Rovers win in the worst of style
A stunning winning goal from midfielder Marc Kenny merely papered over the cracks of a dreadful Shamrock Rovers display at Buckley Park on Saturday night.
Kilkenny, with Martin Reid running the midfield, dominated the first-half but were left cursing the excellent goalkeeping of Robbie Forde who made a superb stop with his feet to deprive Richie Hale a certain goal on 23 minutes.
Rovers might have sneaked the lead jus before half-time when Kenny scraped the outside of a post with a 20-yard drive.
The interval talking to seemed to work for Rovers who clinically punished a mistake by Robbie Walsh to take the lead within two minutes of the resumption. Kenny played Tony Cousins in behind Brendan Rea, and though Ashley Stephenson did well to one-handedly push away Cousins' shot, Derek Tracey followed up to score. More bad defending, though this time at the other end, brought an equaliser within a minute. Rea's header from a Reid free-kick was parried, Hale's attempt from the rebound was then blocked away, but Rea followed up to blast the loose ball into the roof of the net from ten yards.
But Kilkenny's naivety was again exposed on the hour. They lost possession, Kenny wasn't closed down and had the time to pick his spot and plant a tremendous 25-yard curling, shot beyond Stephenson.