Kilburn Gaels 1-16
Robert Emmetts 0-14
By Fiona O’Brien
Kilburn Gaels outclassed reigning champions Robert Emmetts in this year’s county final, as they stopped their rivals claiming their third title in a row.
Kilburn were so dominant on the day they could have won by more than five points, before the Emmetts came back into the game with a flurry of pointed frees in the second half.
The Emmetts forwards were disappointing, as only one of their scores from play came from one of their six starting forwards. In contrast, every single one of Kilburn’s six forwards got their name on the scoreboard, with Stephen Lambert’s six frees and Sean Conlon’s first-half goal particularly important.
Kilburn raced off to a twopoint lead early on after scores from Donie Reale and Seamus Carey, before Lambert added two more pointed frees to give his side a four-to-nil lead ten minutes into the game.
The Emmetts responded immediately from Sean Ryan’s puck-out as Daryl Roberts received it well and put it straight over for their opening score. Lambert would point another free immediately from the half-way line, before Conor Hickey did well to deal with a dangerous ball put into Joe Roberts from Conor Walsh. Gary Hill, playing well in midfield, struck a short free in to Michael O’Laodha next but the full-forward’s strike went across the face of goal and wide.
Paddy McNaughton did well to bat the ball down to Alan O’Leary in the Emmett’s next attack, and it was played back to Cian Lordan but pressure from Brian Campion saw the shot go wide. Kilburn were closing the Emmetts down with speed to prevent them any time on the ball, and Hill’s next effort went wide under pressure.
He would get the next score however, as the Emmetts played an extra pass in the middle of the park which paid off to give themselves a bit of breathing space as Eoin Kiely and Alan O’Leary set up the Wexford man for a nice point, cutting the deficit to three.
Richard Murphy’s next free went into the square but was batted out for a 65, which the Douglas man took well, but just as they were looking to challenge Kilburn’s lead, Lambert got his own chance to point from the set-play, just inside the Emmetts’ half.
Pick up this week’s copy of The Irish World for the full match report!
KILBURN GAELS: Jack Barron, Kevin Campion, Niall Coen, Conor Hickey; Willie Campion, Brian Regan, Keith Kennedy (0-1), Aidan O’Leary, Chris McAlinden (0-1), Fergal Collins (0-3), Seamus Carey (0- 1), Sean Conlon (1-0), Stephen Lambert (0-6, 6f), Jody Troy (0- 1), Donie Reale (0-2, 1f) SUBS: Adam Murphy (0-1) for Lambert (45), C Reid for Conlon (60),
ROBERT EMMETTS: Sean Ryan, Mark Conroy, Stephen Griffey, Conor Walsh, Paddy McNaughton, Paul Horkan, Eoin Kiely, Daryl Roberts (0-1), Gary Hill (0-2), Alan O’Leary, Richard Murphy (0-3, 2f 1 ‘65’), Rory Costello, Joe Roberts, Michael O’Laodha, Cian Lordan (0-1) SUBS: Eoin Chawke (0-6, 5f) for Roberts (h/t), Denis O’Regan for O’Laodha (h/t), Fergus McMahon (0-1) for Horkan (36), Mick Dwyer for Costello (41), Conor O’Brien for Kiely (53).
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