Thursday 23 May 2019

'They orchestrated the second half' - James Horan singles out Dublin's key man in Tyrone win

21 July 2018; Ciaran Kilkenny of Dublin in action against Ronan McNamee, left, and Conor Meyler of Tyrone during the GAA Football All-Ireland Senior Championship Quarter-Final Group 2 Phase 2 match between Tyrone and Dublin at Healy Park in Omagh, Tyrone. Photo by Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile
21 July 2018; Ciaran Kilkenny of Dublin in action against Ronan McNamee, left, and Conor Meyler of Tyrone during the GAA Football All-Ireland Senior Championship Quarter-Final Group 2 Phase 2 match between Tyrone and Dublin at Healy Park in Omagh, Tyrone. Photo by Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile

Former Mayo manager James Horan hailed Ciaran Kilkenny's performance as Dublin edged Tyrone in a narrow contest in Omagh tonight.

Dublin won their second game of the Super 8s to advance to their ninth straight All-Ireland semi-final, with two-time All Star Kilkenny getting on plenty of ball in attack to work a number of scores for Jim Gavin's side.

Speaking on Sky Sports after the game, Horan singled out Kilkenny for praise as a player who showed composure in the second half when the game was in the melting pot.

"Dublin, through Ciaran Kilkenny mainly, orchestrated the second half," Horan said.

"Everything started to go through Ciaran Kilkenny. You could see him signalling that every time Dublin were attacking, he wanted the ball. He had a lot of possession. He was dictating play, he was kicking scores, and he just managed to keep Dublin ahead."

Although Dublin emerged with the win, Tyrone gave a much better account of themselves than in last year's All-Ireland semi-final defeat. Mickey Harte's men reduced the gap from six points midway through the second half to two entering injury time, and missed a free to narrow the deficit to a single point.

Appearing alongside Horan, All-Ireland-winning manager Jim McGuinness said that Tyrone can be reasonably happy with their night's work despite the defeat.

"Tyrone never gave up and they made it a battle the whole way through," McGuinness said.

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"Tyrone should be very happy with their night's work. They have closed the gap on Dublin. They kept battling away. That is what Mickey Harte wanted and that's what the supporters wanted."

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