Thursday 14 December 2017

Second half surge helps Dublin cruise past Laois

Michael Darragh MacAuley, Dublin, shoots to score a goal for his side in the 55th minute
Michael Darragh MacAuley, Dublin, shoots to score a goal for his side in the 55th minute

Dublin produced a second half masterclass to ease their way past Laois by 2-21 to 0-16 at Croke Park.

The Dubs will face Wexford in their Leinster semi-final on June 29th after they outscored Laois by 13 points in the second half having trailed Tomas O'Flahartha's men by two at the break.

There will be some concern in the Dublin ranks after former player of the year Bernard Brogan was replaced after suffering a hamstring injury.

Underdogs Laois made a promising start  with Ross Munnelly scoring a beautiful brace after Alan Brogan had given Dublin an early lead.

Darren Strong fired over a fine point before David Conway and Stephen Cluxton swapped points.

Both sides had a very good goal chances denied by Johnny Cooper, Laois keeper Graham Brody and the woodwork twice.

Points from from Munnelly and Strong saw Laois were responded to by Cian O'Sullivan and Paul Flynn and they led 0-6 to 0-5 after 18 minutes.

James Finn and Paddy Andrews traded points before Donie Kingston, who was giving Rory O'Carroll a torrid time, scored a beauty with the outside of his right foot.

Bernard Brogan pulled up suddenly after 25 minutes and was replaced by Kevin McManamon after suffering a suspected hamstring injury.

Paul Flynn and Eoghan O'Gara got Dublin back level by the 33rd minute.

Munnelly's fourth point from play edged Laois back in front and a Kingston free followed that score.

Another tremendous save from Graham Brody kept the O'Moore men in front and they led by 0-10 to 0-8 at the break.

Dublin kicked four on the trot on the resumption with Kevin McManamon scoring points with either foot, Paul Flynn scoring and Cluxton sending a 45 over.

Sub Niall Donoher responded with a point for Laois but that was quickyl cancelled out by James McCarthy who bombed forward to score.

Dublin were in control in the 46th minute when Diarmuid Connolly nonchalantly found the net after good work from Philly McMahon.

Ross Munnelly knocked a free over but the Dublin had a second goal in the 54th minute as Michael Darragh MacAuley found the net to capitalise on poor defending from Laois.

Munnelly and Bryan Cullen exchanged scores before a Donie Kingston free put five in it once more.

Dean Rock came off the bench and kicked some impressive scores from placed balls and Cormac Costello knocked over some eyecatching points from play as Jim Gavin's side eased to a 11-point victory.

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