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TJ Reid shines as Kilkenny overpower Dublin

By Paul Keane at Nowlan Park | Updated: Sunday, 20 Mar 2016 16:42 | Comments

Mark Schutte somes under pressure from Jackie Tyrrell
Mark Schutte somes under pressure from Jackie Tyrrell

Kilkenny 0-23 Dublin 1-14

Hurler of the Year TJ Reid hit an impressive 11 points at Nowlan Park as Kilkenny cruised through to the knockout stages of the Allianz Hurling League.

A fourth consecutive win for the All-Ireland champions was achieved with the minimum of fuss as Brian Cody's side built up an early lead and remained well in control throughout.

All Star free-taker Reid was excellent and contributed 0-05 of his haul from open play while Walter Walsh and Richie Hogan hit 0-06 between them.

Dublin finished strongly to put some gloss on the scoreline but were comfortably beaten and fired a depressing 16 wides in front of 8,871 supporters.

Ger Cunningham's side are still through to the quarter-finals, though concerns about their consistency remain after heavy defeats to open and close the group campaign.

Kilkenny have shown strong form since losing to holders Waterford in Round 1 with wins over Tipperary, Galway and Cork and brought that momentum to bear early on here.

The sides were level at 0-01 to 0-01 before Padraig Walsh put Kilkenny into a 10th minute lead that they would hold onto and embellish.

Walsh was terrific and continuously cleared ball from the right side of Kilkenny's defence while he picked off two neat first-half points also.

It was ominous from early on for Dublin who leaked six points in a row between the 10th and 20th minutes to fall 0-07 to 0-01 behind.

They were thrown a lifeline when Fionntan MacGib scored an excellent 22nd minute goal against the run of play.

In-form Eamonn Dillon, who had an intriguing battle with Jackie Tyrrell, strode free down the left before playing a ball across for MacGib who beat Richie Reid from close range.

But it was only a momentary halt to Kilkenny's gallop and six more points without reply put them on the front foot again.

Kilkenny's work rate was excellent and three of their first-half points came from interceptions as they surged 0-14 to 1-03 at half-time.

It told a tale of their dominance that they racked up that big lead while still notching 10 wides. Dublin, in turn, blasted 11 wides in the half, mostly from long range efforts.

Dublin improved slightly in the third quarter and McGib and the dangerous Dillon contributed three points between them.

But Kilkenny looked comfortable in perfect conditions for hurling and retained an eight-point advantage with 20 minutes to go.

Dublin at least finished strong and outscored Kilkenny by three points in the closing period though they required goals at that stage and they never arrived.

Kilkenny: R Reid; J Tyrrell, J Holden, B Kennedy; P Walsh (0-02), K Joyce (0-01, 0-01f), C Buckley; L Ryan (0-02), D Cody; W Walsh (0-03), TJ Reid (0-11, 0-06f), J Maher; J Farrell, J Power (0-01), R Hogan (0-03).

Subs: M Malone for Maher, S Prendergast for Tyrrell, K Kelly for Malone.

Dublin: G Maguire; E O'Donnell, C O'Callaghan, O Gough; C Crummey, L Rushe (0-01), S Barrett; D O'Connell, G Whelan; C Cronin, N McMorrow (0-02), D Treacy (0-05, 0-04f); F MacGib (1-01), E Dillon (0-03), M Schutte (0-01).

Subs: J McCaffrey (0-01) for Whelan, S McGrath for Cronin, S Treacy for O'Connell,

Referee: John Keenan (Wicklow).

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