Duffus (centre) celebrates with his Waterford team-mates. Tommy Dickson/INPHO
high flying

Big win for Waterford as ex-Everton forward downs 10-man Rovers after Burke wonder-strike

The First Division champions are up to second in the table thanks to two goals from Courtney Duffus at the RSC.

Waterford 2
Shamrock Rovers 1

Brendan White reports from the RSC

WATERFORD MADE IT five wins from seven after a 2-1 win at home to Shamrock Rovers to move second in the league table.

A double from Courtney Duffus either side of a superb Graham Burke strike saw another night to remember at the RSC for the Blues against their old rivals.

Trevor Clarke had the first chance for the visitors as his driven cross from the left forced keeper Lawrence Vigouroux to produce an excellent low save after a deflection from Garry Comerford.

But Rovers’ good start took a turn for the worst when they were reduced to ten men after as many minutes. Two yellow cards for Ally Gilchrist after fouls on Dean O’Halloran and Courtney Duffus saw referee Paul McLoughlin produce a red — the second booking looking a little bit harsh.

And it was Waterford who took advantage as they went in front just passed the half hour. Bastien Hery picked out Dylan Barnett on the left. His cross wasn’t cleared by Luke Byrne and Duffus fired under Tomer Chencinski.

The lead lasted just two minutes as Rovers levelled. Brandon Miele found the unmarked Burke on the right and he beautifully curled the ball beyond the dive of Vigouroux from the edge of the penalty area.

But the home side were back in front two minutes. Stanley Aborah stole back possession from Lee Grace before finding Gavan Holohan. He picked out Duffus, who fired through the legs of Rovers keeper Chencinski to make it 2-1.

Rovers created chances early in the second period, and Grace saw his header saved by Vigouroux. Dan Carr was next to threaten but he blasted over from inside the penalty area after a good Sam Bone cross. Ronan Finn shot wide from a good position before Brandon Miele saw his free-kick well saved by Vigouroux.

As much as Rovers pressed, Waterford held firm at the back and defended well to hold on for another valuable three points in front of a capacity 3,010 crowd at the RSC.

WATERFORD: Vigouroux, Kavanagh, Webster, Comerford, Barnett; Hery, Aborah, Holohan, Keegan; O’Halloran (Akinade 53), Duffus (Kasmi 77)

SHAMROCK ROVERS: Chencinski; Boyle, Grace, Gilchrist, Clarke (Byrne 31 (Bone 51)); Finn, Bolger; Coustrain (Lopes 12), Burke, Miele; Carr.

Referee: Paul McLoughlin

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