By Patrick Keane.
Second half super sub, Joseph Dowling, was the difference between Warwickshire and Gloucestershire at the Parc Na Eirhann on Sunday, as both sides served up a fast and furious Round 1 game.
Dowling’s second half entrance turned out to be an inspired substitution, with the experienced midfielder bagging 1-2 to swing the result the way of the home side. But although running out eventual winners, Warwickshire didn’t have everything their own way, with Gloucestershire showing true heart and grit in a tight and competitive affair.
From the opening whistle, the travelling team showed their intensions by claiming the game’s opening goal, within the first minutes. Executed by Aaron McLoughlin, the attacking midfielder showed a frightening turn of pace before blasting into the top corner of the net.
Seemingly still in shock from the early bombardment Warwickshire conceded another point, courtesy of precise accuracy from Caolan Thomas, as early signs of frustration began to show among the home sides’ players.
Warwickshire were soon back into the game, however, with Sean McDermott’s Eamon Hanlon notching a finely taken point to put his team onto the scoreboard. With 15 minutes of the first half still to play, Warwickshire slowly but surely began to take control of the tempo in the middle of the park.
For more see this week’s edition of the Irish World