Feeney the difference for Mayo
Mayo 0-20 Armagh 1-14
Mayo survived a late burst from Armagh in Castlebar to repeat their league win over the northerners and kick-start their Christy Ring bid on a positive note.
Despite being well on top in the first half Mayo had just a three-point advantage at the interval, 0-11 to 1-5.
Artie McGuiness scored the only goal of the match 10 minutes from the interval, to fire the visitors into a narrow lead (1-5 to 0-7).
The goal acted as a wake-up call for Mayo, who finished the half with a flurry of points from Declan Gallagher, Kenny Feeney (2) and Gary Nolan to regain control of the game.
Declan Coulter helped himself to four points in the first half to keep Armagh very much in the game
Feeney adopted a much deeper role in the second half and it was to prove a pivotal move.
However, it was Armagh who restarted the game with back-to-back points from Conor McKee and Kieran McKernan.
Nevertheless, Feeney's accuracy from frees and from play – he ended with 0-12 – was to swing this game in favour of the home side as they opened up a seven-point lead.
That was enough to withstand Armag'sh rally.
SCORERS – Mayo: K Feeney 0-12 (7fs), D Gallagher (3f), F Boland 0-3 each, G Nolan, D McDonnell 0-1 each. Armagh: D Coulter 0-8 (7fs), A McGuiness 1-1, C Corvan 0-2, F Bradley, K McKernan, C McKee 0-1 each.
MAYO – D O'Brien; A Brennan, A Connolly, D Kenny; D Gallagher, P O'Flynn, P Barrett; C Charlton, B Higgins; G Nolan, D McDonnell, F Boland; K Feeney, S Regan, B Hunt. Subs: K Keena for Nolan (h-t), D McTigue for Keena (54), S Morley for Barrett (67), J Kennedy for Charlton (69).
ARMAGH – S Doherty; C Devlin, C Clifford, M Garvey; S Reneghan, N Curry, P Gaffney; F Bradley, K McKernan; C Carvill, D Coulter, N Green; C Corvan, E McGuinness, A McGuinness. Subs: C McKee for Renaghan (ht), O Curry for E McGuinness (54), P Hughes for McKernan (59), L Woods for A McGuinness (64).
REF – D O'Driscoll (Limerick).