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Dublin: 5°C Friday 14 May 2021

Impressive injury return for star forward as Armagh record huge win over Tyrone to book Ulster final spot

Back with a bang: Aimee Mackin inspired the Orchard county to a third decider in-a-row.

aimee-mackin Aimee Mackin. Source: Laszlo Geczo/INPHO

STAR FORWARD AIMEE Mackin made a memorable return in the Armagh jersey as the Orchard county booked their place in the Ulster final with a comprehensive win over old foes Tyrone today.

In the only inter-county senior ladies football clash of the day, Armagh were 4-14 to 1-10 winners and, in turn, progressed to their third provincial decider in-a-row.

Mackin made a welcome return to the inter-county scene after a 15-month absence; the two-time All-Star hadn’t played for Armagh since last July when she suffered a devastating cruciate injury in a famous win over Cork.

But she was back with a bang today, leading the scoring and potent before the posts as always.

The 23-year-old found the back of the net just eight minutes in, chipping in with several points too. Both she and fellow star player Caroline O’Hanlon started, despite being named on the bench — and both high-scored, as always.

O’Hanlon also among the goal-scorers, as was Mackin’s sister Blaithin and Catherine Marley. All four goals came in the first half, with Armagh scoring 2-6 before the Red Hand registered a score. The hosts’ impressive attacking display continued, and they led 4-11 to 1-3 at the break.

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To Tyrone’s credit, they battled back in the second half — ably led by attacking ace Niamh O’Neill — but Armagh had enough done at that stage as they now eye a first Ulster crown since 2014.

The other semi-final between Monaghan and Cavan, which was scheduled for Friday night, was postponed “due to the unavailability of a number of Cavan players due to Covid,” a statement from Ulster LGFA read on Tuesday.

The TG4 All-Ireland senior football championship is due to kick off on the weekend of 31 October and 1 November, with Armagh and Tyrone meeting once again there.

2019 Ulster champions Donegal face three-in-a-row All-Ireland winners Dublin in Kingspan Breffni Park on the Saturday [throw-in 5pm, live on TG4], Cavan open their campaign against Kerry and Monaghan are in action the following weekend.

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Emma Duffy

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