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Friday 3 February 2023 Dublin: 9°C
Donall Farmer/INPHO Cillian O'Connor's goal tipped a tight contest in Ballintubber's favour.
# Connacht SFC
Cillian O'Connor and Ballintubber are into their first ever Connacht final
It took three attempts but Ballintubber finally have their first win in the provincial championship.

Ballintubber 3-10

St Brigid’s 1-13

BALLINTUBBER QUALIFIED FOR their first ever Connacht SFC final after an impressive win over 2013 All-Ireland Club Champions St Brigid’s of Roscommon.

The Mayo champions showed a great aptitude and resolve to strike for scores at key stages in the game and St Brigid’s can have no qualms about the final result.

Inspired by Stephen Broderick and Jason Gibbons at midfield, Ballintubber have now secured their first win in the Connacht championship.

The three-time Mayo Senior champions fell at the first hurdle in the provincial series in 2010 and 2011.

They now go on to play Galway champions Corofin who had a comprehensive 7-20 to 0-6 win over Leitrim champions Aughawillan this afternoon. That final takes place in Castlebar in two weeks.

Ballintubber went in at half-time 2-4 to 0-7 in front. Goals from Padraic O’Connor on 14 minutes and Alan Plunkett on 26 minutes gave them the platform.

Rhuaidhri O'Connor with Cathal McHugh Donall Farmer / INPHO Ruaidhri O'Connor of Ballintubber with Cathal McHugh of Brigid's. Donall Farmer / INPHO / INPHO

They both pointed as did Cillian O’Connor (2) while Senan Kilbride was the main scoring threat for St Brigid’s. Kept on a tight rein from open play throughout, the number fourteen kicked four first half frees while Frankie Dolan, Paddy Mulvihill and Karol Mannion were also on target.

The gauntlet was thrown down to Ballintubber after the resumption. Three points in two minutes from the boot of fired up Frankie Dolan had the game level but Ballintubber’s ability to respond was hugely impressive.

Mayo star Alan Dillon kicked two exceptional points to push Ballintubber two clear but Brigid’s weren’t finished yet. Karol Mannion fired home a super goal on 44 minutes to put the Roscommon champions back in front but yet again Ballintubber’s response was superb.

Shane Curran with Cillian O'Connor Donall Farmer / INPHO St. Brigid's goalkeeper Shane Curran congratulates Cillian O'Connor at the final whistle. Donall Farmer / INPHO / INPHO

Padraic O’Connor pointed straight away after the goal and further points from Stephen Broderick and Alan Plunkett had them in control before Cillian O’Connor all but sealed the game for them, finishing a well worked move to the net and the boys from the Tubber had reeled off 1-3 without reply in seven minutes.

They had to defend stoutly late on as St Brigid’s came charging at them and while a couple of speculative high balls looked dangerous, St Brigid’s did not look like scoring the goal they needed. Frankie Dolan (2) and Adrian Gleeson hit points to have them within two points in injury time but the last say was Ballintubber’s, Cillian O’Connor swinging over a 63rd minute free after his brother Diarmuid was fouled.

Scorers for Ballintubber: Cillian O’Connor 1-3 (0-2fs), Padraic O’Connor 1-2 (0-1 ’45), Alan Plunkett 1-2, Alan Dillon 0-2, Stephen Broderick 0-1.

Scorers for St Brigid’s: Frankie Dolan 0-6 (0-3fs), Karol Mannion 1-1, Senan Kilbride 0-4 (0-6fs), Paddy Mulvihill 0-1, Adrian Gleeson 0-1.

Ballintubber

1. Brendan Walsh

6. Brian Murphy
3. Cathal Hallinan
18. Declan Larkin

2. Michael Plunkett
5. Myles Kelly
7. Ruaidhrí O’Connor

8. Jason Gibbons
9. Stephen Broderick

10. Damien Coleman
12. Diarmuid O’Connor
13. Alan Plunkett

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11. Alan Dillon
14. Cillian O’Connor
15. Padraic O’Connor

Subs for Ballintubber: 17. Joe Geraghty for Kelly (51), 19. Daire Summerville for Coleman (54), 4. Paul Earley for Alan Plunkett (58), 21. Ray Geraghty for Padraic O’Connor (60).

St Brigid’s

1. Shane Curran

7. Niall Grehan
3. Darragh Donnelly
4. Niall McInerney

2. Robbie Kelly
5. Ronan Stack
6. Ian Kilbride

8. Karol Mannion
9. Padraig Kelly

10. Garvan Dolan
13. Cathal McHugh
12. Eddie Egan

15. Paddy Mulvihill
11. Frankie Dolan
14. Senan Kilbride

Subs for St Brigid’s: 22. Darragh Sheehy for Mulvihill (h/t), 19. Gearóid Cunniffe for Robbie Kelly (h/t), 15. Paddy Mulvihill for Egan (47), 18. Adrian Gleeson for McHugh (47), 21. Darren Dolan for Garvan Dolan (56).

Referee: Ray McBrien (Leitrim)

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