JUDE’S HIT BACK TO REACH FINAL
DUBLIN SFC SEMI-FINAL
ST JUDE’S produced a stunning performance at Parnell Park yesterday to eliminate St Vincent’s from the Dublin Senior Football Championship.
The Templeogue men (who are still searching for their maiden success at this grade) will now face Kilmacud Crokes in the upcoming decider on October 29.
They recovered from a difficult start to register 1-5 without reply in the second-quarter of the contest and Jude’s manager Padraic Monaghan acknowledged this was a crucial juncture in the contest.
“Not the best start, but they really dug deep. At half-time we were back in the game again through a huge amount of hard work and effort.
“Throughout the second half then they pushed on,” Monaghan remarked afterwards.
“After the start we got it was a fantastic second-quarter for us where we came back into the game. We were so well in it at half-time. Fantastic work-rate out of them.”
While the much-discussed Diarmuid Connolly was once again held in reserve, Vincent’s stormed into a four-point lead courtesy of points from Nathan Mullins, Eamonn Fennell, Gavin Burke and the evergreen Tomas Quinn.
The Jude’s game plan started to take shape as the half progressed, however, and they produced an extraordinary purple patch to leave Vins reeling at the break.
After unanswered scores courtesy of Niall Coakley, Padraic Clarke (two) and Seamus Ryan cancelled out their deficit, the impressive Clarke flicked over the advancing Michael Savage for a 27th-minute goal.
Dublin star Kevin McManamon was becoming more influential and he converted a 50-metre free to give Jude’s a surprise 1-6 to 0-5 interval advantage.
The introduction of Connolly and former Mayo footballer Enda Varley looked set to spark Vins back into life on the resumption, but their expected surge never materialised. A Simon King point extended the Jude’s cushion, before McManamon released the raiding Ryan for a composed finish to the Vincent’s net.
Quinn’s free on the third-quarter mark was a timely boost for the Marino outfit, but Jude’s quickly responded with back-to-back efforts by Tom Devlin and Coakley.
Following Ger Brennan’s agonising miss from close-range, a brace of Varley frees briefly raised the possibility of a late Vincent’s fightback. However, with Connolly struggling to make an impact, late points from Coakley and Chris Guckian sealed a magnificent nine-point triumph for a jubilant St Jude’s.
There will be little time for the Tymon Park side to rest on their laurels as southside rivals Crokes await in a forthcoming showpiece affair.
Monaghan was already beginning to focus on their final date with the Stillorgan men – who defeated Ballyboden St Enda’s 2-9 to 0-9 at the same venue on Saturday.
“They [Kilmacud] are a very, very good bunch of players. They’ve great experience. Good county players. I’m looking forward to the next two weeks and the preparation into the match itself,” Monaghan added.
ST JUDE’S: L Mailey; O Manning, C Fitzpatrick, C O’Reilly; T Lahiff, N O’Shea, C Guckian (0-1); M Sweeney, S Ryan (1-1); R Joyce, S King (0-1), K Doherty; N Coakley (0-3, 1f), K McManamon (0-2, 1f), P Clarke (1-2, 0-1f). Subs: T Devlin (0-1) for Joyce (38), N Mangan for King (52), A Sweeney for M Sweeney, B Sheehan for O’Shea (both 60), D Donnelly for Clarke (61).
ST VINCENT’S: M Savage; M Concarr, F Breathnach, J McCusker; B Egan, G Brennan, G Burke (0-1); E Fennell (0-1), N Mullins (0-1); L Galvin, L Smyth (0-1), C Diamond; A Baxter, S Carthy, T Quinn (0-2, 2f). Subs: D Connolly for Diamond, E Varley (0-2, 2f) for Baxter (both h-t), J Feeney for Smyth (48 mins), R McBride for Mullins (56 mins), S Lambe for Burke (59 mins).
Referee: D O’Connor (Naomh Mearnog).