Kildare and Meath both won their Leinster SFC quarter-finals on Sunday, 4th June and will contest their semi-final on Saturday evening, 17th June. The other semi-final will be between Dublin and the winners of Offaly v Westmeath.
Leinster SFC Quarter-Final: Meath 0-27, Louth 3-9
Meath gained the upper-hand on Louth once again in the Leinster Senior Football Championship, with 27 points compensating for the concession of three goals.
The Royal County took control in the closing 20 minutes, turning a two point deficit into a nine point winning margin.
Inspired by team captain Graham Reilly, Meath outscored Louth by 0-14 to 1-0 during this purple patch at Parnell Park.
Meath also enjoyed the better of the opening exchanges, and led by 0-8 to 0-4 before Jim McEneaney brought the sides level with a quick-fire 1-1, the goal coming from a 29th minute penalty.
A couple of Donal Lenihan points put Meath ahead by 0-10 to 1-6 at the interval. But Louth hit the lead again with a soft Ronan Holcroft goal, only for Meath to step it up a gear again.
A succession of well-taken points put them in the driving seat and even a third Louth goal from Conal McKeever couldn’t prevent Meath from advancing.
Meath Scorers: Graham Reilly 0-7, Donal Lenihan 0-6 (3f, 1 ‘45’), James Toher 0-5 (3f), Thomas Reilly 0-2, Bryan McMahon 0-2, Ruairi O Coileain 0-2, Cillian O’Sullivan 0-1, Ronan Jones 0-1, Sean Tobin 0-1.
Louth Scorers: Jim McEneaney 1-2 (1-0 pen), Conal McKeever 1-0, Ronan Holcroft 1-0, James Califf 0-3 (1f), Ryan Burns 0-2 (2f), Anthony Williams 0-1, Bevan Duffy 0-1.
MEATH: Paddy O’Rourke; Donnacha Tobin, Conor McGill, Mickey Burke; Pauric Harnan, Donal Keogan, Shane McEntee; Bryan Menton, Ronan Jones; James Toher, Cillian O’Sullivan, Eamon Wallace; Graham Reilly, Bryan McMahon, Donal Lenihan. Subs: David McQuillan for McGill (30, black card), Ruairi O Coileain for S McEntee (52), Cian O’Brien for Menton (55), Thomas Reilly for McMahon (59), Sean Tobin for O’Sullivan (69).
LOUTH: Craig Lynch; Patrick Reilly, Kevin Carr, Padraig Rath; John Bingham, Liam Dullaghan, Anthony Williams; Tommy Durnin, James Stewart; Declan Byrne, Jim McEneaney, Bevan Duffy; Paraic Smith, Eoin O’Connor, Ryan Burns. Subs: Kurt Murphy for Rath (20), Andy McDonnell for Byrne (26), Ronan Holcroft for Carr (29, black card), Conal McKeever for Dullaghan (h/t), James Califf for Durnin (41), Ruairi Moore for Smith (70).
Referee: B. Cassidy (Derry)
Leinster SFC Quarter-Final: Kildare 1-21, Laois 1-7
Eleven of Kildare’s starting 15 and two substitutes contributed to their 1-21 total as they cruised past Laois at O’Connor Park.
Even an early goal from Donie Kingston couldn’t inspired a Laois side who were relegated to Division 4 at this venue in April, when losing by a point to Offaly.
Laois didn’t register another score from play until Alan Farrell popped over a point in the 29th minute.
Even allowing for the fact they had the advantage of the wind in the first half, Kildare looked by far the better team and built up a 0-12 to 1-2 interval lead.
With Daniel Flynn and Cathal McNally chipping with scores from the full forward line, they attacked Laois from all angles and defenders Keith Cribbin and Ollie Lyons contributed to their tally.
Kildare scored their goal through Daniel Flynn in the 48th minute and with Kevin Feely dominant at midfield, they confidently marched on to the semi-finals.
Kildare Scorers: D Flynn 1-3, C McNally, N Kelly 0-3 each, K Feely (2f), P Cribbin 0-2 each, K Cribbin, M Donnellan (’45’), O Lyons, T Moolick, D Slattery, J Byrne, F Dowling, E Callaghan 0-1 each.
Laois Scorers: D Kingston 1-2 (0-2f), G Walsh 0-3 (1 ’45’), E O’Carroll (f), A Farrell 0-1 each.
KILDARE: M Donnellan; O Lyons, M O’Grady, D Hyland; J Byrne, E Doyle, K Cribbin; K Feely, T Moolick; F Conway, N Kelly, P Cribbin; D Slattery, D Flynn, C McNally. Subs: E Callaghan for Conway (53), F Dowling for Moolick (57), C Healy for McNally (57), P Kelly for O’Grady (64), E Bolton for D Flynn (64).
LAOIS: G Brody; D Strong, D Booth, J Kelly; E Buggie, P McMahon, D O’Connor; C Begley, B Quigley; N Donoher, J O’Loughlin, E O’Carroll; P Kingston, D Kingston, A Farrell. Subs: A Doran for Donoher (19), G Walsh for O’Carroll (41), R Munnelly for P Kingston (52), K Meaney for Quigley (64), D Conway for Doran (64), J Finn for Kelly (66)
Referee: David Coldrick (Meath)