Duleek sat on course

May 06, 2003
A two-point win over St. Ultan's keeps Duleek nicely on track for a place in the quarter-finals of the intermediate championship. Duleek 1-8 St. Ultan's 1-6 Both teams were unbeaten going into the game with Duleek having taken full points from their two games and St. Ultans having drawn twice. Duleek played with the strong wind in the first half and were hoping to build up a lead to take into the second half at Walterstown. Peter Curran got Duleek off the mark after 1 minute with a free kick. St . Ultans replied 2 minutes later to level the game. St. Ultans scored their second free after 7 minutes before Conall McGinley scored two points in the 10th and 12th minutes. Duleek dominated the remainder of the half with Karl McDonnell and Stephen Murphy's experience too much for the last years Meath Minor Paul Murray. Curran scored twice in the last 10 minutes of the first half to leave an acceptable 3 point cushion to Duleek going in at half time. However St. Ultans had other plans when a well worked move involving 6 or 7 passes resulted in the ball ending up in the Duleek net. Half time St. Ultans 1-2 Duleek 0-5 Duleek knew they had it all to do in the second half. Coach Barney Rock's talk at half time paid dividends as Duleek started the second half in explosive fashion. Curran had a point registered after 1 minute and following a scramble in the St. Ultans square Bryan Cudden reacted quickest and blasted to the net. This was the cushion Duleek needed playing against the strong wind. Duleek backs restricted the St. Ultans attack to just 4 points in the second half the last two coming in injury time. Curran pointed again after 10 minutes to extend Duleek's lead to 4 points. It must be worrying however for the Duleek's selectors in that for all their possession they failed to score in the last 20 minutes of the game. Ciaran Byrne was introduced for the injured Gordon Hynes midway through the second and slotted into his familiar centre half back slot. His timely interceptions helped steady the half back line. Stephen Murphy also played a bit deeper towards the end of the game and capped off a superb performance with well directed clearances when called upon. St. Ultans clawed back the lead with points in the 15th minute and those two injury time scores. Curran recorded his 6th point near the end to leave Duleek 2 point winners in the end. With Oldcastle beating Carnaross the 4th round top of the table clash between Duleek and Oldcastle should be one to look forward to.    Best for Duleek: In a good all round performance Kevin Smith, Stephen Murphy, Karl McDonnell and Peter Curran caught the eye. Duleek: Ricky Nolan, Mark Cudden, Colin Crosby, Kevin Smith, David Cosby, Paul Martin, Gordon Hynes, Stephen Murphy, Karl McDonnell, Peter Curran(0-06, 3 frees), Michael Johnson, Conall McGinley(0-02), Adrian Joyce, Robbie O'Neill, Bryan Cudden (1:00). Subs: Colin Duignan for R.O'Neill, Ciaran Byrne for G. Hynes


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