John McVitty/INPHO Aidan Breen challenges Down's Daniel Guinness.
Down on the up

Down's attacking quality sees off Fermanagh in Enniskillen

The Mournmen will face Cavan in the Ulster semi-finals after a comfortable eight-point win.

Down 1-15
Fermanagh 0-10

Declan Bogue reports from Brewster Park, Enniskillen

DOWN’S SUPERIOR ATTACKING quality told in the second half as they figured out the puzzle set by an inexperienced Fermanagh team. In truth, it became so, so easy for the Mournemen.  

Fermanagh had abandoned the more attacking style that they experimented with to poor results pre-lockdown and set up a wall of defenders. 

As you might expect, Down mirrored that, setting up a red wall that Donald Trump might have hoped for last week. 

Ryan McMenamin’s panel was stretched, with three teenage Championship debutants in defence; goalkeeper Sean McNally, corner-back Luke Flanagan and wing-back Josh Largo-Ellis. 

Whereas, Jonny Cassidy and Darragh McGurn are just 20. 

From the team that played against Monaghan in their last Championship outing, they were down eight players. 

Down are a more settled team in Paddy Tally’s second year in charge, and could call on Kevin McKernan, ten years after winning an All-Star to organise matters in the backline. 

The first half was almost entirely even, Down’s 24 attacks to Fermanagh’s 23, the home side losing possession 11 times to Down’s 10. 

It was however lit up by a spectacular Barry O’Hagan point and a big shift from Tomás Corrigan who gave marker Gerard Collins a tough time in shooting his way to four points. 

Down looked to have more options in their forward line and because of their probing they managed to gather three frees and one from play from Donal O’Hare to go in at half-time 0-7 to 0-6 ahead. 

Down’s ability to make more of their chances began to tell in the second half. A burst of pace from captain Caolan Mooney stretched the cover and he laid off to Daniel Guinness to square to O’Hare who palmed to the net. 

A three-point lead established at this point was added to with more excellent points from Barry O’Hagan, Fermanagh offering precious little in response with five wides and four shots dropped short. 

Down will now face Cavan in Sunday’s Ulster semi-final, with the opposition facing their fifth game in five weeks.

Scorers for Fermanagh: T Corrigan 0-6, 4f, 1m, C Corrigan, D McGurn, C Jones, D Teague, P McCusker 0-1 each

Scorers for Down: D O’Hare 1-4, 3f, B O’Hagan 0-4, J Johnston 0-2, C Mooney and R Johnston 0-2 each, C Quinn 0-1 each


1. Sean McNally (Teemore Shamrocks)

2. Jonny Cassidy (Enniskillen Gaels)

3. Kane Connor (Belnaleck)

4. Luke Flanagan (Derrylin)

5. Josh Largo Ellis (Irvinestown)

6. James McMahon (Roslea)

7. Cian McManus (Teemore)

20. Richie O’Callaghan (Enniskillen)

9. Eoin Donnelly (Coa)

10. Ciaran Corrigan (Maguiresbridge)

11. Darragh McGurn (Belnaleck)

12. Aidan Breen (Tempo Maguires)

13. Stephen McGullion (Derrygonnelly)

14. Tomás Corrigan (Kinawley)

15. Declan McCusker (Ederney)

Subs: C Jones for McGullion (33 – 35, Blood sub), D Teague for Breen (HT), S Cassidy for O’Callaghan (HT),  K O’Donnell for McManus (52m – Blood sub), R Jones for McMahon (58m), C Jones for C Corrigan (65m), P McCusker for D McCusker (65m)


1. Rory Burns (Castlewellan)

2. Peter Fegan (Burren)

3. Patrick Murdoch (Warrenpoint)

4. Pierce Laverty (Saval)

5. Gerard Collins (Downpatrick)

6. Kevin McKernan (Burren)

7. Daniel Guinness (Carryduff)

8. Caolan Mooney (Rostrevor)

9. Johnny Flynn (Loughinisland)

10. Barry O’Hagan (Clonduff)

11. Paul Devlin (Kilcoo)

12. Conor Poland (Longstone)

13. Jerome Johnston (Kilcoo)

14. Donal O’Hare (Burren)

15. Ceilium Doherty (Kilcoo)

Subs: L Kerr for Devlin (45m), C Quinn for O’Hare (47m), R Johnston for Poland (58m), J Guinness for O’Hagan (65m), C McCartan for McKernan (67m)

Referee: Barry Cassidy (Derry)






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