Wexford skipper Mattie Forde was once again the star of the show for his side as they swept Louth aside 2-10 to 0-08 at Parnell Park, ensuring their first Leinster SFC win for four years.

Forde, unusually for him in 2004, failed to chip in with a goal, but accounted for eight of Wexford's points, linking up play well with the two goalscorers, Darren Foran and John Hegarty.

Forde had a 31st minute penalty tipped away by Louth stopper Shane McCoy as both sides finished with 14 men with Louth half-back Ray Rooney and Wexford's David Fogarty both received their marching orders in separate incidents.

Fogarty, who went for a straight red after lunging two-footed at McCoy midway through the second half, missed a sitter of a goal chance in the first minute, but Wexford were soon on target from a Forde free.

Darren Clarke replied for Louth before Ollie McDonnell pushed the Wee county in front for the only time in the match on eight minutes.

As the clock turned towards the tenth minute, 19-year-old Foran found the Louth net, brilliantly played in by Fogarty.

Paddy Matthews and Ollie McDonnell traded points with Forde and Wexford wing-back George Sutherland, pointing after 26 minutes for a 1-04 to 0-04 lead.

Five minutes later Forde saw his penalty blocked, after Redmond Barry had won it for Wexford, being hauled down on the run. However, the resultant 45 was pinged over by Forde and his fifth score, from play, saw Wexford lead 1-06 to 0-04 at the break.

Forde continued his form, cancelling out an early second-half effort from Paddy Keenan to see Wexford 1-09 to 0-05 in front before Hegarty found the net on 54 minutes.

Mark Stansfield, McDonnell and Keenan kept up the Louth fight with scores from the 57th minute on, but Hegarty saw out the Wexford win with a closing point that sees them meet Kildare on June 6.

Filed by Aidan O'Doherty