Thursday 23 November 2017

Determined Dubs can claim Leinster title

DUBLIN followers will be hoping for better tidings from Newbridge this time. The young Dubs haven't been sparing the petrol all season for their management crew.

They beat Kildare by a point after extra-time in their opening round clash but the Lilies have prospered through the back door, and they are now a much more formidable outfit.

Kildare ousted Meath in the semi-final at Newbridge. The Royals were seeking their sixth successive Leinster title. Home advantage will again be worth a point, or three.

Dublin are well prepared for the challenge. Following the Kildare victory, they also had to display grit to overcome Wicklow and Offaly.

There was only two points in it against the Garden County and then things were looking especially bleak against Offaly as Dublin trailed by five points early in the second half.

They possess a class full-back in Graham Hannigan. Tom Quinn is a terrific centre half-back, while Tom Lahiff and Dean Brennan shovel plenty of coal in the engine room.

Full-forward, Shane Hickey, was the goal-scoring hero against Offaly. Adam Rodgers can also make an impact. Kildare's 'keeper, David Byrne, earned his chips against Meath. Gary Savage and Aaron Bannon-Whelan gel well at midfield, and Wayne Fitzpatrick and Cathal Jennings are slick finishers.

The Lilywhites like to move the ball at pace. They don't lack skill and strength. But they'll be meeting a determined Dublin, who have a few tricks of their own. The hour promises much. In the home of the Curragh, this well-trodden turf will welcome two classy college colts.

DUBLIN: Darren Brennan; A Lenihan, G Hannigan, D Allen; E McLoughlin, T Quinn, C Neville; T Lahiff, Dean Brennan; C Flynn, T Devlin, B Mallon; A Rodgers, S Hickey, C McLoughlin.


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