saints home and dry

Both sides beat testing Tymon conditions in an excellent spectacle

PHILIP Reid was reporting on The Open at St Andrews. He was a top footballer with St Monica's.

He used to write on the Dublin GAA scene for the good old Evening Press. On rainy days, and Mondays, he always said it was better to keep the notes to a minimum.

Over in Tymon North, Philip would have kept his ink dry, and the jotter in his pocket.

It simply poured. No sign of the Wimbledon roof. But there was no need to cover the court.

The players just ploughed on through the bleakness, and the rain drops. And they produced a worthy contest.

Beside the ground, the M50 evening traffic splashed on its merry way. Umbrellas circled the arena.

In the audience was Tommy Bassett. His son, Ian, kept a safe goal for Jude's.

He got ample protection. The home defence weren't handing out the jelly tots.

Paul Crennan is the Saints manager. His brother, Enda, was one of the finest footballers to have worn the club jersey.

The Templeogue club have a history of accomplished goalkeepers. One of them, the great Terry Orr, was in the building.

Jude's are in Division 9. They are a smashing outfit. Fins campaign in Division 11.

Fins are mostly a young squad. But there's also the dash of experience.

Mark McArdle is on their management crew. He was some player. And he's still doing it.

He emerged as the hero as Fins toppled Ballymun in the Junior B Football Championship.

Mark is better known as Biff. And he gave the side a rousing post-match team talk.

He didn't complicate it. Work hard, and there will be silver to polish.

The Swords side certainly gave the hosts a game of it, especially in the second half.

Jude's always had the edge, but they had to find something extra to pull away in the end.

Jude's led at the break by 1-7 to 0-5. Enda Maher got the early goal.

John Waldron curled over a gem from the left, while John O'Riordan was excellent from the frees.

John Behan is a commanding centre half-back. Bart Lehane prospered in the engine room, and Liam Coffey and Alan Mooney had energy in the boots.

Six minutes into the second period, Fins were right back in it as Greg Hyde's lofted delivery from the right found the net. Full-forward, Barry McArdle, was on hand to make sure it crossed the border.

Hyde had a fine hour. And Alan Rafferty. So did Darragh O Murchu, who showed his wisdom.

Michael Capru converted some neat frees, while half-back, Sean Hyland, has the speed of Jack McCaffrey.

Fins upped their tempo coming to the last chapter, and a goal from Colin Hayes sealed it.

Just before the end, the rain stopped. And the climate brightened. Philip Reid could have taken out his note-book. Jude Law.

p SCORERS - ST JUDE'S: J O'Riordan 0-5 (5f), E Maher, C Hayes 1-0 each, B Lehane, L Coffey, R Hyland, A Mooney 0-2 each, J Waldron 0-1. FINGALLIANS: D Rogers 0-4 (2f, 1 45), G Hyde 1-0, M Capru 0-3 (3f), R McKitterick, S Fennell, B McArdle 0-1 each.

p ST JUDE'S: I Bassett; R Doran, C Brady, G Russell; R Wallace, J Behan, E Mangan; N Lawlor, B Lehane; L Coffey, J O'Riordan, E Maher; R Hyland, J Waldron, A Mooney. SUBS: L Keogh for Hyland; C Hayes for Mooney; D Carroll for Waldron; R Howard for Brady.

p FINGALLIANS: P Taylor; F Clarke, A Rafferty, B Sheppard; S Hyland, R Groves, G McCallion; D Rogers, G Hyde; R McKitterick, D O Murchu, M Capru; S Fennell, B McArdle, S McCallion.

SUBS: D Myles for McArdle; S Tyrrell for Fennell; P Stratton for S McCallion.

p MENTORS - ST JUDE'S: P Crennan, C Kilcoyne, R Howard, A Gilleran. FINGALLIANS: D McKitterick, M McArdle, K Walzer.

p REF: Niall Murray (St Peregrine's).

p WIDES - ST JUDE'S: 8 (5+3); FINGALLIANS: 6 (3+3).

p CONDITIONS: Heavy rain for the hour - poor light, grey, dark sky but mild.

p PLAYER OF THE GAME: Alan Mooney (St Jude's).