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Fermanagh v Down: Game at a glance

Man of the match

Tommy McElroy (Fermanagh)

Ryan Carson took the TV gong but no one snapped at the heels of the Down men and drove his own team forward with the same consistency as the much under-rated Tommy McElroy. He also chipped in with an early point.

Talking point

Write Fermanagh off at your peril, it seems. They may not be the most attractive proposition but they are structured and spirited in what they do. They may also have unearthed a free-taker.

Turning point

Two points clear in the 53rd minute, Daniel Hughes gathered possession from a struggling Benny Coulter but snatched his shot wide. Down hadn't scored for seven minutes and a three-point cushion for the first time in the game could have opened things up. Within six minutes they were trailing.

Ref watch

John Bannon laid the law down early with a booking for Down's Paul McCumiskey for a high challenge. Aidan Carr's late red card may be the subject of an appeal.

What they said

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"The experience factor came through. It is as much about not doing anything stupid, not trying too hard, trying to do simple things, making sure you win the next ball, win the free, slow things down, use the ball well and getting the next score." Malachy O'Rourke (Fermanagh manager)

"There was a 15-minute period in the second half. I felt, at two points up, that we were comfortable. Had we been able to push on and get another point or two we might have went on to win the game. Ross Carr (Down manager)

Match statistics

Wides: Fermanagh 8 (4), Down 7 (3).

Frees: Fermanagh 33 (14), Down 25 (10).

Yellow cards: Fermanagh 1 (Ciaran McElroy 57), Down 2 (Paul McCumiskey 1, Stephen Kearney 32).

Red cards: Down 1 (Aidan Carr 71).

What next?

Fermanagh meet Cavan in an Ulster quarter-final on June 6, Down are into the first round of qualifiers to be played on July 4.


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