Mullinalaghta make history, Munster dominate Castres in grim affair

Morning Sports Briefing: Keep ahead of the game with ‘The Irish Times’ sports team

Mullinalaghta’s Shane Mulligan lifts the trophy after his side’s Leinster club SFC final victory over Kilmacud Crokes. Photograph: Oisin Keniry/Inpho

Mullinalaghta’s Shane Mulligan lifts the trophy after his side’s Leinster club SFC final victory over Kilmacud Crokes. Photograph: Oisin Keniry/Inpho

Mullinalaghta landed one of the biggest upsets in GAA club history yesterday, as they beat Kilmacud Crokes 1-8 to 1-6 in Tullamore to lift the Leinster SFC title - a first ever crown for Longford. Gary Rogers’ penalty won the day for the underdogs, on the 50th anniversary of the county’s sole provincial senior title. Seán Moran was in O’Connor Park to see a small slice of history being made, he writes: “The statistics of the coup are already well aired. The half-parish on the border of Cavan with its population of 447 was facing up to the might of twice All-Ireland champions Kilmacud Crokes and their membership, conservatively pitched at 10 times their opponents’ population. For further context, when the counties met in the summer’s Leinster championship, Dublin had 19 points to spare. The Spartans were better odds at Thermopylae.”

Elsewhere Munster took control of their Champions Cup Pool Two with a resounding - if ugly - 30-5 win over Castres at Thomond Park yesterday. Johann van Graan’s side were dominant against the defending Top14 champions but unable to force the bonus point - however the South African was pleased with his side’s efforts, especially after seeing both Joey Carbery and Chris Farrell ruled out in the lead up to kick-off. He said: “I think it was a good performance . . .If you said at the start of the competition we would be leading at the halfway stage of course we would have taken it. A massive test awaits us in these doubleheader returns and you don’t just go to the champions of France in their back yard and get anything for free.”

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