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Crokes see off plucky St Pat's

kilmacud crokes 2-17

st patrick's (P) 1-15

A LOVELY evening for hurling. Hardly a whisper of a breeze. The great Larry Ryan, the King of Kilmacud, was at ringside in O'Toole Park last night.

The championship draw hadn't been kind to Patrick's. They met the holders, Ballyboden, two weeks ago, and now it was the champions of 2012.

They gave Boden a run for it, and they did the same here. Another mighty show that was cemented in Glenaulin grit.

They had Crokes worried, especially when Pat's led by five points midway through the second period. It took all of Kilmacud's conviction and craft to get out with the win.

It was level at the break – 1-5 for Crokes and 0-8 for Pat's. Kilmacud had led for most of the way in the opening period.

Ryan O'Dwyer got their goal at the pitch and putt end in the 10th minute. He made the most of a sharp pass from the busy Sean McGrath.

One of the best scores of the half had come from O'Dwyer, a player with a deep bag of tricks. Wide on the right in front of the terrace, he made space by a clever flick over the heads of his opponents before sending over a delicious email.

The Palmerstown side began to settle more into the boots. Shane Stapleton was finding the distance, and it was his marvellous sideline that put Pat's ahead on 27 minutes. McGrath ensured parity at the tea.

Five minutes into the second period, Garbhan Gallagher's close-in goal, following a pass from Dave O'Hanlon, lifted Pat's once more. They were playing with real belief.

Inspired by O'Dwyer, the Stillorgan side equalised on 52 minutes. They then hit three points on the bounce. And Barry O'Rorke's 59th-minute goal eventually eased what had been an uncomfortable journey.

Two wins from two for Crokes – two defeats for Pat's, but that only tells half the story.

Scorers – Kilmacud Crokes: R O'Dwyer 1-7 (0-2f), B O'Rorke 1-3, S McGrath 0-3 (2f), O O'Rorke 0-2, J Doughan, D Mulligan 0-1 each.

St Patrick's (P): S Stapleton 0-12 (7f, 1s), G Gallagher 1-0, B O'Hanlon, D O'Hanlon, I Burke 0-1 each.

Kilmacud Crokes: M Collins; B O'Carroll, Rory O'Carroll, J Doughan; C MacGabhann, R Murphy, B Mulligan; D Mulligan, N O'Riordan; S McGrath, D Kelly, R O'Dwyer; C Conway, J Burke, B O'Rorke. Subs: Ross O'Carroll for O' Riordan (ht); O O'Rorke for Burke (37); N Corcoran for McGrath (inj, 48); J Clinton for B O'Carroll (59).

St Patrick's (P): D Gallagher; G Kelly, B O'Hanlon, C Dolan; K Ward, P Keaney, J McGauley; N Sweeney, D O'Hanlon; S Stapleton, L Rush, I Burke; A Glennon, B Gilbert, G Gallagher. Subs: J Walker for Burke (54); D Mooney for Sweeney (58).

REF: P Carr (Round Towers)