Thursday 22 March 2018

Minors show Wicklow the way forward

DUBLIN got their Leinster Minor Football League campaign off to a winning start with a comprehensive 3-19 to 1-9 victory over Wicklow in Roundwood last Friday evening.

The 2011 Leinster League and Championship winners put in an impressive first-half showing with the template set by an eighth-minute goal from Na Fianna's dual player Conor McHugh.

McHugh, who played an integral role in his club's U21 success last month, finished with 1-4 in total, and his good work in attack was replicated by David Sexton from St Sylvester's, with the wing-forward accounting for 0-4 of his side's tally.

The one-sided nature of the opening period was confirmed on the scoreboard when Sexton's fellow wing-forward Niall Walsh plundered Dublin's second goal 10 minutes before the interval with St Oliver Plunkett's/Eoghan Ruadh accumulating 1-3 over the hour.


Leading 2-11 to 0-3 at the break, Dublin took their foot off the gas somewhat upon the turnaround with a youthful Wicklow team -- only four of their starting 15 were second year minors -- beginning to show glimpses of their capabilities in the second half.

Corner-forward Michael O'Connor, for one, gave a very lively showing, kicking 1-5 in total, 1-2 from play, but their chances of staging an unlikely comeback were hindered when Dublin substitute Cormac Costello added a third goal in the 37th minute.

Wicklow's hopes were further undermined when they were reduced to 14 players with a quarter of an hour to go with Dublin comfortably seeing out the remainder to prevail by 16 points.

Offaly are next on the agenda for Dessie Farrell's side next weekend, with the Dubs weakened by the absence of their dual players and Coláiste Eoin contingent, who will contest the Leinster Colleges SF 'A' final.

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