VGC IFC Group A
Tara: 2-16 St
By Damian Dolan
Hard to judge Tara’s Intermediate Championship credentials on this evidence, as they cruised to a comfortable opening round win over St Anthonys. But last year’ junior champions did all that was required of them at McGovern Park as they produced a dominant second half display, inspired by centre forward Paul McArdle, who finished with 1-9 to his name.
Anthonys made Tara work for it in the first half, though.
Compact and hardworking they frustrated Tara, and it wasn’t until injury-time that Tara were able to open up a three-point lead (0-7 to 0-4).
Anthonys kept the ball well, but too often lacked an end product, with the pick of their scores being a lovely curling effort off the outside of his right boot from Liam McGovern.
Tara started to string together some nice passages of play as the half wore on, the best of which saw Kieran McStay put Aidan Ward in on goal, only for the half forward to blaze very high over the bar, when on another day he might have tested Emmett Garvey.
Alan Nagle’s injury-time score saw Tara take a three-point lead into the break, and it might have been four following another slick move, only for Dean McDermott’s shot to come back off the post.
It was the last act of a rather subdued first half, one of the highlights of which was the lightening which lit up the Ruislip skyline and the torrential downpour which had all and sundry diving for the covered section of the Mc-Goven Stand.
Tara set about increasing their lead in the opening 11 minutes of the second half, chalking up four scores with Anthonys subjected to wave after wave of attack.
Tara had upped it, with Colm Kenny, Ambrose Stafford and McArdle (2) all on target.
Read the full match report in this week’s The Irish World Newspaper
Tara: Liam Gill; Seamus Bolton, Gearoid Lynch, James Carry; Liam Fennessy, Mark Beirne, Brendan Lyons; Anthony Held (0-1), Dean McDermott; Aidan Ward (0-1), Paul McArdle (1-9, 3f, 2×45, 1xPen), Aidan Harte; Colm Kenny (0-2, 1f), Ambrose Stafford (0-2), Kieran McStay (1-0). Subs: Alan Nagle (0-1) for Bolton, Michael Cunliffe for Harte, Steven Griffin for Carry, Gerard McCabe for Ward, Paddy McLaughlin for Kenny.
St Anthonys: Emmett Garvey; Michael Laffey, Brendan Troy, David Casey; Andy McDonagh; Conal McKillop, Chris McGillen (0-2, 1f); Phil McCabe, Hugh Towey; Ryan O’Hehir, Liam McGovern (0-2), Eoghan Collins; Niall Steward, Maurice O’Connell, Cathal Flynn. Subs: Eoin O’Connell for Troy.