Talbot on double as mighty 'Mun snare silverware


Ballymun Kickhams pulled away in the second-half to deservedly claim the Dublin Under 16 'B' Football Championship title after a 3-13 to 1-7 win over Naomh Mearnóg at Blakestown Road last Saturday afternoon.

The panel is in essence based on Ballymun's All-Ireland Féile (U14) winning team of last year and they showed all their qualities from the outset, opening up a six-point lead within the first 10 minutes.

Jamie Talbot pounced for a superb goal for Kickhams during that early period of supremacy while points ensued from Paddy Small and Dillon Keating before Naomh Mearnóg enjoyed a purple patch of their own.

Their revival was kickstarted by a couple of Shane Nangle points and a goal from Killian O'Driscoll left the Portmarnock club just a point in arrears by the 25th minute and they could well have led but for two excellent saves from Ballymun's netminder and captain Eric Cumberton.

Crucially, Kickhams finished the half on a high with Keating plundering a second goal as Paddy Christie's charges enjoyed a slightly flattering 2-5 to 1-3 interval lead.

The defensive efforts of Barry Sherman and Eoin Shiels, in addition to Chris Farrelly's heroic efforts in midfield, allowed Mearnóg to stay in touch upon the restart, but gradually their opponents began to build on their lead through scores by Small, Ryan Swan and Lee Lindsay.

Talbot's second goal of the day effectively settled the contest with Ballymun closing up shop at the opposite end thanks to massive contributions from Conor Kavanagh, Leon Young and Dean O'Brien to secure a deserved 12-point win.

"My side put in a great effort all year and they did so again today. Ballymun Kickhams are a very fine team and they were very well coached," said Mearnóg's manager Michael Shortall.

Plunkett's go up a gear for glory


A strong attacking performance helped St Oliver Plunkett's/ Eoghan Ruadh overcome a battling Ballyfermot De la Salle by 3-13 to 1-5 in their Dublin U16 'C' Football Championship Final at Blakestown Road last Saturday morning.

With the tie delicately poised at 1-4 apiece at the break, Plunkett's took advantage of a strong breeze upon the turnaround to eventually pull clear with all six starting forwards finding the scoresheet.

Ballyfermot De La Salle used the elements to open up an early two-point lead in a low-scoring half dominated by defences with Ballyfermot's Daniel Fitzgerald controlling matters superbly for his side.

Despite being under constant pressure, the Plunkett's full-back line of Conor Stone, captain Ciarán Shannon and Stephen Lynch excelled over the hour to keep their side in the hunt and they received a further boost when Seán French struck a 26th-minute goal.

Ballyfermot responded immediately through Alex O'Callaghan's calmly converted penalty to restore parity, which was the least their first-half efforts would have deserved.

The second-half was in complete contrast to the opening 30 minutes as the Navan Road side pulled clear despite the best efforts of Rory Casserley and Warren Kershaw.

Conor Breslin chipped in with 2-4 as the match began to slip from Ballyfermot's grasp while further points from Dara O'Shea, French, Brian McDonald and Ryan Carrick ensured a memorable afternoon for Plunkett's manager Kevin Lynch.

"It was a very good game throughout and this is the first major trophy that this particular team has ever won so we're delighted," said Lynch.

Ballyfermot manager Edward Madden was equally proud of his charges, despite the result.

"It was a solid effort from the lads and I could not fault a single player out there," he said.