Sunday 19 November 2017

Dublin and Wexford must go to a replay after a dour stalemate

Dublin's Conor McCormack in action against Tomas Waters
Dublin's Conor McCormack in action against Tomas Waters

Tonight’s clash Leinster SHC quarter-final featured two teams desperate for a win – and in the end both were disappointed.

The game was marred by countless wides, mistakes, fumbles and misses but it was entertaining, intense and leaves both sides with much to work on ahead of the replay in Parnell Park at 7.0 next Saturday.

Dublin hit 14 wides and they’ll rue a stat like that. Wexford, however, were bossed out of it in the first half but managed to stay afloat until they stormed into the game after the restart. They can thank Jack Guiney, who got the goal, Rory Jacob and Gareth Sinnott for their scores while the defence played well as a unit.

Dublin’s backs were strong throughout but Boland’s free-taking was mostly sublime. We look forward to next weekend for on this evidence there is not much to separate the two.

Dublin lined out without any personnel changes but they did drop Conal Keaney into the half back line and moved Liam Rushe to wing back. They totally dominated this sector but the downside was their presence in attack was missed.

The tone was set from the start. Wexford found it very hard to feed their dangerous looking inside forward line. Winning primary ball was a task that they found difficult further out the field. To make life tougher the home side gave away seven first half frees and Joey Boland, who started at centre forward, pointed six of them.

Dublin, meanwhile, looked very impressive at the start. Their touch was better; they crowded out Wexford all over the pitch and saw a lot more of the ball. Their only problem was they could never stretch more than four points ahead of their rivals.

An Eamon Dillon goal near the end after superb spadework from Mark Schutte looked to have sealed the deal, but Wexford struck back with another equaliser from the hard-working and effective Sinnott. Paul Ryan put Daly’s men in front again but with time up it was fitting that Guiney hit the equaliser once more with a free just inside the ‘45.

Irish Independent

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