Ennis inspires Royals to secure final spot
MEATH had to withstand a determined second-half rally from Offaly before sealing a place in the Leinster VS SFC final at Geashill.
The winners were in control at half-time when they led by 1-7 to 0-2, with the goal coming from Aaron Ennis. In the second half, Offaly cut the deficit to a score -- 1-7 to 0-7 -- with just eight minutes left.
But the dismissal of Offaly centre half-forward Joe Maher for a second yellow card sealed their fate. And points from Neil Shortall, Adam Gannon and Brian McMahon sealed the win for Meath.
SCORERS -- Meath: A Ennis 1-1, N Shortall 0-4 (2f), D Donnellan 0-2 (1f), R Farrelly, P Lynch, B McMahon, A Gannon 0-1 each. Offaly: B Cushen 0-3 (1f), S O'Brien 1-0, A McDonagh, D Corbett 0-2 each.
MEATH -- C O'Riordan; C Finn, C McGill, P Gallagher; J Welby, S Melia, P Haslam; N Shortall, S McEntee; D Donnellan, A Ennis, R Farrelly; P Lynch, B Davis, B McMahon. Subs: G Deery for Davis (37), A Gannon for Ennis (44), P McGrath for Farrelly (57), D Murtagh for Welby (59).
OFFALY -- W Flanagan; D Flynn, A Camon, C Lowry; T Mooney, D Corbett, O'Connor; P Camon, G Mann; B Kelly, J Maher, B Grehan; A McDonagh, B Cushen, A Munnelly. Subs: C Cahill for Grehan (40), D Bermingham for Kelly (48), S O'Brien for Munnelly (49).
REF -- G Whelan (Wicklow).