Lee Chin and Conor McDonald lead Wexford past Laois into quarter-finals

Duo hit 16 points between them as Keith Rossiter’s side triumph at O’Moore Park

Lee Chin of Wexford sees his shot blocked by Donnchadh Hartnett of Laois during the All-Ireland SHC preliminary quarter-final at Laois Hire O'Moore Park in Portlaoise. Photograph: James Lawlor/Inpho
All-Ireland SHC preliminary quarter-final: Laois 0-20 Wexford 0-32

Wexford are safely through to the All-Ireland quarter-finals after a convincing 12-point win over Laois in O’Moore Park.

Lee Chin and Conor McDonald starred for the visitors, combining for 16 points for Keith Rossiter’s side.

The Laois backline defended well on occasions to ensure they kept a clean sheet, while Aaron Dunphy’s scoring from dead balls was top quality.

The visitors took an early lead through Cian Byrne and McDonald, but they survived a scare in between when Jer Quinlan was hauled down for a penalty. However, Mark Fanning denied Enda Rowland with a save in his bottom left corner.


Dunphy and Stephen ‘Picky’ Maher combined for four points in the opening quarter for Laois but a couple of Chin frees kept the sides level and excellent scores from Conor Hearne and Simon Donohoe saw Wexford go ahead by two.

Aidan Corby struck for Laois with a long-range effort on 15 minutes, but Wexford would rampage for the next 10 minutes with seven unanswered points.

McDonald, Chin, Liam Óg McGovern and Cian Byrne were among the scorers in that run, with two attempts from McDonald out wide being the pick of the scores.

Laois saw a number of efforts go awry before Dunphy and Maher were on the mark again, but Chin hit back with another brace of frees as Wexford continued to apply pressure with impeccable passing from the backline into the forwards.

The final five minutes of the first half were tight with Laois arguably taking the upper hand with some dangerous attacks from Aidan Corby.

Dunphy slotted four frees in that period in response to Chin, McGovern and Damien Reck to make it 0-18 to 0-11 at the break.

The opening scores of the second half came from Rory O’Connor and Chin to move Wexford nine clear.

A trio of frees split the posts from Dunphy early in the half, but Rossiter’s side stayed ticking at the other end through Chin, McDonald and Cian Byrne.

A flurry of five scores in a row for Wexford saw them go 13 points ahead by the 55th minute as the O’Moore men struggled to get out of their own half for that 10 minute period.

A mini resurgence from Willie Maher’s charges saw them rack up three points from play on the trot from Dunphy, Cody Comerford and an epic effort from Ryan Mullaney after intercepting a pass on his own 21 and charging up field.

After a seven-minute scoreless period for Wexford they found their rhythm once again and slotted points through Hearne and McDonald before a brace of frees from Séamus Casey.

Laois had a couple of chances at goal late on denied and had to settle for a trio of Dunphy frees before Hearne’s third of the game sealed the win for the visitors.

LAOIS: Enda Rowland; Diarmaid Conway, Ryan Mullaney (0-1), Donnchadh Hartnett; Ian Shanahan, Podge Delaney, Tom Cuddy; Aidan Corby (0-1), David Dooley; Gearoid Lynch, Paddy Purcell, Aaron Dunphy (0-15, 0-12f, 0-1 65); Jer Quinlan, Stephen Maher (0-2), Tomas Keyes.

Subs: Fiachra C-Fennell for Conway (20 mins, inj); Cody Comerford (0-1) for Lynch (32); Martin Phelan for Maher (51); Ross King for Quinlan (57); John Lennon for Corby (62).

WEXFORD: Mark Fanning; Shane Reck, Conor Foley, Eoin Ryan; Simon Donohoe (0-1), Damien Reck (0-1), Matthew O’Hanlon; Conor Hearne (0-3), Tomas Kinsella (0-1); Liam Óg McGovern (0-3), Lee Chin (0-11, 0-5f, 0-2 65), Charlie McGuckin; Cian Byrne (0-3), Conor McDonald (0-5), Rory O’Connor (0-1).

Subs: Corey Dunbar Byrne (0-1) for Kinsella (45 mins); Cathal Dunbar for Byrne (50); Kevin Foley for Chin (56); Séamus Casey (0-2, 2f) for McGovern (67); Darragh Carley for McDonald (70).

Referee: Shane Hynes (Galway).