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Sheehan asserts Down control

DOWN easily outmuscled Mayo in a game with little at stake at Pairc Esler in Newry.

With Down's promotion hopes dashed and Mayo safe from the threat of relegation, a lack of intensity was evident throughout.

Still, Mayo began brightly and points from Darren McTigue, Derek McDonnell and Sean Regan pushed the visitors into a 0-6 to 0-3 lead. But with Conor Woods and Paul Sheehan in form, the home side took complete control of the game.

Down's dominance began to show on the scoreboard as points from Woods, Scott Nicholson, Sheehan and Paul Braniff allowed them to move into a 0-13 to 0-8 half-time lead.

The Mourne men dominated the early stages of the second half and when Daniel Toner pounced on a mistake by goalkeeper Donal O'Brien to score a goal for Down, the game effectively ended as a contest.

Man of the match: P Sheehan (Down)

Scorers – Down: P Braniff 0-6 (3fs), D Toner 1-2, P Sheehan 0-4, C Woods, S Nicholson 0-3 each, M Turley, E Clarke 0-2 each. Mayo: K Feeney 0-6 (5fs, 1 '65'), S Regan 0-4 (2fs), S Hoban 1-0, D McTigue 0-2, P O'Flynn, D McDonnell 0-1 each.

DOWN – S Keith 8; M Hughes 7, P Flynn 7, M Ennis 5; C Coulter 6, B Toner 7, P Hughes 6; A Savage 7, C Woods 8; S Nicholson 7, P Braniff 8, P Sheehan 8; D Toner 7, G Johnson 5, E Clarke 6. Subs: C O'Prey 6 for Ennis (25), M Conlon 6 for Coulter (48), C Bailie 6 for Sheehan (59), M Turley 7 forToner (61), D Hughes 5 for Savage (66).

MAYO – D O'Brien 5; A Brennan 6, S Morley 7, B Hunt 6; C Finn 6, P O'Flynn 7, C Charlton 6; P O'Grady 6, G Nolan 6; S Hoban 7, D McDonnell 7, N O'Malley 6; D McTigue 7, S Regan 8, K Feeney 8. Subs: F Lyons 6 for Grady (29), D Gallagher 6 for Malley (40), L Cribben 6 for Finn (53), P Barrett 5 for Feeney (60), S Markham 5 for McTigue (66).

Ref – P Murphy (Carlow)

Irish Independent