CORK dealt an almost fatal blow to Sligo Rovers’ title hopes tonight by keeping the home side to a scoreless draw at the Showgrounds.Sligo were chasing St Pat’s at the top but have now dropped back to third in the table.
Another clean sheet always looked likely for the home side but they couldn’t make any headway at the other end either.
Rovers were not helped by the loss of Evan McMillan to injury, with the centre-back now a doubt for Sunday’s FAI Cup final against Shamrock Rovers.
Meanwhile, Dundalk are guaranteed a place in the top three after a Richie Towell hat-trick gave them a comfortable 3-0 win over Derry City at Oriel Park.
The result moved Lilywhites moved back into second, three points behind Pat’s but with a game extra played.
Derry City could have had an early lead with a run by Michael Rafter into the box – but the ref judged his fall to a dive and issued a yellow card to the striker.
Towell struck twice in two minutes in the first half and added a third on 66 minutes to complete his hat-trick.
At Thomond Park, Limerick edged out a close game against Bohemians to claim a 1-0 win.
It came after Bohs and Limerick had swapped dominance throughout the first half. After half-time, the score never looked liked changing until Williams climbed high to meet Bradley's delivery.
In Tallaght, Shamrock Rovers were never in trouble as they completed a 3-0 victory over Bray Wanderers
A goal from Mark Quigley and a brace from Karl Sheppard secured the three points over a Bray side fighting to stay in the top flight.
The scoreline could have been a lot wider and confidence will be high for Rovers as that fourth-place finish looks achievable.
Shelbourne picked up their first point in five games but they threw away a two-goal lead against at home to Drogheda as the game finished 2-2 on the night.
The Reds took the lead after Derek Doyle swung a corner in past a confused Michael Schlingermann. They doubled their lead on 24 minutes as centre back Paul Andrews deflected a shot off Paul O’Conor and past Schlingermann.
But first a penalty and then a wayward cross/shot from Gavin Brennan brought Drogheda back on level terms.