Westmeath 2-12, London 1-12
By Larry Cooney.
London will be playing Christy Ring Cup hurling next year after just two years among hurling’s elite.
On a miserable day in Mullingar two late goals from Alan Devine maintained Westmeath’s tenuous interest in the Leinster championship until 14 June at least when they face this year’s Christy Ring Cup winners – probably Kerry.
But from a London point of view the result means that they are relegated after a match best remembered for all the wrong statistics – four dismissals and eleven yellow cards and not the gallant efforts of both teams who at times were left completely frustrated by the some of the baffling decisions by the Derry referee. But for the small attendance who braved the damp and cold conditions the match itself was an entertaining encounter almost devoid of any serious nastiness.
Quite why there were so many yellow cards is something only the referee can explain but two of these cautions eventually led to very unfair dismissals including that of London midfielder Darren Moore on the stroke of half-time. The Tipperary man had been having a fine game when he was fouled just in front of the tunnel.
For more see this week’s edition of the Irish World