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Thursday 15 November 2018

Ballinteer do just enough

Ballinteer SJ 1-18 Crumlin 3-12

FREE ROLE: Ballinteer St John’s Danny McCarthy fires over a free during Saturday’s Dublin SHC ‘A’ Group 4 draw with Crumlin at Parnell Park. Photo: Justin Farrelly
FREE ROLE: Ballinteer St John’s Danny McCarthy fires over a free during Saturday’s Dublin SHC ‘A’ Group 4 draw with Crumlin at Parnell Park. Photo: Justin Farrelly

Ballinteer St John's did just enough to claim the point needed to qualify in second place as they drew with Crumlin in Parnell Park last Saturday afternoon.

The Marley park outfit appeared to be cruising into the last eight as they enjoyed a six-point lead with just three minutes of normal time remaining but they were rocked by the concession of two late goals as their opponents launched a stirring late comeback.

However, the ten points scored by Danny McCarthy across the hour proved enough for St John's as they now meet local rivals Ballyboden St Enda's for a place in the semi-final.

A brace of Danny McCarthy frees and an excellent score by Glenn Whelan handed St John's the early initiative against a Crumlin that started on the back foot despite an excellent solo score by midfielder Lee Coleman.

However, the momentum changed briefly in the fifth minute as Alex Quinn left both Jack Gilligan and Brian Smith for dead with a thrilling run that culminated in a low shot beyond Seánie Lane from 12 yards.

An Adam McGreal free two minutes later pushed Crumlin two points clear but their struggles in gaining possession around the middle third began to undermine their chances as the contest evolved.

Smith and Aodhán Clabby tagged on unanswered points to bring St John's level by the 10th minute and a poor clearance a minute later allowed Joe Maher sufficient time and space to shoot home past Colm Hennebry.

Ballinteer were totally dominant at this stage and should really have built up a greater buffer than the points that followed through Clabby, McCarthy and James Gilligan.

Stylish

The talented Quinn was starved of possession for the large part but ended a barren period of 16 minutes for Crumlin when adding a typically stylish point in the 23rd minute.

However, St John's replied through another McCarthy free and Gilligan's second score of the game to push seven points (1-11 to 1-4) clear at the interval.

Crumlin’s Shane Ryan flicks the sliotar to Lee Coleman. Photo: Justin Farrelly
Crumlin’s Shane Ryan flicks the sliotar to Lee Coleman. Photo: Justin Farrelly

Crumlin were a far more impressive side upon the restart with Ben Quinn's move from wing-back strengthening their hand in attack with his three points from play reflecting his influence as the St John's defence came under increasing spells of pressure.

Crumlin struck the first four points of the half with McCarthy, Gilligan and Clabby responding and when McCarthy landed three frees on the spin, it appeared that St John's would cruise to victory.

However, a smart finish from a rebound by substitute Daniel Hanks offered Crumlin a lifeline and they seized the chance afforded to them as Alex Quinn made light of a tight angle to fire home another sublime finish to level matters at the finish.

Scorers - Ballinteer St John's: D McCarthy 0-10 (0-7f), James Gilligan, A Clabby 0-3 each, J Maher 1-0, B Smith, G Whelan 0-1 each. Crumlin: A Quinn 2-2, A McGreal 0-5 (0-3f, 0-1 '65'), B Quinn 0-3, D Hanks 1-0, L Coleman 0-2.

Ballinteer St John's: S Lane; R Collins, C O'Brien, Jack Gilligan; B Smith, D Gormley, F Clabby; D McCarthy, S Smith; R Aherne, James Gilligan, G Whelan; J Maher, A Clabby, T Aherne. Subs: D Harney for R Aherne (44), P Watchorn for Jack Gilligan (45), G Byrne for T Aherne (47), B Mannion for S Smith (59).

Crumlin: C Hennebry; D Kellett, A Byrne, P Devlin; B Quinn, C Foley, J Cullen; L Coleman, C Gough; K Elliott, S Ryan, A Doyle; A Quinn, D Whelan, A McGreal. Subs: J Enright for Doyle (half-time), C Murphy for Gough (44), D Hanks for Whelan (54).

Referee: Peter Smyth (O'Toole's).

2018 DUBLIN SHC 'A' QUARTER-FINALS

St Vincent's v Na Fianna; Kilmacud Crokes v St Jude's; Ballyboden St Enda's v Ballinteer St John's; Lucan Sarsfields v Cuala.

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