Monaghan see off the challenge of Meath

Monaghan 2-13

Meath 0-8

Ulster champions Monaghan were very impressive as they easily saw off the challenge of Meath in the quarter-finals of the TG4 All-Ireland Ladies Senior Football Championship at Birr on Saturday.

Trailing only after Elaine Duffy’s third-minute free put Meath into an early lead, once Monaghan got going their opponents could not deal with the strong running and swift ball-movement.

Corner-forward Caoimhe Mohan and wing-forward Catriona McConnell both impressed, while veteran full-forward Niamh Kindlon also contributed on the scoreboard, with midfielder Cora Courtney and corner-back Grainne McNally also in excellent form.

Meath, who began the game with a team much-changed from that announced, struggled to get to grips with Monaghan even with Jenny Rispin dropping deep to play as a sweeper, as the lack of an extra forward meant that they could not profit when on the attack.

Two each from Kindlon and McConnell had put Monaghan into a comfortable 0-4 to 0-1 lead by the 13th minute before they struck for a goal, Therese McNally linking well with Aoife McAnespie to finish past Irene Munnelly, who moments early had produced a wonderful save to deny McAnespie’s twin sister Ciara.

Both corner-forwards, Ciara McAnespie and Mohan, continued to threaten, and by half-time the lead was 1-7 to 0-3, though Grainne Nulty was denied a Meath goal by Linda Martin in the final minute of the first half.

By the time six second-half minutes had elapsed, the lead had increased to 13 points, Mohan scoring 1-1, and playing into the breeze, Meath’s task was now much harder.

Substitute Vivienne McCormack did score two good points, but not even the reduction of Monaghan to 14 players after Amanda Casey was yellow-carded could affect the flow o the game, 11 points separating the sides at the end.

Scorers for Monaghan: C Mohan 1-2, N Kindlon (0-4f), C McConnell (0-2f) 0-4 each, T McNally 1-0, A McAnespie, C McAnespie, L McEnaney 0-1 each.

Scorers for Meath: K O’Brien (0-1f), V McCormack 0-2 each, F Mahon (0-1f), E Duffy (0-1f), J Rispin, G Doherty 0-1 each.

MONAGHAN: L Martin; G McNally, S Courtney, C Reilly; A McAnespie, N Fahy, L Connolly; A Casey, C Courtney; T McNally, E McCarron, C McConnell; C McAnespie, N Kindlon, C Mohan.

Subs: L McEnaney for McCarron (42), E McIlroy for Connolly (47), N Mohan for Kindlon (51).

MEATH: I Munnelly; A Murray, L McKeever, O Sheridan; F Mahon, C O’Shaughnessy, K Allen; E Rahill, M Sheridan; E Duffy, K O’Brien, S Bennett; G Doherty, G Nulty, J Rispin.

Subs: V McCormack for Duffy (half-time), B Lynch for Bennett (40), A Carolan for Doherty, Bennett for O’Brien (both 47).

Referee: K Delahunty (Tipperary).

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