Cara Stationery Sheils Cup Semi-Final
Harlesden Harps 1-16
St Anthonys 3-07
By Damian Dolan
Apt that this semi-final was played out in the shadow of Wormwood Scrubs, as Harlesden Harps got out of jail to reach the Sheils Cup final.
Having dominated the first half only to trail by a point, Harps surged into a five-point lead after the break and seemed on course to cruise into a final meeting with St Brendans.
But a spirited late St Anthonys fightback turned the game on its head and Harlesden were indebted to an injury-time Darren Lynch penalty to get them out of jail.
Harps will wonder just how they trailed by 1-4 to 0-6 at the break having dominated the first half. A brace of Thomas Britton frees saw the Reading side strike first blood, but the action was becoming increasingly concentrated at Eoghan Collins’ end of the field.
Ryan Moran opened Harlesden’s account and they were soon ahead with Padraig McGoldrick and Sean Murphy pointing.
Mc-Goldrick and Murphy were linking well, with Anthony Donelan and Andrew McWeeney never missing a chance to get forward. Tadgh Downey was showing well in midfield, while Sean O’Halloran was tidying up everything.
Harlesden’s problem wasn’t creating scoring opportunities, it was taking them, and despite their dominance they only led 0-6 to 0- 3 by the 24th minute.
HARLESDEN HARPS: James Mannion; Kevin Hynes, Robert Reid, Michael Keane; Anthony Donelan (0-2), Sean O’Halloran, Andrew McWeeney; Peter Rafferty, Tadgh Downey; James Minihan, Sean Murphy (0-1), Ryan Moran (0-1); Ashley O’Halloran, Padraig McGoldrick (0-7, 2f), Clive Mills. SUBS: Darren Lynch (1-2, 1xPen) for Mills, Neil Horan (0-3) for Moran, Rory Corrigan for Hynes, David O’Sullivan for Murphy, Declan McCarthy for Keane.
ST ANTHONYS: Eoghan Collins; Michael Laffey, Liam Brennan, Shane Dowling; Andrew McDonagh, Stephen Tierney (1-4, 1f), Conor McTeague; Philip McCabe (1-0), Hugh Towey; Chris Gillen, Colm Faherty, Ryan O’Hehir; Thomas Britton (1-3, 2f), Ted O’Brien, Cathal Flynn. SUBS: Dave Casey for O’Hehir, Brendan Troy for Casey.