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Promising Dublin forward Ross McGarry.
Promising Dublin forward Ross McGarry.

EirGrid Leinster U20: Impressive Dublin advance

EirGrid Leinster Under 20 Football Championship Semi-Final

DUBLIN 4-16 MEATH 2-10

By Dan Bannon at Pairc Tailteann

Dublin will face Kildare in the inaugural Leinster U20 Championship decider following an emphatic win over Meath.

Two James Doran goals at the start of each half sent Dublin on their way. The restarts shellshocked the hosts, and they failed to get into the game as a result.

Along with Doran, Dublin’s two inside forwards of Ross McGarry and Tom Keane top scored for Tom Grey’s side. Both were hugely impressive all evening and their elusive running style was too hot for Meath to handle.

Ethan Devine did respond for the Royals, but David O’Hanlon’s kick outs were key to Dublin victory providing a steady supply of possession to his dominant forwards. Naomh Olafs Keane particularly rampant during this period.

Nobber’s Jordan Morris struck two first half free’s to keep the hosts in touch and a Kieran Kennedy black card sparked Meath to finish the half strongly.

Frank O’Reilly (free), James Conlon and another Morris free and O’Hanlon was forced into a good save under the unrelenting Meath pressure. O’Reilly finally did find the net scoring a penalty to make the half time score 1-8 to 1-5.

That was Meath’s strongest period and upon the resumption another early Doran major ended the game as a contest.

Dublin took over with a full press in the second half from the formidable midfield pairing of Donal Ryan and Sean Bugler pinning Meath back and gave the Dublin platform for their forwards to thrive. McGarry and Karl Lynch Bissett added a brace of goals after Meath’s Ethan Devine had a goal cancelled out for a square ball.

Substitutes Shane Walsh and Adam Kealy tried in vain to gain some traction for Brian Farrell’s charges however, Dan O’Brien and Sean Bugler (brace) saw Dublin ease into the final.

Scorers for Dublin: James Doran 2-1, Tom Keane 0-7 (2fs), Ross McGarry 1-4 (1f) , Karl Lynch Bissett 1-0, Sean Bugler 0-2, Dan O’Brien 0-1 and Cormac Howley 0-1.

Scorers for Meath: Jordan Morris 1-4 (3fs), Frank O’Reilly 1-2 (1-0 pen, 1f), Adam Kealy 0-1, Ethan Devine 0-1 James Conlon 0-1 and Shane Walsh 0-1

DUBLIN: David O’Hanlon; Nathan Nolan, Nathan Doran, Ciaran Smith; Kieran Kennedy, Neil Matthews, Eoin O’Dea; Donal Ryan, Sean Bugler;James Madden,James Doran, Cormac Howley; Ross McGarry, Dan O’Brien, Tom Keane.

Subs: Simon King for K Kennedy BC (21 mins), Glenn McNamara for N Nolan (44 mins) Karl Lynch Bissett for C Howley (48 mins) James Holland for J Doran (52 mins), Conor Hynes for D Ryan (57 mins), Eoghan Fitzpatrick for T Keane (57 mins).

MEATH: Andrew Beakey; Robbie Clarke, Conor Harnan, Kieran Slavin; Eoin Smyth, Eanna O'Kelly Lynch, James Cassidy; Ethan Devine, Adam Murphy; Sean Reilly,Darragh Campion, Jason Scully;Frank O’Reilly, James Conlon,Jordan Morris.

Subs: Shane Walsh for S Reilly (HT), Sean Ryan for J Cassidy (38 mins), Adam Kealy for F O’Reilly (54 mins ),Shane McDonnell for E Devine (57 mins) Ben McGowan for K Slavin (57 mins),Brian O’Reilly for E Smith (60 mins).

REFEREE: Brendan Cawley (Kildare).