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Dublin: 6°C Sunday 16 May 2021

Bray take step towards safety with big win over St Pat's

The hosts dominated proceedings for long periods but were undone by goals from Ger Pender and Hugh Douglas.

Hugh Douglas was on target for Bray tonight (file pic).
Hugh Douglas was on target for Bray tonight (file pic).
Image: Donall Farmer/INPHO

St Patrick’s Athletic 1
Bray Wanderers 2

BRAY WANDERERS MOVED a small bit closer to safety in the SSE Airtricity Premier Division with a 2-1 win over St Patrick’s Athletic at Richmond Park tonight.

The hosts dominated proceedings for long periods but were undone by goals from Ger Pender and Hugh Douglas after a couple of defensive mistakes.

Liam Buckley will be disappointed that his side didn’t take something from the game after they had taken the lead through a thunderbolt from Graham Kelly.

Top scorer Christy Fagan returned to the St Pat’s side after he missed Friday’s derby with Shamrock Rovers, but it was Bray, who had the weekend off after their fixture at Longford was postponed, that started brightly.

They had an excellent chance on 19 minutes when Dylan Connolly got inside Ger O’Brien before he raced towards goal from the left to shoot across Brendan Clarke, but the Pat’s stopper got down well to smother the effort.

Mark Timlin then hit a free-kick from 30 yards with his optimistic shot hitting the target, but Peter Cherrie dived low to his left to save well.

Despite being second best in terms of possession, Bray should’ve went one up seven minutes before the break when Connolly got in behind again after a threaded through ball from Darragh Noone, but Clarke denied the Wanderers winger again in their second one-on-one duel.

The first half was lacking in quality until just before the break, when Kelly hammered in the opener. Jamie McGrath controlled in the box before neatly creating some space and teeing up the midfielder, who emphatically smashed home from 20 yards.

Connolly’s pace on the break was causing problems for Pat’s though and just over 10 minutes after the resumption, the visitors found an equaliser. Clarke fumbled a cross and after the Pat’s defence failed to clear their lines, Pender took advantage to swivel and shoot on the half volley to level matters.

The home side looked rattled after the concession of the Bray opener and within a couple minutes, they were behind.

Rory Feely dwelled for too long on the edge of his own area, which allowed the alert Douglas to pinch the ball off his toes and punish him by curling into the top corner to give the Seagulls the lead.

Ger O’Brien responded by curling a couple of efforts on the Bray goal in an attempt to rectify his defence’s mistakes, and then Lee Desmond’s left-foot effort forced Cherrie to parry away.

The home side couldn’t rescue a point though, with Bray nearly getting a third on the break, as substitute Chris Lyons went through on goal but blazed over.

ST PATRICK’S ATHLETIC: Brendan Clarke, Ger O’Brien, Michael Barker, Rory Feely, Ian Bermingham; Lee Desmond, Graham Kelly, Mark Timlin (Billy Dennehy, 73), Conan Byrne, Jamie McGrath (Darragh Markey, 85); Christy Fagan.

BRAY WANDERERS: Peter Cherrie; Hugh Douglas, Tim Clancy, Connor Kenna, Kevin Lynch; John Sullivan (Alan McNally, 90), Karl Moore, Dylan Connolly (Jason Marks, 86), Darragh Noone, Mark Salmon; Ger Pender (Chris Lyons, 79).

Referee: Derek Tomney

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