Thursday 9 February 2023 Dublin: 6°C
Ryan Byrne/INPHO Ballymun Kickhams' Andrew McCaul celebrates with Dean Rock after the game.
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Trailing by 5 at half-time, Ballymun power past Na Fianna to set-up Kilmacud semi-final
Dean Rock kicked eight points for the winners.

Ballymun Kickhams 1-18

Na Fianna 2-13

BALLYMUN KICKHAMS WILL play Kilmacud Crokes in the Dublin SFC semi-finals after they powered past neighbours Na Fianna to seal their progression from the last eight.

Brendan Hackett’s side overturned a five point half-time deficit and were five ahead in the closing stages before Niall Cooper scored a deflected goal with the last kick of the game for Na Fianna.

Ballyboden St Enda’s will take on St Jude’s in the other semi-final as arguably the four strongest sides in the county remain in the competition.

In this unique year where club and county seasons have been flipped, Ballymun have a big opportunity to end an eight-year wait without the Dublin SFC crown. 

Their county stars looked fresh, particularly Dean Rock who over eight points, three from play, and James McCarthy.

Elsewhere, Fiach Andrews added 0-3 and substitute Andrew McCaul netted a crucial second-half goal for the victors.

It was a disappointing conclusion for Na Fianna after a promising start but had they scored just 0-3 in the second-half prior to Cooper’s late consolation goal.

Lar Norton’s men were without the injured Eoin Murchan and they missed his energy, particularly after the interval when legs started to tire.

Ballymun started well with Paddy Small and Rock firing over early scores, but once Na Fianna settled into the game they looked more potent in attack.  

They went in five ahead at half-time after Conor Hugh’s 30th minute goal that he finished into the bottom corner. It came from a move started by Jonny Cooper in the defence before James Doran played a glorious pass into McHugh.

Doran was a late addition to the Na Fianna team, as was Gus Farrell who clipped over two points in the opening period from wing-back. 

jonny-cooper-dejected-after-being-black-carded Ryan Byrne / INPHO Jonny Cooper was black carded late on for Na Fianna. Ryan Byrne / INPHO / INPHO

Ballymun enjoyed a high-octane start to the second-half, scoring the first six points without reply. Three of those came from Rock placed balls as they shook off the loss of Paddy Small to injury.

An Aaron Byrne free was all Na Fianna could muster in the third quarter. They had a glorious goal opportunity when a slick move involving Eoin O’Dea and James Doran sent Eoin McHugh through on goal but he opted to pass to Conor McHugh instead of shooting himself.

McHugh shot wide from a narrow angle and things were about to get worse for the Glasnevin outfit. In the next play, Cameron McCormack’s looping handpass found Andrew McCaul in behind the defence and he calmly placed the ball into the corner to send Ballymun 1-15 to 1-11 ahead.

Jonny Cooper was black carded late in the day for a drag down. His brother Niall saw a deflected shot fly in past Evan Comerford, but the final whistle sounded shortly afterwards on Na Fianna’s season.

Scorers for Ballymun Kickhams: Dean Rock 0-8 (0-5f), Fiach Andrews 0-3, Andrew McCaul 1-1 (0-1m), Paddy Small 0-2, Dillon Keating, Carl Keeley, James McCarthy and Jason Whelan 0-1 each.

Scorers for Na Fianna: Conor McHugh 1-2 (0-1m), Aaron Byrne 0-5 (0-4f), Niall Cooper 1-0, Gus Farrell and James Doran 0-2 each, Glenn O’Reilly and David Lacey 0-1 each.

Ballymun Kickhams

1. Evan Comerford

2. Darragh Conlon
3. Philly McMahon
3. Eoin Dolan

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7. Leon Young
6. John Small
5. Carl Keeley

10. Cameron McCormack
9. James McCarthy

14. Fiach Andrews
18. Dillon Keating
8. Brian Ashton

13. Paddy Small
11. David Byrne
15. Dean Rock


21. Aaron Elliot for Ashton (23)
12. Jason Whelan for Keating (ht)
23. Andrew McCaul for Small (33)
17. Eamon Hill for Young (57)
25. James Burke for Dolan (60)

Na Fianna

1. Stephen Murray

6. Jonny Cooper
5. Dean Ryan
2. Eoin O’Dea

7. Niall McGovern
3. Niall Cooper
23. Gus Farrell

8. Eoin McHugh
9. Paddy Quinn

10. Glenn O’Reilly
15. David Lacey
12. David Quinn

11. Aaron Byrne
14. Conor McHugh
18. James Doran


17. Alasdar Fitzgerald for Quinn (42)
21. Sean Caffrey for Quinn (52)
20. Adam Rafter for O’Reilly (52)

Referee: Seamus Farrelly

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