Bray climb off the bottom with win over Limerick
First win in 14 games came courtesy of captain Danny O’Connor at the Carlisle Grounds
Bray captain Danny O’Connor scored the only goal against Limerick. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho
Bray Wanderers 1 Limerick 0: Bray Wanderers climbed off the bottom of the Premier Division table on Sunday, with their first win in 14 league games. A lone first half goal by skipper Danny O’Connor gave them victory over Limerick at the Carlisle Grounds .
The Seagulls are now three points clear of Shelbourne with two matches remaining, against Bohemians (away) and Dundalk (home).
Bray had a chance to open their account on 14 minutes after a foul by central defender Stephen Folan on Seagulls winger Marty Waters at the edge of the box, but the resulting free by veteran striker Jason Byrne was blocked by a Limerick wall of defenders.
Limerick then went close when a corner by Carel Tiofack was headed just wide by central defender Samuel Oji.
Bray should really have taken the lead on 22 minutes when a midfield ball from John Mulroy found Ismahil Akinade on the left and he set up the chance, only for Byrne to scoop his effort wide of the target.
Limerick did have a chance on 36 minutes when a dangerous low cross from the right by Tiofack was blazed over the bar from close range by striker Rory Gaffney.
Bray deservedly took the lead in the second minute of first half added time after Folan was yellow-carded for a foul on Akinade. The resulting free by Waters was powerfully headed home into the bottom corner of the net by O’Connor.
John Mulroy should really have stretched Bray’s lead early in the second half only to shoot wide of the target after good approach work by Kevin Maher and Byrne.
Limerick suffered a set-back on 58 minutes when Oji was sent off for a second bookable offence, a foul on Akinade after a corner by David O’Leary on the left. Two minutes later, manager Stuart Taylor was ordered from the dug-out by Cork referee Graham Kelly after an altercation with the fourth official.
David Webster set up a chance for Byrne on 72 minutes but the normally reliable striker again shot wide of target as ten man Limerick wilted in the closing stages.
Bray did have a let-off on 85 minutes when a long range free by O’Leary rebounded off the upright with goalkeeper Darren Quigley unsighted.
Bray Wanderers: Quigley; Webster, S.O’Connor, D.O’Connor, Zambra, Akinade, K.O’Connor, Maher (Dempsey 85), Waters (Knight 82); Mulroy, Byrne (Doyle 89).
Limerick: Cusack; Nzuzi (Whitehead 86), Oji, Folan, Williams; Tiofack (Kelly 72), O’Leary, Gamble, Hughes, Rainsford (Sheedy 43); Gaffney.
Referee: Graham Kelly (Cork).