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Dublin

Dublin are Leinster Minor Hurling Champions


Electric Ireland Leinster Minor Hurling Final

Dublin 2-12 Wexford 0-12

By Paul Keane

Late goals from Johnny McGuirk and Donal Burke broke Wexford's resolve at Croke Park as Dublin secured a first Electric Ireland Leinster minor hurling title in four years.

The Dubs conceded four points in a row to trail by one with 55 minutes on the clock.

But a strong finish saw them outscore Wexford by 2-2 to 0-1 to win by a slightly flattering six-point margin, allowing captain and Man of the Match Paddy Smyth to lift the trophy.

McGuirk hit the first goal in the 55th minute while Burke followed his lead four minutes later to effectively end Wexford's brave bid for a first title since 1985.

Burke finished with 1-3, all from play, while free-taker Colin Currie weighed in with five points.

Dublin's reward is an All-Ireland semi-final date in mid-August while losers Wexford are still alive with a quarter-final place to look forward to.

The day ended in difficulty for Wexford who lost Rory O'Connor to a straight red card four minutes into injury-time.

Dublin were seeking to make it third time lucky following final defeats to Kilkenny in each of the last two seasons. They fell two points down following early Wexford scores from Jack Cullen and O'Connor.

But they were back on level terms by the 10th minute at 0-2 to 0-2, setting in train an enjoyable tit-for-tat scoring encounter. The sides remained deadlocked after 20 minutes at 0-4 apiece but three excellent Burke points in a row for Dublin, all from distance, finally put some daylight between the teams.

McGuirk also nailed a beauty from distance for Dublin though two more O'Connor points from Wexford left just two points in it at half-time as Dublin led 0-8 to 0-6. Wexford dominated the first 25 minutes of the second-half and hit four points in a row between the 48th and 53rd minutes from Damien Reck, Conal Flood and free-taker O'Connor to take a 0-11 to 0-10 lead.

It stayed that way until five minutes from time but Dublin had clearly saved their best for the finish and conjured that strong finale to win comfortably.

*Scorers for Dublin: *D Burke 1-3, C Currie 0-5 (0-4f), J McGuirk 1-1, C Burke 0-1, J Walsh 0-1, C Dowling 0-1

Scorers for Wexford: R O'Connor 0-5 (0-2f), D Reck 0-3 (0-2f), C Flood 0-2, J Cullen 0-1, G Molloy 0-1.

Dublin: *D de Poire; D Ryan, P Smyth, J O'Neill; J McVeigh, C O'Sullivan, E Foley; C Ryan, D Burke; C Burke, J McGuirk, D Gray; C Dowling, M O'Keeffe, C Currie. *Subs: R Hayes for O'Keeffe (35), D Hawkshaw for McVeigh (40), J Walsh for Gray (41), D Keogh for Ryan (50), P Feeney for Currie (56).

Wexford:

J Henebry; C Murphy, D Byrne, E Molloy; G Molloy, C Firman, J Cullen; D Reck, B O'Connor; L Stafford, C Flood, A Walsh; Q Saunders, C Hearne, R O'Connor. Subs: E Kelly for B O'Connor (44), M Codd for Walsh (50), L Pender for Saunders (59).

*Referee: *P Burke (Kilkenny).

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