Tir Chonaill Gaels make it seven London titles in 11 years

Appearing in their first county final St Kiernan’s led by one point at the interval

The Tir Chonaill Gaels squad ahead of the 2014 All-Ireland quarter-final against Corofin. Photograph: Inpho

Tir Chonaill Gaels 3-10 St Kiernan’s 1-12

Tir Chonaill Gaels booked an All-Ireland quarter-final date with Clonmel Commercials after claiming their seventh county title in 11 years at a wind-swept Ruislip on Sunday.

The Greenford-based club edged a high-scoring epic in difficult conditions, a scoring burst of 1-3 in four minutes midway through the second half putting them on course for record 16th senior crown.

St Kiernan’s were appearing in their first county final and led by the minimum at the interval after recovering from the concession of two quick-fire goals. They fired five unanswered points in the final 15 minutes of the first half to lead 1-6 to 2-2.


However, the loss of former Laois forward Cathal Og Greene to a black card on 35 minutes dented their hopes and they faced an uphill task when Brian Duddy scored the defending champions' third goal on 44 minutes.

Tir Chonaill were able to keep their opponents at bay for the remainder of this high-scoring contest and their focus quickly turns to the visit of Clonmel to Ruislip in two weeks’ time.

“Last year we won the county title in August and had a 16-week break before the All-Ireland quarter-final so this is ideal preparation,” said Tir Chonaill Gaels manager Barney Breen.

“We’ll enjoy the occasion but we’re taking the game in two weeks’ time very seriously. We’re looking to cause a shock.”

Despite playing into a strong gale, Tir Chonaill started the stronger and Adrian Hanlon finished superbly past Brian O’Leary on 13 minutes for the opening goal.

Dunglon native Hanlon was black-carded moments later and St Kiernan’s hit back when Greene rose highest to punch to the net.

But it was Tir Chonaill who scored the third goal in as many minutes when man of the match Cathal Magee teed up Friel, who finished low past O’Leary.

Tir Chonaill didn’t trouble the scoreboard for the remainder of the first half and Kiernan’s capitalised, Kenneth Sweeney’s late free giving the north Londoners a slender lead at the break.

Sweeney extended their lead to two with his fourth point of the game but Kiernan’s were then blown away in a four-minute purple patch from their opponents.

Three points in as many minutes put the Gaels back in front and when Niall Boyle’s fisted attempt came back off the post, Duddy reacted quickest to goal from close range and put his side on course for victory.

Tir Chonaill Gaels: D Traynor; E McConville, P Butler, B McAtarnsey; G Magee, R Breen, M McCoy (0-1); M Gottsche (0-1 '45), L Gavaghan; A Askin, C Magee (0-2), N Boyle; B Duddy (1-0), S Friel (1-3, 0-2 frees), A Hanlon (1-1).

Subs: J McGrath (0-1f) for Hanlon (14 mins, bc), A McDermott for Gavaghan (35 mins, bc), A Carr for Duddy (48 mins), B Ross for G Magee (53 mins), B Collins for McAtarnsey (53 mins), R Kearney for Askin (60 mis).

St Kiernan's: B O'Leary; P Begley, I McGough, D Quinn; D Ryan (0-1), S Curran, G Lyons (0-1); T Waters, J Moran; M Mulholland, C Og Greene (1-0), L McKenna (0-1); A Moyles (0-2 1f), K Sweeney (0-4 (3f), M O'Donoghue (0-2).

Subs: M Callery for Waters (24, black card), P Finn (0-1) for Greene (36, black card), L Donoghue for Mulholland (51).

Referee: B Collins