A brilliant second half display of free taking by midfielder, Conor Kelly, was decisive when Kilkenny scored a fine win over a physically bigger and stronger Dublin team in the Electric Ireland Leinster minor hurling championship at Parnell Park today.
The O'Loughlin Gaels clubman shot 12 points during the closing half as the Cats raced in some style into the new season.
The winners led by 2-10 to 2-7 at half time after playing against the fresh breeze. They opened the new half with three scores from Kelly to take a firm grip on the game (2-13 to 2-7).
The Dubs kept chasing and with the help of goals from Liam Dunne and Luke Swan the scores were level with six minutes remaining (2-18 to 4-12).
Kilkenny regained the lead when Ciaran Brennan took a ball from Cathal O'Leary before lashing the sliotar into the net within seconds. A quick hat trick of points from Kelly put the match beyond the home side.
Dublin enjoyed a dream start when tall and physicall strong full-forward, Luke Swan hammered home a goal in the third minute. They held the lead until a 15th minute goal from Cathal O'Leary pushed Kilkenny in front for the firrt time, 1-4 to 1-3.
When Swan nabbed a second goal the Dubs regained the advantage, but a rush of Kilkenny scores from Jack Morrissey, George Murphy (goal and point), Conor Kelly (two frees), Ciaran Brennan and O'Leary left Kilkenny with a 2-10 to 2-7 advantage at the break after what was a high class, open contest.
Kilkenny play Wexford in Nowlan Park on Saturday (2pm).
SCORERS: Kilkenny - C. Kelly (0-14); C. Brennan (1-4); G. Murphy (1-2); C. O'Leary (1-1); C. Kenny, J. Morrisseey (0-1 each). Dublin - L. Swan (3-1); L. Dunne (1-7); D. Purcell (0-2); A. O'Neill, P. Christie (0-1 each).
Kilkenny - J. Brennan; P. Dempsey, J. Young, J. Harkin; S. Staunton, P. Moylan, H. Walsh; C. Kenny, C. Kelly; D. Maher, C. Brennan, K. Hogan; C. O'Leary, J. Morrissey, G. Murphy. Sub - E. Guilfoyle for K. Hogan.
Dublin - J. Lambert; K. Byrne, C. Hogan, T. Cullen; E. Carney, A. O'Neill, I. Ó hEither; D. Leavy, D. Power; Dp. McLoughney, P. Christie, C. Foley; L. Dunne, L. Swan, D. Purcell. Subs - F. Murphy for T. Cullen; C. Murray for D. McLoughlin.
Referee - B. Redmond (Wexford).
Subscribe or register today to discover more from DonegalLive.ie
Buy the e-paper of the Donegal Democrat, Donegal People's Press, Donegal Post and Inish Times here for instant access to Donegal's premier news titles.
Keep up with the latest news from Donegal with our daily newsletter featuring the most important stories of the day delivered to your inbox every evening at 5pm.