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Fri, 19th July 2019


By Daire Walsh

The race for top spot in Division Two of the Adult Football League intensified last night, following the respective victories for Castleknock, St Sylvester’s and Clontarf in their latest competitive outings.

Arguably the biggest result of the evening was ‘Tarf’s 0-16 to 0-15 success over Naomh Mearnog, who have also been pushing strongly for promotion in recent months. This was a ninth win in succession for the northsiders and they are now just one adrift of Castleknock and Sylvester’s in the second-tier.

‘Tarf are set to face the latter on the final weekend of the season (August 31) and this could have major implications for both clubs in their quest for promotion to Division One. Since losing out to Syls at Broomfield on May 8, there hasn’t been a false step from Castleknock.

A surprise reversal away to Round Tower Lusk in mid-June saw Sylvester’s conceding ground to their main rivals and Castleknock have continued to prosper as the campaign moves towards its final stretch. They had reason to be wary of the challenge posed by Naomh Olaf at Somerton Park, especially after the Sandyford outfit’s recent triumph at the expense of Scoil Ui Chonaill.

The Castleknock attack has been amassing impressive tallies through the season, however, and they were in no mood to let-up on this occasion. With just four minutes gone on the clock, John Kindlon released Tommy McDaniel for an expertly-taken goal.

Kindlon was a star performer for ‘Knock during the opening period, contributing three points for the hosts. There was also scoring contributions from Gerard McDermottroe (two), Shane Boland and Sean Gibbons as Lar Norton’s side created a 1-8 to 0-3 buffer at the break.

They received a minor set-back when Olaf’s found the net immediately after the resumption, but Castleknock responded in consummate fashion. Whilst midfielder Gibbons claimed another major for the rampant home team, the scoring was not just confined to their starting 15.

Supplementing Darragh Warnock’s 1-1 salvo, Seamus O’Carroll (who has featured prominently at inter-county level for his native Limerick) bagged 1-3 in an eye-catching cameo appearance. McDaniel added a brace of points to match O’Carroll’s haul, while McDermottroe also found the range again for the in-control Castleknock.

Graham Hannigan and James Sherry (operating in a sweeper role) were also dominant and after claiming a 4-15 to 1-8 triumph, they can now move forward to Saturday week’s encounter with St Mary’s, Saggart in the perfect frame of mind.

It was a much-closer affair at Broomfield, but Sylvester’s nevertheless emerged with four points to spare (1-12 to 0-11) over Na Fianna ‘B’. Despite their agonising loss to Clontarf, Naomh Mearnog remain in the hunt - just four points adrift of Castleknock and Sylvester’s at the summit.

Although they had the measure of Kilmacud Crokes ‘B’ at Silver Park, Ballyboughal remain in sixth place. However, should they win their game in hand, they could leap-frog the Stillorgan men in the table.

At Clontarf Road, Scoil Ui Chonaill made it four wins out of five courtesy of a 2-12 to 0-15 victory against St Mary’s, Saggart. Thanks to goals from Paudie Conlon and Aidan Mulvey, they developed a commanding nine-point interval cushion (2-9 to 0-6).

They encountered a great deal of resistance on the resumption, but they had already done enough to claim the spoils. Goals were the order of the day on Collins Avenue, where Whitehall Colmcille were 6-10 to 4-6 victors over Naomh Fionnbarra.

This was an 11th consecutive defeat for Fionnbarra, but they are still two points clear of St Patrick’s, Palmerstown - who suffered a comprehensive reversal away to Round Tower Clondalkin (2-18 to 0-6).

Pat’s are set to host their Cabra counterparts at Glenauline Park on July 27 in a do-or-die relegation battle.

Elsewhere, Round Tower Lusk climbed up the table by virtue of getting the better of Raheny at St Anne’s Park (1-10 to 0-10).

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