Sunday 26 January 2020

O'Neill inspires Red Hands

Tyrone 3-18 Armagh 3-15

Tyrone's Michael O'Neill and Armagh's Jason Duffy. Photo: Sportsfile
Tyrone's Michael O'Neill and Armagh's Jason Duffy. Photo: Sportsfile

Holders Tyrone booked their place in the McKenna Cup semi-finals after a thriller in the Athletic Grounds.

Ronan O'Neill celebrated his return with two first-half goals, including a lobbed effort from 25 metres, helping his side to open out an eight-point lead.

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But late in the half, Rian O'Neill, who had already scored three points, netted with some fortune, from a 45-metre free.

A fast-moving opening period saw some spectacular scores, none better than Oisín O'Neill's effort from the sideline, while Niall Morgan denied Armagh's Greg McCabe a goal chance.

Niall Sludden banged in a third Tyrone goal, but back came Armagh for Aidan Nugent to win a penalty that Stefan Campbell slotted home.

A brilliant late goal from Rory Grugan brought Armagh back to within two points, but once again, Mickey Harte's men had the answer, and McCurry steered over two late points.

Scorers - Armagh: R O'Neill 1-3 (1-1f, 1 '45); R Grugan 1-3 (2f); S Campbell 1-1 (1-0 pen); C Turbitt 0-4 (2m); O O'Neill 0-2 each; P Hughes, J Duffy 0-1 each. Tyrone: R O'Neill 2-3; N Sludden 1-1; D McCurry 0-4 (2f); R McHugh 0-3 (2f); K McGeary 0-2; F Burns, L Rafferty, M McKernan C Grugan, K Coney 0-1 each.

Armagh - N Brady; C O'Neill, S Sheridan, A Forker; J McElroy, G McCabe, C McConville; N Grimley, O O'Neill; M Shields, S Campbell, A Nugent; C Turbitt, R O'Neill, J Duffy. Subs: R Grugan for McElroy (31), P Hughes for McConville (35), J Óg Burns for Sheridan (48), C McGeary for Duffy (65).

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Tyrone - N Morgan; C McLaughlin, R Brennan, N Kelly; M O'Neill, M McKernan M Murnaghan; B McDonnell, C Grugan; K Coney, N Sludden, K McGeary; R McHugh, F Burns, R O'Neill. Subs: L Rafferty for M O'Neill (26), C Kilpatrick for Grugan (ht), D McCurry for Coney (ht), D Mulgrew for Brennan (43), C Quinn for McKernan (48).

Ref - B Cassidy (Derry)

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