Monday 5 December 2016

Crokes dump champions out as Dublin players star for clubs

Published 10/10/2016 | 02:30

Favourites St Vincent’s recovered from a sloppy opening to account for Na Fianna by eight points at Parnell Park yesterday (1-14 to 1-6) (Stock photo)
Favourites St Vincent’s recovered from a sloppy opening to account for Na Fianna by eight points at Parnell Park yesterday (1-14 to 1-6) (Stock photo)

The exit of the All-Ireland club champions Ballyboden St Enda's at the hands of south-side rivals Kilmacud Crokes was the biggest talking-point in the capital at the weekend.

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Kilmacud Crokes emerged from a little lean patch of late to declare themselves back in the running for this year's crown.

Level on 42 minutes in a cagey match, Crokes deemed their time on the periphery to have gone on long enough. They stormed 'Boden with a blast of eight unanswered points.

And if there was a sense of champions abdicating here, there were also signs of Crokes rolling back the years.

Mark Vaughan, of peroxide Dublin fame under 'Pillar' Caffrey, kicked eight points.

Vaughan, a less fleet-footed figure these days but no less sweet a ball-striker, nailed all four of his free kicks, a pair of '45s and two points from play.

Paul Mannion, the attacking starlet of Crokes' last Dublin SFC final appearance in 2012, took the game to 'Boden in a big way too. Exactly a week on from starting in Dublin's latest All-Ireland success, he glided around Parnell Park and linked play well.

He also scored the only goal of the game, a 26th minute score which halted 'Boden's early gallop almost completely.

Favourites St Vincent's recovered from a sloppy opening to account for Na Fianna by eight points at Parnell Park yesterday (1-14 to 1-6).

After Enda Varley had opened the scoring in the first attack, Na Fianna raced down-field and when Alasdair Fitzgerald was upended, Aaron Byrne fired the resultant penalty past Michael Savage.

St Vincent's proved more clinical in the defining moment of the half as Diarmuid Connolly raced through to fire an impeccable finish past Conor McCarville in the 30th minute with Varley adding two more points after the break to confirm his team's win.

Also at Parnell Park, Dean Rock kicked 1-9 in helping Ballymun Kickhams account for St Brigid's by six points.

Kickhams enjoyed a 1-7 to 0-3 interval lead with Rock netting in the 27th minute after excellent approach play from Kevin Leahy.

The second-half was slightly more competitive as Brigid's gained some return against a strong Ballymun defence that lost James McCarthy at half-time as Paddy Andrews and Kevin Bonner shared five points from play.

However, it was never likely to prove enough as Kickhams added to their own tally thanks to two fine points by substitute Liam O'Donovan.

Irish Independent

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