/ GAA

Kilkenny 0-24 Dublin 1-17

Updated: Saturday, 01 Feb 2014 19:50 | Comments

Dublin's Cian O'Callaghan and Thomas Breen of Kilkenny in action in the final
Dublin's Cian O'Callaghan and Thomas Breen of Kilkenny in action in the final

Kilkenny claimed their 19th Bord na Móna Walsh Cup title following a well-earned 0-24 to 1-17 win over Dublin at Croke Park on Saturday evening.

In the first decider played at the Jones Road venue since 1968, Kilkenny fell two points in arrears early on, but led this game from the eighth minute until the end, Eoin Larkin delivering a man-of-the-match performance, finishing with 11 points.

Despite missing 11 players, and making six changes from the side that beat UCD in the semi-final, Dublin began this game strongly.

Cuala Clubman Mark Schutte got this game off to a flyer for the reigning champions, with two points from play inside the opening 100 seconds, to hand Anthony Daly's side an early 0-02 to 0-00 lead.

But Dublin couldn’t sustain this lead, a combination of missed chances and Kilkenny's dominance at midfield allowing the Cats to race 0-7 to 0-2 clear.

A brace of points from Eoin Larkin, coupled with a Joe Brennan score handed Brian Cody's charges a 0-03 to 0-02 lead after eight minutes.

Kilkenny were causing Dublin's defence all sorts of problems, with John Jo Farrell cutting through for a sixth-minute goal chance; the Thomastown man's powerful strike was denied by an Alan Nolan block.

The Cats also misfired during this spell, with Mark Kelly and Joe Brennan shooting wides, but these misses were quickly wiped out.

Kilkenny fired four points in a row with Larkin, Brennan, Padraig Walsh and Kelly all on target to ensure a five-point lead.

Paul Ryan and Schutte traded scores, but Dublin outscored Kilkenny by five points to four before the break, with a fifth Larkin point ending the opening-half scoring, and ensuring a 0-12 to 0-08 interval lead.

Kilkenny began the second half as they meant to continue racing into a 0-15 to 0-08 lead inside four minutes of the restart, with Larkin (two points) and Fennelly on target.

Dublin worked hard, and after the introduction of Danny Sutcliffe and Simon Timlin they upped their game.

Sutcliffe and Ryan fired points before the latter delivered his third goal from a placed ball in as many games to cut the gap to two points in the 44th minute.

However, this was as good as it got for Dublin, as the Cats restored their seven-point cushion, Larkin firing three of their next four points.

Once again Dublin cut the gap to two, thanks to an unbroken spell with five unanswered points.

Eamonn Dillon, Joey Boland, Schutte, Martin Quilty and Alan Nolan were on target during this spell, but the latter's effort could have been even more as his 21-metre free was sent blazing over the cross-bar.

Kilkenny finished this game strongly with Larkin and substitute Aidan Fogarty registering the final two scores.

After the game David Langton accepted the Bord na Móna Walsh Cup from Leinster GAA Chairman John Horan, while Eoin Larkin received the man of the match award from Bord na Móna's Gerry O'Hagan.

Kilkenny: D Herity; T Keogh, M Walsh, J Tyrrell; B Kennedy, T Walsh, D Langton; C Fogarty, P Walsh (0-01); J Brennan (0-03), C Fennelly (0-04), E Larkin (0-11, 8f, 1 ’65); JJ Farrell, M Kelly (0-01), T Breen (0-02).

Subs: A Fogarty (0-02) for P Walsh (48), P Murphy for Langton (56), L Ryan for Breen (66).

Dublin: A Nolan (0-01, 1f); C O'Callaghan, P Kelly, J Dougan; S Hiney, C McCormack, J Boland (0-01, 1 65); S Durkin, J McCaffrey; C Keaney, R O'Dwyer, C Cronin; P Ryan (1-04, 1-3f), D O'Callaghan (0-02), M Schutte (0-05).

Subs: S Timlin for Kelly Blood (9-13), D Sutcliffe (0-02) for McCaffrey (HT), S Timlin for Dougan (HT), M Quilty (0-01) for Durkin (51), E Dillon (0-01) for Ryan (51), P Winters for O'Dwyer (64).

Referee: D Hughes (Carlow)

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