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Kerry and Kildare through to Christy Ring Cup final

The sides had wins over Mayo and Meath respectively today.

Image: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Kerry 3-20

Mayo 1-18

FIRST HALF GOALS from Shane Nolan, Padraig Boyle and David Butler saw Kerry into a second consecutive Christy Ring Cup final with an eight point win over Mayo in Castlebar today.

The Kingdom started the faster of the two teams – Nolan netting in the first minute – before establishing a 1-6 to no score lead after 20 minutes; Ciaran Charlton finally putting the hosts on the scoreboard with a point soon after.

However, it didn’t take long for Boyle to score Kerry’s second goal and the game was effectively over as a contest when David Butler’s maximum gave them a 3-14 to 0-5 half-time lead.

To their credit, the home side fought back gamely in the second half and Sean Regan’s goal gave them some hope.

However, they could never close the gap sufficiently to put Eamon Kelly’s men under any real pressure and last year’s beaten finalists ran out comfortable winners in the end.

Kildare 1-18

Meath 0-14

Kildare will be their opponents in the final after a seven point win over Meath in Trim.

It was sweet revenge for Kildare who lost to the same opponents in the final of the Kehoe Cup earlier this year and they couldn’t have asked for a better start when Tony Murphy found the net after just 20 seconds.

The two sides were pretty evenly matched for the rest of the first half which allowed the Lilywhites to take a 1-9 to 0-7 lead into the break.

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However, the hosts did have a chance to cut the gap dramatically when they were awarded a penalty soon after the restart but captain Stephen Clynch saw his effort saved by Kildare goalkeeper Paul Dermody.

Both sides struggled for accuracy in the second period and the hosts’ challenge faded when full-back Neil McLoughlin picked up a second yellow seven minutes from time.

Kildare and Kerry will now meet in the final in Croke Park next Saturday.

Down 5-24

Armagh 2-15

In the day’s relegation decider, first half goals from Johnny McCusker, James Coyle and Michael Turley helped last year’s winners Down retain their Christy Ring status at the expense of Armagh.

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