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Holders Begin With A Win

Wednesday 03.01.2018
Team Talk Mag
County


 

Tyrone began the defence of their McKenna Cup title with a comfortable 4-20 to 2-11 success over Antrim at the Athletic Grounds in Armagh on Wednesday night. It was a contest that the Red Hands controlled from start to finish and they were well on their way to victory by the breaking when holding a commanding 1-10 to 0-4 advantage.

CJ McGourty kicked all but one of the Saffrons four points but Tyrone took control after a slow opening quarter of an hour. Mattie Donnelly, Cathal McShane, Lee Brennan, Connor McAliskey and Frank Burns all had first half points, the latter with three superb efforts from distance. Midfielder Padraig McNulty bagged the goal after a flowing move saw him take a pass from Niall Sludden before finishing in style to the back of the net.

It took Antrim sixteen minutes to open their second half account via another McGourty free but by that stage it was damage limitation. McCurry hit two frees as well as one from play with McShane and weighing in with another brace either side of a McAliskey goal. Antrim full forward Callum Duffin palmed in a goal but substitute Ronan McHugh scored from play as well as from a free while a speculative shot from Burns sailed all the way to the Antrim net.

The hard working Sludden then got in on the act with a fourth goal for the holders, a score that meant that all starting six forwards for Tyrone had registered. Corner forward Ryan Murray got four late points for Antrim while Matthew Fitzpatrick got their second goal but it was only academic at that stage.

Tyrone: N Morgan, B Burns, P Hampsey, M McKernan, T McCann, HP McGeary, K McGeary, C McShane (0-4), P McNulty (1-0), M Donnelly (0-2), N Sludden (1-0), F Burns (1-4), D McCurry (0-5, 2f), C McAliskey (1-2, 2f), L Brennan (0-1, 1 “45”). Subs: R McHugh (0-2, 1f) for McAliskey, R McNabb for K McGeary, C McLaughlin for McCann, D McClure for McNulty, B McDonnell for Donnelly, M Cassidy for McKernan

 

Antrim: P Nugent, P Brannigan, P Gallagher, C Lemon, K O’Boyle, J Laverty, P McAleer, M McCarry, N McKeever, S Beatty, M Fitzpatrick (1-0), R McCann, C McGourty (0-4, 3f), C Duffin (1-1), R Murray (0-5, 2f). Subs: P McBride for Laverty, C Murray (0-1) for McCarry, K OhEeili for McCann, N Delargy for Lemon, S McVeigh for McAleer, G Magee for McGourty

 

Referee: E McFeeley, Donegal

 

 

 

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