MFC final: Forde leads way as O'Mahonys surprise Ratoath

August 01, 2010

Navan O'Mahony's celebrate with the Meath MFC Cup at Pairc Tailtean
Team captain Alan Forde scored the only goal as Navan O'Mahonys overcame a strongly fancied Ratoath in the MFC final at Pairc Tailteann on Friday night.

O'Mahonys ...... 1-7
Ratoath ............ 0-9

Forde netted at the hospital end in the eighth minute after a strong run through the Ratoath defence to leave it 1-1 to 0-1.

Despite bossing the possession stakes, Ratoath didn't lead again until the 42nd minute when Bobby O'Brien put over his third score from play. That left it 0-9 to 1-5 and despite an abundance of opportunities, Dermot Rooney's charges didn't register again.

Parity was restored for the fourth and final time when Forde pointed soon after. The final quarter produced just one score, an excellent Cathal Smyth effort from a free out on the left in the 48th minute.

A physically stronger Ratoath side pushed forward in search of an equaliser in the latter stages, but some poor marksmanship and solid defending from the likes of Gary Power, James Murphy and Conor Finnegan ensured O'Mahonys prevailed.

The first of three pointed frees from Bryan McMahon earned Ratoath an early advantage as they looked to add the MFC to the Division 1 FL crown won earlier in the year.

A Donal Callan free levelled matters before Forde goaled. Points from Bobby O'Brien, Cian O'Brien and McMahon frees tied things again by the 15th minute.

A Lee Dixon effort put O'Mahonys back in front where they remained for the rest of the half. A Smyth free in the 26th minute doubled their advantage.

Cian O'Brien pulled a point back for Ratoath from a free but Forde cut in from the left before fisting over in the 29th minute.

In first-half stoppage time Bobby O'Brien pointed for Ratoath while Navan O'Mahonys 'keeper Jack Walsh advanced smartly to prevent Gavin Eiffe goaling for the side in blue and gold.

O'Mahonys led by 1-4 to 0-6 at half-time and soon increased their lead with another Smyth free. Three points in a five-minute spell seemed to swing the scales Ratoath's way but the Brews Hill side's spirit was rewarded.

In his acceptance speech Alan Forde remembered Paddy O'Brien, the legendary Navan O'Mahonys mentor who passed away in June.

O'Mahonys - J. Walsh; D. Rogers, J. Murphy, S. Stafford; G. Power, B. Dillon, E. Ferris; C. Finnegan, T. Cox; E. Murtagh, A. Forde (1-2), C. Smyth (0-3, frees); L. Dixon (0-1), B. McEvoy, D. Callan (0-1, free). Subs - K. Reilly for Ferris (26 mins), V. Moore for McEvoy (55 mins).

Ratoath - A. Smith; P. Flood, C. McGill, B. Power; G. Reilly, P. Haslam, K. Gorman; F. McManus (0-1), C. O'Brien (0-2,1 free); B. O'Brien (0-3), G. Rooney, G. Eiffe; G. Jordan, P. Kennedy, B. McMahon (0-3, frees. Subs - M. Daly for Kennedy (40 mins), C. Nugent for Gorman (43 mins).

Referee - J. Curley (Moynalty).

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