Thursday 21 November 2019

Clinical Kelly fires St Patrick's past brave Arklow

Wicklow SFC final: St Patrick's 0-9 Arklow GB 0-7

St Patrick’s captain Stephen Duffy. Photo: Garry O'Neill/Sportsfile
St Patrick’s captain Stephen Duffy. Photo: Garry O'Neill/Sportsfile

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St Patrick's retained the Wicklow football title with a narrow victory over AGB at Aughrim.

Arklow were appearing in their first final in more than half a century, and they started sluggishly. They could count themselves lucky to be only two points behind at half-time as they just did not turn up for most of the opening 30 minutes.

St Patrick's opened a 0-5 to 0-1 lead in the first 20 minutes, with free-taker Tommy Kelly picking off three of those scores as AGB were guilty of persistent fouling.

Arklow moved Ciarán Hyland from centre back to the full-back line to police danger man Kelly, and he played an important role in stopping Pat's stealing two goals.

After John Crowe, Dean Healy and company dominated for long periods, AGB began to get their act together. Points by Philip Healy and Darragh Fitzgerald left just two points, 0-5 to 0-3, in it at the break.

Throughout the year AGB built up a reputation for being the comeback kids. Points by Cathal Kelleher, Philip Healy and brilliant Andy Maher brought them level with Pat's at 0-6 each after 40 minutes.

Wayne Doyle of St Patrick's in action against Cathal Kelleher of Arklow Geraldines Ballymoney. Photo: Garry O'Neill/Sportsfile
Wayne Doyle of St Patrick's in action against Cathal Kelleher of Arklow Geraldines Ballymoney. Photo: Garry O'Neill/Sportsfile

Scoring was not a strong feature of this game. However, Padge McWalter and Stephen Duffy edged St Pat's 0-8 to 0-6 ahead with ten minutes left.

Ciarán Hyland surged upfield for an Arklow point to put the result back in the melting pot. However, in injury time, Tommy Kelly delivered the insurance point for Pat's.

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Scorers - St Pat's: T Kelly 0-4; S Duffy 0-2; P McWalter, B Doyle, C Ffrench 0-1 each. AGB: P Healy 0-3; C Kelleher, C Hyland, A Maher, D Fitzgerald 0-1 each.

St Patrick's - S Doyle, S Murley, M Traynor, W Doyle, C Doyle, C Ffrench, P O'Keane, D Healy, J Crowe, P O'Brien, P McWalter, C McGettigan, P Earls, S Duffy, T Kelly. Subs: B Doyle for P Earls (4), J Pettigrew for B Doyle (44), J Delahunt for C McGettigan (44).

Dean Healy of St Patrick's in action against Ciaran Hyland, left, James Tyrrell, centre, and Mervyn Travers of Arklow Geraldines Ballymoney. Photo: Garry O'Neill/Sportsfile
Dean Healy of St Patrick's in action against Ciaran Hyland, left, James Tyrrell, centre, and Mervyn Travers of Arklow Geraldines Ballymoney. Photo: Garry O'Neill/Sportsfile

AGB - M Travers, T Maher, J Tyrrell, J Hamilton, K Kirwan, C Hyland, A Maher , C O'Brien, S Hurley, C O'Shea, P Gleeson, D Fitzgerald, C Kelleher, P Healy, JP Hurley. Subs: C O'Shea for P Gleeson (h-t), D McBride for Cormac O'Shea (49), T McBride for P Healy (53), C Kelly for J Tyrrell (55), P Hempenstall for C Kelleher (56).

Ref - Anthony Nolan (Baltinglass).

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