Home Sport GAA Laois 2-17 Wicklow 1-8

Laois 2-17 Wicklow 1-8

Ambrose Doran and Alan Farrell in the Laois warm up before taking on DIT in the O'Byrne Cup at Crettyard. Picture: Alf Harvey/HRPhoto.ie

Ruairi O’Connor helped himself to 1-6 as the Laois senior footballers continued their unbeaten start in the O’Byrne Cup thanks to a 2-17 to 1-8 win over Wicklow in Greystones on Wednesday night.

Laois trailed 1-5 to 0-7 at the break but an early second-half goal from O’Connor – after a sublime pass from Ambrose Doran – turned the game in their favour and they never looked back from that moment on.

Doran quickly stretched the lead with a nice point and then Gary Walsh got Laois’s second goal when he came in along the endline and finished to the bottom corner.

Laois fielded a much-changed side from the one that got the better of DIT on Sunday as manager Peter Creedon didn’t use any of the U-21 players.

Doran got the game’s first score in the second minute with a lovely point off his left foot and after Mountmellick’s Eoin Keogh pulled off a point-blank save to deny Wicklow a goal at the other end, O’Connor curled over a free to double the Laois lead.
Brendan Kennedy and Paul Kingston swapped points before Wicklow veteran Seanie Furlong gave the home side the lead when he smashed a close-range effort to the back of the net.

Wicklow stayed ahead after that. O’Connor, Doran and Walsh all pointed to keep Laois in touch but a Furlong free before the break meant Wicklow had a one-point lead as the half-time whistle blew.

The early Laois goals knocked the wind out of Wicklow’s sails and although Ambrose Doran was given a red card for an off-the-ball incident, Laois hit a string of unanswered points.

Walsh and Sean Ramsbottom hit two each while Ross Munnelly – now in his 15th season – Jamie Farrell and O’Connor also found the range.
Wicklow’s Darren Hayden also got his marching orders after being singled out for his part in a brief scuffle but it made little difference as Laois cruised home.

They now play Meath in Stradbally at 7pm with the winners of that game going through to the semi-finals.
Doran will be suspended following his sending off while Matthew Campion and Gareth Dillon both went off injured.

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Steven Miller is owner and managing editor of LaoisToday.ie. From Laois, Steven studied Journalism in DCU and has 14 years experience in the media, almost 10 of those in an editorial role. Husband of Emily, father of William and Lillian, he's happiest when he's telling stories or kicking a point.