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Ryan's 'lucky generals' march on

Westmeath 2-12 Kerry 0-15

Westmeath's Niall O’Brien scoring on 16 minutes to cancel out an early Kerry 0-3 to 0-1 lead.. Photo: Sam Barnes/Sportsfile
Westmeath's Niall O’Brien scoring on 16 minutes to cancel out an early Kerry 0-3 to 0-1 lead.. Photo: Sam Barnes/Sportsfile

Independent.ie Sportsdesk

Westmeath scored three points in injury-time at Austin Stack Park to maintain their 100pc record and end Kerry's hopes of advancing.

Westmeath manager Michael Ryan summed it up afterwards, saying: "If you were a neutral on the terrace you would wonder did anyone want to win the game because both teams were missing chances. But while we were lucky in the end to win, it's a case of 'give me a lucky general any day of the week'."

Kerry boss Fintan O'Connor was crestfallen as it's unlikely they will make the final now.

"It came down to the last 15 minutes. We were in the game right to the end, but did not finish it out, like what happened in Carlow, so we are very disappointed," he said.

A goal in each half by Westmeath were the defining moments, with Niall O'Brien scoring on 16 minutes to cancel out an early Kerry 0-3 to 0-1 lead. Points from Podge Boyle, Barry O'Mahony and Shane Nolan it, but points from O'Brien and sub Joey Boyle ensured that Westmeath had their noses on front at half-time, leading 1-7 to 0-8

Kerry went two clear thanks to great scores from Daithí Griffin and Jack Goulding, but Westmeath struck for a second goal when sub Darragh Clinton blasted home in the 54th minute.

Jordan Conway gave Kerry the lead in the 69th minute, but Aonghus Clarke levelled in the 70th minute, before Bryan Murphy picked up a second yellow. Allan Devine pointed the resultant free and when the Kerry keeper miscued his puck-out straight to Devine, he fired over again. Along with a late Cormac Boyle effort, it got the job done.

Scorers - Westmeath: A Devine 0-7 (6f), N O'Brien 1-2, D Clinton 1-0, J Boyle, C Boyle, and A Clarke 0-1 each. Kerry: D Griffin, P Boyle and S Conway (2f) 0-3 each, B O'Mahony 0-2, J O'Connor, S Nolan, J Goulding and J Conway 0-1 each.

Kerry - M Stackpoole 6 ; S Weir 7 , J Buckley 7 , B Murphy 7; B Barrett 7 , D Collins 7 J O'Connor7 ; S Nolan 6 , B O'Leary 6, D Griffin 8 , M Boyle 8 , B O'Mahony 7 , J Goulding 6 , P Boyle 7 , S Conway 7. Subs: J Conway7 for S Nolan (49), D O'Carroll 6 for J Goulding (69)

Westmeath - P Carroll 7 ; S Power 8 , T Doyle 9 , G Greville 8 ; L Varley 6 , P Greville 7 , D McNicholas 6 ; E Price 7 , C Boyle 6 ; C Doyle 6 , R Greville 6 , A Clarke 7 ; N O'Brien 8 , N Mitchell 7, A Devine 8. Subs: J Boyle 8 for C Boyle (21), D Clinton 8 for R Greville (50), J Gilligan7 for E Price (58),

Ref - C McAllister (Cork)

Irish Independent

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