Meath look all set for Division 1 return after victory in Clare

Royal County dominate after the break despite playing into the wind

Clare 1-7 Meath 1-12

Division 1 league football beckons for Meath in 2020 after this win over Clare at Cusack Park in Ennis on Sunday.

Postponed from the previous day due to a waterlogged pitch, Meath, who travelled to Clare on Friday and remained in the area on Saturday, delivered a strong second-half performance which proved decisive.

A Meath win didn’t look likely at half-time as they led by just the minimum margin, 0-8 to 1-4, after playing with the aid of a very strong wind.

However, they got the upperhand in the second half and struck for a goal with 20 minutes to play.

Such was Meath’s dominance after the break that they limited the home side to just three points, all of which came from frees.

Meath made the better start and had 0-4 on the scoreboard after just six minutes. A further two minutes elapsed before Clare opened their account but from there on the home side dominated the opening half and took the lead six minutes from the half-time whistle when Seán O’Donoghue, whose high fielding was one of the highlights of the tie, found the net.

CLARE: E Tubridy; K Harnett, C Brennan, G Kelly; S O'Donoghue (1-0), A Fitzgerald, D Ryan; G Brennan, C O'Connor; K Malone, C Cleary (0-5, five frees), J Malone; C O'Dea, D Tubridy (0-1, free), G Cooney (0-1).

Subs: K Sexton for K Malone; S Collins for Ryan; E Courtney for Tubridy.

MEATH: A Colgan; S Lavin, C McGill, R Ryan; J McEntee, D Keogan, S Gallagher; B Menton, S McEntee; C O'Sullivan (0-3), E Devine (0-1), D Campion (0-1); B McMahon, M Newman (0-4, free) T O'Reilly (0-2).

Subs: B Dardis (0-1) for S McEntee (inj, 10 mins), A Flanagan for Devine, G Reilly (1-0) for Campion, P Harnan for McMahon, E Lynch for O'Sullivan.

Referee: B Tiernan (Dublin).

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