HOLDERS Doolan’s Cow and Martin Harvey Solicitors meet for the second time in a decider in Saturday’s 65th Shield Final in St Colman’s Park.
Doolan’s will be appearing in a record-breaking sixth consecutive final and will be attempting to win the competition for a fourth time. In 41 ties dating back to 2015/16, the champions have only lost four ties, scoring 164 goals and conceding just 34. James Cotter is out in front with 44 of the total followed by fellow strikers Tony O’Reilly (40), Aaron Hennessy (21) and Jamie Murphy (20).
Their opponents, Martin Harvey’s will be hoping for third time lucky after losing out to Doolan’s in the shield final of 2021 and last season’s premier cup final. Harveys impressed in the semi-final win over UCC United and after a decent run in the junior cup competitions and unbeaten in the league so far, will go into the final full of confidence.
JONE bounced back from their previous weekend’s first loss to Arc Rovers by remaining in contention following a hard-earned win over Suro Cars.
Suro keeper Colum Dineen was excellent in the early stages as the visitors dominated but had no chance in preventing Bernard Power putting JONE one up before half-time. The hosts were well in the hunt right up till five minutes from the end when Diarmuid Kenneally powered in a header from a corner to seal all three points.
Leaders Arc Rovers remain in pole position after accounting for a much-improved Telus eleven who firmly put behind their 10-1 drubbing at the hands of Crookstown Utd. in their last outing. After a goalless the sticky Regional Park surface forced a Telus defender into a late challenge on a striker baring down on goal which resulted in his dismissal.
The visitors' resolve was finally broken on the hour when Liam O’Sullivan Ryan put Rovers one-up from a tap-in at the far post. Within minutes a Denis Desmond cross was headed in by Sean Philpott for one-one before Callan Dempsey teed up Alan O’Connell for a shock 2-1 lead for 10-man Telus.
Rovers made full use of the extra man to level through Ryan Meaney and tagged on two further goals from Liam Power to seal a sixth straight win as a gallant International tried in vain to hold out.
Trend picked up a much-needed away win, hitting bottom club The Weigh Inn for six courtesy of Matias Rodriguez (2), Matheus Freire, Rafael Barreiro, Breno Messias and José Guerra.
After Ian Scott set up Arainn McGrath to chip the keeper for the lead for Council, Kieran O’Regan and Al Maawali put the hosts in control at the break. With the Regional Park pitch cutting up badly, ref Mossie Coughlan did well to control proceedings during which Colon Galvin and McGrath added two more for the winners.
Longboats, last season’s draw specialists, just can’t stop winning at the moment with the in-form Liam Cashman and Neil O’Connell both netting twice along with an own goal to seal a fifth win in six.
Nine-man Jay Bazz had to come from behind to grab a share of the points after Satellite captain Shane Dorgan’s incisive pass led to James Walsh crossing for Jamsie Corcoran to opening the scoring in the first half.
The visitors worked their back into the game and scored a deserved equalizer through Michael Coffey. Walsh and Eric Kennedy impressed for Satellite while Darren McGrath and Chulainn Murray were the pick for Jay Bazz.
The 2018 champions UCC have yet yo get off the mark after going down to an inspired Doolan's for whom Jamie Murphy scored four and Aaron Hennessy one. Ali Ahmidat got one back for United at three down and scored a second with the last kick of the game.
Brew Boys’ impressive run continues to gather momentum after luckless OBS were the latest victims to suffer a heavy defeat. Matty Quish got in for the first after six minutes which was followed by a second from Gareth Fishlock in the 12th minute. Adam Byrne scored a third from a penalty before Gavin Quirke, Fishlock and Quish added further goals before the half ended. The dominant visitors saw out the ninety with three second-half goals from Quirke (2) and Cristian Veste.
Valley Rangers won for the first time at the seventh attempt, putting three past Marlboro Trust at Mayfield Community School. John (Teddy) Noonan was on target twice with Edward Kenneally adding a third to register an important first win for the visitors.