Unbeaten Tipp escape Mullingar
Westmeath 0-11 Tipperary 1-8
Tipperary maintained their unbeaten start in Mullingar yesterday as hosts Westmeath picked up their first point of the campaign in a game which only came to life in the second half.
The first half was a scrappy affair with both sides guilty of poor shooting and an array of loose passing.
One ambitious cross-field pass from Westmeath's Ray Connellan on 15 minutes was intercepted by Josh Keane. He fed Peter Acheson, who teed up Robbie Kiely for the only goal of the contest, to put the visitors ahead by 1-1 to 0-2.
The home team had more possession during the remainder of the half but their forwards lacked conviction.
Two converted frees by John Heslin, either side of a point from centre half-back Kieran Martin, nudged Westmeath ahead but Shane Leahy equalised with a great point seconds before half-time.
The sides were tied at the interval, 0-5 to 1-2.
The home team started the second half brightly with corner-forward John Connellan pointing twice and team-mate John Egan adding another. Tipperary quickly equalised, two of their points coming within a minute from midfielder Alan Maloney and the other from a free by Conor Sweeney. Neither side was able to pull away, but Westmeath looked the likely winners.
However, converted frees from Michael Quinlivan and Maloney levelled the contest.
Six minutes' added time was played with Paul Sharry narrowly missing a last-gasp '45' to win for Westmeath.
SCORERS - Westmeath: K Martin, J Heslin (3f), J Connellan 0-3 each; J Egan, S Dempsey 0-1 each.
Tipperary: R Kiely 1-0; A Maloney 0-3(1f); C Sweeney (2f) 0-2; S Leahy, B Fox, M Quinlivan (f) 0-1 each.
Westmeath -D Quinn 7; K Daly 6, F Boyle 6, K Maguire 6; P Holloway 6, K Martin 8, J Dolan 6; D Corroon 5, R Connellan 6; C McCormack 5, J Heslin 7, J Egan 6; J Connellan 7, P Sharry 7, S Dempsey 6. Subs: D Daly 5 for Egan (51), A Stone n/r for McCormack (64), P Greville n/r for Dempsey (66), R Foley n/r for Martin (69).
Tipperary: E Comerford 6; C McDonald 6, A Campbell 6, C O'Shaughnessy 5; J Feehan 6, R Kiely 8, S Leahy 7; A Maloney 7, M Dunne 5; B Fox 7, P Acheson 6, J Keane 5; C Sweeney 6, M Quinlivan 6, N O'Donovan 5. Subs: J Lonergan 7 for Keane (34), I Fahey 6 for O'Donovan (34), J O'Callaghan 6 for O'Shaughnessy (inj, 44), L Casey 5 for Fahey (inj, 53), B Hewitt n/r for Sweeney (61), D Butler n/r for Dunne (64).
Ref- F Barry (Kildare).