Tyrone retained their Ulster SFC title with a comfortable 2-17 to 0-15 win over Down at St Tiernach’s Park.

Padraig Hampsey and Mattie Donnelly hit two each as Tyrone moved into a 0-07 to 0-05 interval lead, with Ryan Johnston and Niall Donnelly landing long-range Mourne points.

The Red Hands hit the first seven points of the second period, and Ronan O’Neill came off the bench to grab two goals as the Down challenge died in the Clones sunshine.

In front of a crowd of 31,912, centre-back Hampsey fired over a couple of long-range points early on as Tyrone asserted themselves.

Peter Harte also hit the target as they moved ahead 0-03 to 0-01, with Shay Millar getting the Mourne men off the mark.

Tyrone retreated inside their own ’45, leaving only Mark Bradley as an isolated front man, smothering a series of Down attacks and breaking at pace and in numbers to create shots at goal.

However, the Down defence stood firm, and the pace of the game suddenly waned, with both sides carrying the ball from deep before confronting banks of defenders.

Down were forced to shoot from distance, and pulled back one through an excellent Ryan Johnston effort.

But the Red Hands went 0-06 to 0-02 ahead in the 22nd minute when Sean Cavanagh’s fisted effort followed a Niall Sludden point from distance.

However, Down adopted a patient approach, and crafted scores for Niall Donnelly and Darragh O’Hanlon to narrow the gap to two

The Mourne men were getting some joy from Ryan Johnston’s relentless running from deep, and he set up a score for Conor Maginn as they continued to chip away at the champions’ lead.

And they had a glorious goal chance late in the half, when Jerome Johnston slipped the ball to O’Hanlon, but his ferociously struck shot flew just wide.

Mattie Donnelly’s second point sent the Red Hands in with a 0-07 to 0-05 interval lead, and they pushed on with scores from David Mulgrew and Sean Cavanagh.

And as they pushed forward in a much more offensive approach, Mark Bradley tagged on another for a double scores led 0-10 to 0-05, with just three minutes of the second half played.

Down suffered a massive blow when the experienced Kevin McKernan received a black card on 41 minutes.

The Red Hands hit seven points on the spin as the Down challenge faded, moving into a 0-14 to 0-05 led by the 53rd minute.

It took Down 18 minutes to score their first point of the second half, Caolan Mooney finishing off a move involving Maginn and Joe Murphy.

But with substitute Declan McClure making a big impact at midfield, the Red Hands continued to dominate.

Ronan O’Neill came off the bench to hit the net with his fist touch, and he lobbed goalkeeper Michael Cunningham for his second goal six minutes from the end.

Tyrone: N Morgan; A McCrory, R McNamee, C McCarron; T McCann (0-01), P Hampsey (0-03), P Harte (0-02, 1f); C Cavanagh, C McCann (0-01); D Mulgrew (0-01), N Sludden (0-01), K McGeary: M Bradley (0-02), S Cavanagh (0-02, 1f), M Donnelly (0-03).

Subs: D McClure for McGeary (BC 37), G McCurry for S Cavanagh (48), R O’Neill (2-00)for Bradley (53), C Meyler for Mulgrew (55), C McShane for C McCann (58), L Brennan (0-01) for Sludden (66)

Down: M Cunningham (0-01, f); N McParland, G McGovern, D O'Hagan; D O'Hanlon (0-04, 3f), C McGovern, C Mooney (0-03); K McKernan, N Donnelly (0-01); P Turley, C Maginn (0-01), S Millar (0-01); J Johnston, C Harrison, R Johnston (0-02).

Subs: J Murphy (0-01) for McKernan (BC 41), D McKibbin (0-01) for Turley (45), D O’Hare for J Johnston (48), M Poland for Millar (56), A Carr for Donnelly (58), S Dorman for Maginn (62), C Poland for M Poland (70)

Referee: J McQuillan (Cavan).