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Adrian Mullen, cousin of the Fennelly brothers, hits 1-9 as Cats exact revenge on Dublin

Kilkenny made up for last year’s Leinster MHC defeat to the Dubs in today’s curtain-raiser at Croke Park.

Kilkenny 3-15

Dublin 1-17

Kevin O’Brien reports from Croke Park

KILKENNY ATONED FOR last year’s Leinster MHC final defeat to Dublin with a commanding four-point victory over the same opposition in Croke Park today.

David Keogh and Eoghan OÕNeill with Adrian Mullen Man of the match Adrian Mullen in action Source: Oisin Keniry/INPHO

This was Kilkenny’s fourth provincial crown at this grade in the past five years and their biggest margin of victory since the 2014 final win over the Dubs.

Adrian Mullen, who notched 2-29 in the lead-up to this game, shot the lights out once more with a tally of 1-9. The Ballyhale Shamrocks clubman and team captain comes from good breeding, he’s a first cousin of senior stars Michael and Colin Fennelly.

Sean Ryan, Mullen’s partner in crime in attack, chipped in with an impressive 2-2 from play

Both of these counties have dominated minor hurling in Leinster.

The last time a county other than Dublin or Kilkenny lifted the Leinster MHC title was Offaly in 2000, while 1986 was the last year either one of these counties didn’t appear in the provincial final.

Sean Ryan Source: Donall Farmer/INPHO

Dublin have relied heavily on Sean Currie up to this point and did so again today. He contributed 0-8 of their total but it was Dublin’s lack of goal threat that really separated the teams.

Substitute Enda McDonnell rattled the onion bag late on for the Metropolitans but it arrived too late to inspire a comeback.

Kilkenny had the ball in the net twice in their opening two attacks. Adrian Mullen drilled in a goal inside the opening 30 seconds and then turned provider for Sean Ryan’s well-taken three-pointer.

Sean Currie with Daithi Barron and Niall Brassil Source: Donall Farmer/INPHO

If Dublin were rattled, they didn’t show it. Four points from Sean Currie had them back on level terms by the 17th minute at 0-8 to 2-2.

Cats talisman Mullen had 1-3 on the board by half-time, when his team took in a 2-7 to 0-10 interval lead.

Ryan expertly tucked away his second goal eight minutes into the second-half to put the Cats seven in front. Currie and Liam Murphy did their best to keep Dublin in touch with scores, but Mullen hit five points down the stretch as Kilkenny coasted home.

Scorers for Kilkenny: Adrian Mullen 1-9 (0-4f, 0-1 65), Sean Ryan 2-2, Niall Brasil, Conor Heary, Eoin O’Shea and Jim Ryan 0-1 each.

Scorers for Dublin: Sean Currie 0-8 (0-6f, 0-1 65), David Keogh 0-5 (0-2f), Liam Murphy 0-3, Diarmaid O Floinn 0-1.

Kilkenny

1. Dean Mason  (Ballyhale Shamrocks)

2. Tommy Ronan (Graigue-Ballycallan)
3. Michael Carey (Young Irelands)
4. Darragh Walsh (Piltown)

5. James Brennan (Erins Own)
6. Conor Flynn (Graigue-Ballycallan)
7. Jordan Molloy (O’Loughlin Gaels)

8. Eoin O’Shea (O’Loughlin Gaels)
9. Niall Brassil (James Stephens)

10. Jesse Roberts (Graigue-Ballycallan)
11. Conor Heary (O’Loughlin Gaels)
12. Jim Ryan (Rower-Inistiogue)

13. Daithi Barron (Thomastown)
14. Adrian Mullen (Ballyhale Shamrocks)
15. Sean Ryan (Graigue-Ballycallan)

Subs:

20. Niall Brennan (Lisdowney) for Roberts (22)
23. Eoin Cody (Ballyhale Shamrocks) for Heary (50)
22. John Dowd (Erin’s Own) for O’Shea (58)

Dublin

1. Conor O’Donoghue (Ballyboden St-Enda’s)

2. Andrew Dunphy (St Brigid’s)
3. Ben McHugh (Raheny)
4. Tommy Kinnane (Naomh Mearnog)

5. Eoghan O’Neill (St Vincent’s)
6. Luke Walsh (Lucan Sarsfields)
7. Lee Gannon (Whitehall Colmcilles)

8. David Keogh (Thomas Davis)
9. Michael Murphy (Na Fianna)

10. Mark Grogan (Kilmacud Crokes)
11. Ben Coffey (Lucan Sarsfields)
12. Diarmaid Ó Floinn (Cuala)

13. Liam Murphy (Cuala)
14. Kevin Desmond (Ballyboden St-Enda’s)
15. Seán Currie (Na Fianna)

Subs:

22. Luke McDwyer (Ballyboden St Enda’s) for Murphy (ht)
23. Enda O’Donnell (Whitehall Colmcille) for Grogan (40)
19. Jason Byrne (Naomh Barrog) for Desmond (50)
18. Kevin Burke (Na Fianna) for O’Neill (54)
17. Tom Aherne (Ballinteer St John’s) for Gannon (59)

Referee: Alfie Devine (Westmeath)

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About the author:

Kevin O'Brien

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