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Dublin: 16°C Tuesday 22 September 2020

Premier duo Forde and McGrath shoot UL into third Fitzgibbon final in four years

Jason Forde and John McGrath bagged 3-9 between them as UL saw off IT Carlow.

UL 4-16

IT Carlow 0-19

Tomás McCarthy reports from WIT Arena

TIPPERARY SCORE GETTERS Jason Forde and John McGrath fired UL into a third Fitzgibbon Cup final in four years at a bitterly cold WIT Arena tonight.

The Premier pair scored 3-9 between them to see off a ferocious IT Carlow effort.

The goal power in the maroon and white ranks proved too hot to handle. Two second half majors in as many minutes settled this tie.

DJ Carey’s challengers hit four points in a row during the third quarter to close within two. The favourites didn’t panic. On 45 minutes, Kevin O’Brien passed for McGrath to shoot home from close range.

From the next attack, sub Pat Ryan slammed to the net after Ian Galvin’s point attempt struck the post. Forde buried a penalty in the last minute to confirm a slightly flattering nine-point victory.

Gary Kirby’s side have raised thirteen green flags across four outings. All six forwards registered from play by the 35th minute here.

Forde’s first three-pointer on 27 minutes gave UL a 1-12 to 0-10 interval advantage. The sides were level six times in an enthralling half hour of hurling.

UL led 5-3 after ten minutes but a hard working Carlow outfit enjoyed a purple patch in the second quarter. Three points on the spin from Colin Dunford, Mark Russell and Cathal Dunbar snuck them 0-7 to 0-6 ahead. Wexford forward Dunbar ended the first thirty with three singles.

UL blitzed their opponents with four rapid points. Three minutes before the break, Barry Murphy and John McGrath combined to tee up Forde who lashed past Enda Rowland. The only negative for the leaders was an injury to Clare defender David Fitzgerald.

McGrath stretched the gap to six on the resumption before Carlow rallied. Top scorer Martin Kavanagh, who claimed eight points in all, led the fightback with Russell and Richie Leahy also on target. That double blast from McGrath and Ryan ended their interest.

The winners have recorded thirteen goals and 82 points in this competition to date.

Source: HE GAA/YouTube

Scorers for UL: Jason Forde 2-5 (1-0 pen, 2fs, 1 65′), John McGrath 1-4, Pat Ryan 1-0, Tony Kelly, Ian Galvin 0-2 each, Kevin O’Brien, Tom Morrissey, Barry Murphy 0-1 each.

Scorers for IT Carlow: Martin Kavanagh 0-8 (5fs), Mark Russell, Cathal Dunbar 0-3 each, Colin Dunford, Richie Leahy 0-2 each, Jack Fagan 0-1.


1. David McCarthy (Glenroe, Limerick)

2. Aidan McGuane (Kilmaley, Clare)
3. Conor Cleary (Kilmaley, Clare)
4. Sean Finn (Bruff, Limerick)

5. Gearoid Hegarty (St Patrick’s, Limerick)
6. Barry Heffernan (Nenagh Eire Og, Tipperary)
7. David Fitzgerald (Inagh-Kilnamona, Clare)

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8. Tony Kelly (Ballyea, Clare)
9. Paul Maher (Kilsheelan-Kilcash, Tipperary)

10. Ian Galvin (Clonlara, Clare)
11. Kevin O’Brien (Patrickswell, Limerick)
12. Tom Morrissey (Ahane, Limerick)

13. John McGrath (Loughmore-Castleiney, Tipperary)
14. Jason Forde (Silvermines, Tipperary)
15. Barry Murphy (Doon, Limerick)

19. Ronan Lynch (Na Piarsaigh, Limerick) for Fitzgerald (25)
18. Pat Ryan (Doon, Limerick) for Murphy (39)
24. Michael Mullins (Gort, Galway) for Maher (54)
22. Stephen Roche (Kilnadeema-Leitrim, Galway) for O’Brien (61)

IT Carlow

1. Enda Rowland (Abbeyleix, Laois)

4. Ross Brown (Colligan, Waterford)
3. Kevin Hannafin (St Brendan’s, Kerry)
2. Shane Reck (Oylegate Glenbrien, Wexford)

7. Micheal Harney (Bunmahon, Waterford)
6. James Doyle (St Mullins, Carlow)
5. Michael Redmond (Rathnure, Wexford)

8. Colin Dunford (Colligan, Waterford)
9. Richie Leahy (Rower Inistioge, Kilkenny)

12. Charles Dwyer (Ballinakill, Laois)
11. Martin Kavanagh (St Mullins, Carlow)
10. Sean Downey (Ballinakill, Laois)

14. Jack Fagan (De La Salle, Waterford)
15. Cathal Dunbar (Realt na Mara Ballygarrett, Wexford)
13. Mark Russell (Lattin Cullen, Tipperary)


18. Seamus Casey (Oylegate Glenbrien, Wexford) for Downey (50)

Referee: Cathal McAllister (Cork)

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Tomas McCarthy

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