Jack Sheridan and James Burke the heroes as Kildare cruise to Christy Ring Cup crown
Kildare 3-19 London 1-11
A Jack Sheridan and James Burke inspired Kildare have powered their way comfortably to the Christy Ring Cup at the expense of London.
It took both teams some time to really settle into their stride, with Kildare’s James Burke proving the sharpest on the pitch in the early phases.
He picked up 0-5 of Kildare’s opening 0-6 which took over 20 minutes in coming due to the wastefulness of both sides in opposition territory.
By this stage, they had edged into a four-point lead with London depending heavily on Aaron Sheehan from placed balls.
A mini-revival took place between the 25th and 30th minutes as they pegged Kildare back to one before things took a sour turn for the Exiles.
First, Jack Sheridan fired the ball to the back of the net for Kildare from a tight angle before corner-back Lee Murphy received his marching orders before the resumption of play.
Now trailing by four again, London were also a man down for the whole second half and more.
That uphill battle was far too much and Kildare made their superiority tell all over the park in the second half.
Kildare’s Mark Grace received his marching orders in the 56th minute, but by that stage the Lilywhites had already soared into a 13-point lead thanks to Shane Ryan’s goal.
They continued to pick off scores from every angle and the final hammer blow for London came in the 66th minute when Jack Sheridan pounced for his second goal.
London picked up a consolation through Colin Nelson quickly after but there would be no comeback.
Burke received a standing ovation when he was replaced before the end, a testament to his towering performance and tally of 0-8.
Scorers: Kildare: J Burke 0-8 (3f), J Sheridan 2-2, S Ryan 1-0, P Divilly 0-3, E O’Neill 0-2, K Whelan, B Byrne, M Fitzgerald, M Delaney (f) 0-1 each
London: A Sheehan 0-6 (5f), C Nelson 1-0, K O’Loughlin 0-2 (2f), S Lawless, J Troy D O’Regan 0-1 each
Kildare: P McKenna; C Forde, J Doran, P Sullivan; E O’Neill, M Moloney, M Grace; N O Muineachain, B Byrne; J Burke, P Divilly, K Whelan; S Ryan, M Fitzgerald, J Sheridan. Subs: M Delaney for Ryan (50) B Deay for Whelan (55), M Purcell for J Burke (61) P Dermody for McKenna (70), B Cormack for Fitzgerald (70)
London: J Barrett; L Murphy, B Regan, D O’Regan; C McAlinden, K Reid, C Burke; F Collins, M Dwyer; H Vaughan, C Nelson, S Conlon; M Duggan, S Lawless, A Sheehan. Subs: K O’Loughlin for Vaughan (25), O Gately for S Conlon (h/t), D Moore for Reid (44), J Troy for Sheehan (46), R Murphy for Duggan (56)
Referee: Patrick Murphy (Carlow)