Pat Gilroy’s Dublin hammer Antrim to set up Wexford semi-final

Walsh Cup: Kilkenny too strong for Kildare in their first competitive hurling meeting

Dublin 4-16 Antrim 0-17

A weekend that began with a crash, bang in Thurles on Saturday ended for Dublin with a walloping of Antrim at Parnell Park to secure their Bord na Mona Walsh Cup semi-final place.

Pat Gilroy’s side were briefly overrun early on, falling five points down, which was probably due to many of the players featuring in Saturday’s 1-26 to 0-12 defeat to Tipperary.

But after steadying the ship with their first of four goals, from Paul Crummey in the seventh minute, they quickly assumed control of the game and ran out easy winners.


Having similarly defeated Meath with little fuss on Wednesday evening, the standard will now rise sharply for Gilroy's side when they play Davy Fitzgerald's Wexford in the semi-finals next Sunday.

Gilroy has mixed his teams with new, fringe and established talent so far and recalled ex-captain Johnny McCaffrey lasted the entire game here and scored a point.

Robbie Mahon, Paul Winters and Alan Moore formed a new look and, crucially, potent full-forward line with 3-11 between them, Moore swooping for two second-half goals.

Former All-Star Danny Suctliffe was listed to play and featured against Tipp following two seasons out though his number 10 jersey was worn by Cillian Costello.

Dublin will also play Waterford in a midweek challenge before the Wexford game with their medium-term focus on the Allianz league which begins at home to Offaly on January 27th.

Antrim’s interest in the competition is over having previously lost to Meath though 17 points was a decent return in the Capital.

Free-taker Neil McManus hit 11 of those as they trailed 2-9 to 0-9 at half-time before Moore’s 40th and 44th minute majors for Dublin which killed the contest.

Dublin: G Maguire; P Smyth, B O'Carroll, C Hendricken; S Barrett, D Kelly, C Crummey; J McCaffrey (0-1), T Connolly; C Costello, D Gray (0-3), P Crummey (1-1); R Mahon (0-6, 0-2f, 0-1 65), P Winters (1-4, 0-3f), A Moore (2-1).

Subs: R Smith for Connolly (26), C McBride for Winters (45), S O Riain for P Crummey (49), C Ryan for Costello (51).

Antrim: C O'Connell; D Kearney, A Graffin, S Rooney; C McKinley, J Maskey, J Dillon; N Elliott (0-1), C Johnston (0-2); N McManus (0-11, 0-10f), G Walsh (0-1), C McCann (0-1); J McNaughton, C Carson, C Clarke (0-1, 0-1f).

Subs: E O’Neill for Carson (49), J Connolly for Clarke (49), M Connolly for McCann (57), C Boyd for Dillon (65), D McCloskey for Elliott (71).

Referee: P Murphy (Carlow).

Kilkenny 3-18 Kildare 0-8

John Walsh was the man of the moment as Kilkenny stormed their way into a Walsh Cup semi-final meeting with Offaly next weekend.

The Mullinavat player hit 2-6 as the Cats scorched past Kildare in the first ever competitive meeting in hurling between the two Leinster counties.

An early charge saw Kilkenny go 0-6 to 0-0 ahead but Kildare closed that back down to within four by half-time (0-9 to 0-5).

However, early second half goals from Bill Sheehan and Walsh left Kilkenny well in the driving seat with 47 minutes on the clock (2-14 to 0-5), and from there on in there was no way back for the visitors.

Kilkenny: Darren Brennan; Tommy Walsh, Conor Delaney, Ryan Bergin; Simon Aylward, Conor O'Shea, Mark Mansfield (0-2); Ollie Walsh (0-2), Huw Lawlor; Liam Blanchfield (0-1), Colum Prendiville (0-1), Martin Keoghan (0-1); Kevin Farrell (0-2), Billy Ryan (0-1), John Walsh (2-6).

Subs: Ger Malone for C Prendiville; Joey Holden for R Bergin; Bill Sheehan (1-1) for K Farrell; Luke Scanlon for H Lawlor; Sean Morrissey (0-1) for O Walsh.

Kildare: Paul Dermody; Dylan Brereton, John Doran, Paul Sullivan; Eanna O'Neill (0-1), Mark Moloney, Mark Grace; Paul Divilly (0-6), Brian Byrne'; Chris Bonus, James Burke, Kevin Whelan; Jack Sheridan, Martin Fitzgerald (0-1), Shane Ryan.

Subs: Richard Ryan for K Whelan; Cian Forde for D Brereton; Paul McKenna for P Dermody; Cathal Dowling for J Sheridan; Sean Galney for C Bonus.

Referee: Gearoid McGrath (Wexford).

Offaly 1-18 Westmeath 0-18

A goal by Oisín Kelly in the 12th minute proved to be the decisive score as Offaly edged out Westmeath in Sunday afternoon’s Walsh Cup game in Mullingar.

The wind-assisted home team led by 0-5 to 0-3 when Kelly availed of loose Westmeath defending to find the net. Six unanswered points before the break though left Westmeath ahead by 0-14 to 1-7 at half-time.

Offaly introduced the experienced Shane Dooley for the second half and his seven converted frees were crucial to the outcome. Westmeath were a goal in arrears after an hour when Killian Doyle was narrowly wide from a penalty stroke. That miss proved costly as Offaly advanced to the semi-finals by a five-point aggregate margin over the two legs.

Offaly: C Slevin; D O'Toole, S Gardiner, T Spain; J Quinn, D Doughan, D Shortt; D King (0-2), S Kinsella (0-2); D Egan (0-2, two frees), C Mahon, C Egan; C Gath (0-1), C Cleary (0-1), O Kelly (1-1).

Subs: T Geraghty (0-2) for D Egan (33 mins), S Dooley (0-7, seven frees) for Cleary (ht), D Currams for Gath (61), J Gorman for Mahon (61), P Camon for Quinn (68).

Westmeath: S McGovern; S Power, T Doyle, C Shaw; A Craig, P Greville (0-1), D McNicholas; C Boyle, D Egerton; J Gilligan, C Doyle (0-2), N Mitchell (0-1, lineball); K Doyle (0-11, nine frees), S Clavin (0-2), J Galvin (0-1).

Subs: D Clinton for Gilligan (57), A Cox for Boyle (61), P Maxwell for Galvin (61), B Doyle for Power (68), E Quinn for Craig (70+2).

Referee: B Redmond (Wexford).

Wicklow A 1-12 Wexford 6-36