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Dublin: 13 °C Wednesday 21 August, 2019
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Stunning Mahdy strike earns UCD crucial win while defeat comes as blow to Bohs

A brilliant 1-0 win for the Students at the UCD Bowl.

Yoyo Mahdy celebrates scoring.
Yoyo Mahdy celebrates scoring.
Image: Laszlo Geczo/INPHO

UCD 1

Bohemians 0

A STUNNING STRIKE from Yoyo Mahdy and a string out outstanding saves from Conor Kearns earned UCD a 1-0 win over Bohemians that lifts them three points clear of relegation.

The striker burst the net with a powerful drive after eight minutes and, inspired by captain Paul Doyle, a young Students side made it seven points from nine against the lacklustre Gypsies.

Tempers spilled over after the final whistle when Shamrock Rovers fan Kearns celebrated in front of the away fans, prompting a melee involving both team’s benches.

The UCD Bowl could perhaps have done without the midsummer sunshine that draped the pitch before kick-off and instead with some rain to loosen up the slightly arid-looking surface.

Instead, there arrived a thunderbolt, not from the sky but from the boot of Mahdy, the striker winning a 50/50 challenge with James Finnerty before sending a rocket past James Talbot.

What had been a cagey opening eight minutes quickly became anything but as Bohs – playing 4-4-2 with Keith Ward and Danny Mandroiu, neither an out-and-out striker, up top – opened up.

Jason McClelland forced a routine save from Talbot with another shot from distance while Mandroiu was wasteful when presented with a free-kick opportunity from 25 yards.

Bohs struggled to break through UCD’s high offside line but the first time they did they very nearly drew level as Ward picked out Kevin Devaney, but Conor Kearns did brilliantly to smother his shot.

Finnerty turned defence very quickly into attack as he dispossessed Mahdy and fed Darragh Leahy before continuing his run into the box but, upon retrieving the ball, he shot straight at Kearns.

Daniel Mandroiu and Dara Keane Bohemians' Daniel Mandroiu and Dara Keane of UCD. Source: Laszlo Geczo/INPHO

Bohs dominated the second half but were outworked in midfield by a determined UCD side and frequently resorted to direct football.

One such ball saw Ward shrug off two defenders and dink what looked a perfectly-weighted lob only for Kearns to produce a long limb and somehow pluck the ball out of the air.

The visitors had a string off half-chances but the best came in the fifth (of eight) minute of injury time as Kearns stopped Darragh Leahy’s point-blank header before smothering the loose ball.

UCD: Kearns; Tobin, McEvoy, Farrell; O’Farrell, Keaney, Doyle, McClelland, Dignam; Mahdy, Kinsella Bishop (Keane 67).

Bohemians: Talbot; Pender, Barker (Devoy 79), Finnerty, Leahy; Buckley, McCourt (Levingston 56), Mandroiu; Ward, Devaney (Swan 56), Wade-Slater.

Referee: Derek Tomney.

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