Cuala (Dublin) 1-19 St Mullins (Carlow) 1-07

Con O'Callaghan rose to the occasion again with a cracking goal to keep Dublin champions Cuala on course for an AIB Leinster club SHC title at the second attempt.

The Dublin footballer and former county minor dual star added an impressive 1-03 to the 4-03 he hit last time out and his 39th-minute volleyed goal was a beauty that put the Dalkey men into a winning position.

Sean Treacy was excellent at Netwatch Cullen Park too, hitting three points and powering Mattie Kenny's men back to the provincial final having lost to Oulart-The Ballagh at that stage last year.

There were big displays from county men Paul and Mark Schutte as well, as the back-to-back Dublin champions sealed a 4 December final date with Kilkenny's O'Loughlin Gaels.

Dublin football champions St Vincent's endured a slow start against the Carlow champions a week earlier at the same venue and a similar template was observed here.

Marty Kavanagh was lively for St Mullins and nailed the opening score before a 12th-minute John Murphy goal.

It was a well-taken goal because Murphy fell to his knees after outfielding Cuala's Sean Moran to Seamus Murphy's ball in but somehow got a blistering drive away to the net.

Kavanagh added a second point and the hosts deservedly led 1-02 to 0-03 after the first quarter.

Cuala came strongly into the game from there though and outscored St Mullins 0-06 to 0-01 for the remainder of the half to take a 0-09 to 1-03 lead at the interval.

Free-taker David Treacy scored five of Cuala's points though sibling Sean was excellent as a creator, playing in David for two scores and Mark Schutte for another.

O'Callaghan, who played for Dublin in this year's football championship, was highly effective too, scoring a point and winning two frees that Treacy converted.

Fouls on O'Callaghan also led to bookings for Garry Bennett, his marker, and Paudie Kehoe.

O'Callaghan brought his takings to 0-02 for the day with a point after the restart and, in truth, it was all Cuala from there on.

The corner-forward's goal in the 39th minute was a peach, allowing Mark Schutte's sideways pass to bounce before expertly volleying it to the net, opening up a 1-11 to 1-04 lead.

Kerry man Darragh O'Connell struck a point and there were bursts of three and then four points without reply from the visitors who built up a big lead.

A bad day for St Mullins was compounded by the 60th minute dismissal of midfielder Jack Kavanagh, who scored two points, for a second yellow card offence.

Cuala: S Brennan; S Timlin, Cian O'Callaghan, O Gough; S Moran, J Sheanon, P Schutte; J Malone (0-01), D O'Connell (0-01); C Waldron, C Cronin (0-01), D Treacy (0-07, 0-05f); S Treacy (0-03), M Schutte (0-02), Con O'Callaghan (1-03).
Subs: S Stapleton for Timlin blood, Colum Sheanon (0-01) for Waldron, Stapleton for John Sheanon, R Tierney for S Treacy, B Fitzgerald for Cronin, N Carty for D Treacy.

St Mullins: K Kehoe; G Bennett, J Doran, P Doyle; D Whelan, P Kehoe, G Coady; J Kavanagh (0-02), M Walsh; John 'Minor' Murphy, M Kavanagh (0-02, 0-01f), John Murphy (1-0); J Doyle (0-03, 0-01f), S Murphy, J Walsh.
Subs: C Kavanagh for John 'Minor' Murphy, P Connors for Murphy.

Referee: P Burke (Kilkenny)