Cavan turned in by far their best display of the season to comfortably brush aside bogey team Roscommon and keep their Division 1 survival hopes alive.

Having played well in patches without picking up any points in their first three games against Galway, Kerry and Mayo, it all came together today for the Breffni Blues, who dominated throughout and should have won by a lot more, kicking a whopping 17 wides over the 70 minutes.

Key to Cavan's success was an excellent performance from Niall Murray, who chipped in with two points while setting up two goals. Veteran Martin Reilly also excelled while Conor Madden blasted home two brilliantly-taken goals at key times.

Cavan had failed to raise a green flag in the campaign before this afternoon but in front of 6,390 spectators - including a sizeable travelling support - they chose the right time to break that duck, with both Madden's strikes worthy of any highlight reel.

Niall Daly opened the scoring for Roscommon before Cavan reeled off three points in a row from Chris Conroy, Murray and Jack Brady (free) as they got off to their customary fast start.

However, the Rossies soon settled when Kerry native Conor Cox landed two points, one a magical effort from the wing, either side of a classy Martin Reilly score.

The sides were level four times in the first half in total. Conor Hussey and Madden (mark), Niall Kilroy and Murray exchanged points before the Rossies took the lead again with two fine scores from Cox and Cathal Cregg on the half-hour mark.

 Garry Patterson and Conor Madden 

Frees from Martin Reilly and Cox left it 0-8 to 0-7 in favour of the visitors before Cavan struck for the crucial score of the contest in the dregs of the first half, Reilly finding Madden who tore along the end-line and sent a rocket of a shot to the roof of Darren O'Malley's net to leave Cavan two ahead at the break.

Roscommon would regain the lead midway through the third quarter with frees from sub Donie Smith, Cregg and a super effort from captain Enda Smith but once Madden gathered a perfect long ball from Murray and planted to the net again, Cavan didn't look back.

Roscommon lost Ultan Harney to a straight red card with 20 minutes to play and Cavan won the final quarter by 1-6 to 0-1.

Another high ball from Murray was flicked to the net by Reilly and the Killygarry man added the next point, with Conor Moynagh, Dara McVeety and Man of the Match Murray all raising further white flags as Graham's side won pulling up.

With Tyrone and Monaghan still to come, suddenly Cavan are looking up the table as they seek to retain the top flight status they worked so hard for last term when they and today's foes gained promotion from Division 2.

Cavan: Raymond Galligan, Jason McLoughlin, Padraig Faulkner, Conor Moynagh (0-1), Ciaran Brady, Chris Conroy (0-2, 1f), Conor Rehill, Paul Graham, Killian Clarke, Martin Reilly (1-3, 1f), Dara McVeety (0-1), Niall Murray (0-2), Niall Clerkin, Jack Brady (0-1f), Conor Madden (2-1, 1m)

Subs: Gerard Smith (0-1) for Rehill (44 mins), Thomas Galligan for Graham (44 mins), Pierce Smith for J Brady (52), Stephen Murray for C Brady (58), Cian Mackey for Madden (63)

Roscommon: Darren O'Malley (0-1f), David Murray, Conor Daly, Evan McGrath, Conor Hussey (0-1), Niall Daly (0-1), Ronan Daly, Tadgh O'Rourke, Enda Smith (0-1), Shane Kiloran, Ultan Harney, Niall Kilroy (0-1), Conor Cox (0-5, 4f), Conor Devaney, Cathal Cregg (0-2, 1f)

Subs: Donie Smith (0-1f) for Kilroy (ht), Gary Patterson for Kiloran (51), Aonghus Lyons for Hussey (56), Caoilean Fitzmaurice for Cox (64), Hubert Darcy for McGrath (67)