brophy placed the inrushing Moolick who slotted past Meath goalkeeper Conor McHugh.

Kildare continued to shade the midfield exchanges, with Padraig Fogarty adding a point after eight minutes to open up a 1-01 to 0-00 lead.

Gradually Meath began to exert some control, with four attacks yielding three points between the 11th and 15th minutes as scores from Stephen Bray, Eamon Wallace and Michael Newman cut the gap to a point.

Newman had a chance to level the game but sent a 45-metre free wide of the target midway through the half, while at the opposite end the Kildare defence were punished with Darroch Mulhall claiming the first of his two opening half points.

Cathal McNally pushed Kildare a goal clear on a 1-03 to 0-03 score-line in the 21st minute.

The hosts had a chance to claim their second goal nine minutes before the break, but Royals keeper McHugh cut off a Mulhall shot for a 45'.

Points from Bray and Wallace drew levelled the scores after 33 minutes, while Meath had an opportunity to take the lead for the first time but Newman's goalward shot was deflected off the line by Kildare full-back Mick Foley.

Kildare had one last attack before the break, with Meath conceding a free inside, which Mulhall converted for the last action of the half to hand Kildare a 1-04 to 0-06 interval lead.

Both sides were wasteful in front of the posts inside the opening five minutes of the second half.

Meath had an early goal chance snuffed out, after a shot from David Dalton was blocked by Kildare keeper Mark Donnellan.

Newman fired wide soon after, but Kildare also misfired with a brace of missed shots.

Scores from man of the match Paul Cribbin and Mulhall opened up a goal advantage.

Meath kept in touch thanks to the efforts of Newman, but Kildare took some good scores, with Mulhall and Sean Hurley on target to take a 1-09 to 0-08 lead with just over ten minutes remaining.

Goal efforts from Newman and Paddy Gilsenan went amiss for the Royals, who also lost midfielder Andrew Tormey on a black card nine minutes from the end.

A point for each side meant the Lilywhites maintained their four-point advantage on the final whistle, leaving Kildare captain Eoghan O'Flaherty to receive the Bord na Móna O'Byrne Cup in the presence of new Leinster GAA Chairman John Horan.

Kildare: M Donnellan; M O'Grady, M Foley, H McGrillen; K Murnaghan, E Bolton, P Cribbin (0-02); T Moolick (1-00), G White; C McNally (0-01), E O'Flaherty, S Hurley (0-01); P Brophy (0-01), D Mulhall (0-04, 2f), P Fogarty (0-01).

Subs used: O Lyons for McGrillen (50); J Gately for McNally (57); F Dowling for Mulhall (68); F Conway for O'Flaherty (71).

Meath: C McHugh; D Keogan, M Burke, C Young; D Dalton, E Harrington, P Gilsenan; C Gillespie, A Tormey; P McKeever, D McDonagh, D Larkin (0-01); E Wallace (0-02), S Bray (0-02), M Newman (0-04, 3f 1 45).

Subs used: K Reilly for Gillespie (19); G Reilly for McKeever (45); D Bray for Wallace (45); D Carroll for McDonagh (45); S O'Rourke for Carroll (Blood (50-52); S O'Rourke for Young (53); K O'Sullivan for Tormey (61-Black).

Referee: Fergal Kelly (Longford)

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