Thursday 22 March 2018

Murtagh and Dowdall lead charge for Clonkill

Leinster Club SHC quarter-final Clonkill 4-9 St Mullin's 0-9

Clonkill's Mark Keegan in action against St Mullin's Michael Walsh during the AIB Leinster GAA Hurling Senior Club Championship, Quarter-Final
Clonkill's Mark Keegan in action against St Mullin's Michael Walsh during the AIB Leinster GAA Hurling Senior Club Championship, Quarter-Final
St Mullins's John Walsh in action against Clonkill's Brendan Murtagh, Clonkill
St Mullin's Philip Connors is outnumbered by Clonkill's, from left, Tomás Egan, Eoin Price and John Fagan Newsdesk Newsdesk

Brendan Murtagh and Niall Dowdall contributed a combined 4-3 as Clonkill crushed St Mullins at Netwatch Cullen Park yesterday.

Carlow champions St Mullins started brightly and led 0-3 to 0-1 in the early stages, with frees from Marty Kavanagh (two) and James Doyle.

But the game changed completely once Westmeath champions Clonkill were awarded a 12th-minute penalty for a foul on corner-forward Anthony Price by Kevin Kehoe, which earned the netminder a yellow card.

Centre-back Murtagh came upfield and hammered the penalty to the net.

And Murtagh went on to record his sides's opening 2-1, recording a second goal from a close-range free on 19 minutes.

In total the No 6 contributed 2-2 from placed balls.

Dowdall struck for his team's third goal on 27 minutes as Clonkill stormed into a 3-4 to 0-7 interval lead.

When Dowdall again found the St Mullins net early in the second half it killed off any hopes of a revival for the hosts.

St Mullins never demonstrated the passion of their shock win over Mount Leinster Rangers in the Carlow final as the Westmeath men demonstrated a far greater level of skill and hunger.

It was cruise control for the visitors for the final 20 minutes as they coasted into a home provincial semi-final with Wexford's Oulart-The Ballagh.

St Mullins showed a lack of discipline, with six players being yellow-carded before midfielder Jack Kavanagh was shown a second yellow on 54 minutes to complete their misery.

This was a commanding Clonkill showing, as their teamwork proved too much for their outclassed opponents - it was indicative of the strides being made within Westmeath hurling.

Scorers - Clonkill: B Murtagh 2-2, N Dowdall 2-1, A Price (1f), A Dowdall 0-2 each, P Dowdall, C Thompson 0-1 each. St Mullins: M Kavanagh 0-6 (5fs), J Doyle 0-3 (1f).

Clonkill - G Healy; S Power, C Scally, J Fagan; L Folan, B Murtagh, A McGrath; P Dowdall, E Price; M Heffernan, Adam Price, P Walsh; A Dowdall, N Dowdall, Anthony Price. Subs: D Egerton for Walsh (h/t), C Thompson for P Dowdall (44), N Mitchell for N Dowdall (49), N Folan for Heffernan (56), M Keegan for E Price (56).

St Mullins - K Kehoe; P Doyle, J Doran, G Bennett; D Whelan, P Kehoe, G Coady; J Kavanagh, M Walsh; P Fortune, J Doyle, M Kavanagh; J Walsh, J Murphy, P Kehoe. Subs: P Connor for Fortune (37), J Murphy for P Kehoe (55), A Doyle for Whelan (58).

Ref - G McGrath (Dublin).


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