Glenn Ryan's reign as Kildare senior football manager got off to a winning start as they defeated Westmeath 0-19 to 0-8 in their O'Byrne Cup encounter at St Conleth's Park this afternoon.
The Lilywhites were full value for this eleven-point victory producing a commanding first-half performance that gave them a 0-11 to 0-4 advantage. Raheens forward Paddy Woodgate marked his return to the county fold by delivering an eye-catching display which yielded 0-7, while Jimmy Hyland chipped in with six from play.
Woodgate slotted the opening two points of the game, while Padraig Tuohy, Paul Cribbin, Adam Steed and Hyland followed up with further scores. Westmeath could only muster one white flag in the opening 20 minutes as the Lilywhites took control of proceedings.
Ray Connellan pulled back a point for the Lake County but after Hyland cancelled it out at the other end, that was as close as the visitors got in the second period as Kildare, with Hyland prominent in attack, pushed clear.
Dublin’s Eoin Murchan with Jordan Hayes of Offaly. ©INPHO/James Crombie.
At Bord na Mona O'Connor Park, Ciaran Kilkenny inspired a young and inexperienced Dublin side to a 2-12 to 0-13 success over Offaly, aided by a second-half goal by Tom Lahiff and another from substitute Warren Egan in injury-time.
The Dubs played with the breeze in the opening half and by the short whistle, they had established a 0-9 to 0-7 lead. Sean Bugler clipped over three points from play for the winners in that half and the accurate Ruairi McNamee kept Offaly in touch.
Lahiff's strike opened the second-half scoring but Offaly were back to within the minimum by the 47th minute with a run of four unanswered points. Five-time All-Star Kilkenny exerted a major influence thereafter as Ballyboden St Enda's star Egan wrapped up the spoils.
A rampant first-half display saw Wexford comfortably overcome Laois on a 6-10 to 0-13 scoreline in Hollymount. The Model men were in devastating form as Tom Byrne, Eoghan Nolan and Ben Brosnan accounted for 6-4 of their match winning tally. The damage was done for Billy Sheehan's new-look side by the first water-break, by the end of which they trailed 3-3 to 0-3.
Meanwhile, Longford, under new manager Billy O'Loughlin, overturned an eight-point deficit early in the second-half to oust Louth in Lanesboro, 2-13 to 0-14. Oran Kenny's goal at the third-quarter mark was a crucial strike for the midlanders who were 0-12 to 0-5 in arrears at half-time. Substitute Ross McNerney levelled the game before raising his side's second green flag to secure an impressive comeback win.
O'Byrne Cup SF round 1 results
Kildare 0-19 Westmeath 0-8
Longford 2-13 Louth 0-14
Dublin 2-12 Offaly 0-13
Wexford 6-10 Laois 0-13Tweet