Christy Ring Cup QF - Sligo 2-18 v Roscommon 1-20

Back 18/07/2021 @ 09:09 | mainnews | Christy Ring Cup QF - Sligo 2-18 v Roscommon 1-20

No report of this game will do it justice for the tension, excitement, unbridled joy and relief from a Sligo perspective. The full gamut of emotions were experienced by all. At the end Sligo had their first win in the Christy Ring cup and had avoided relegation from the grade also. It also was a victory over neighbours Roscommon who put us out of the competition last year in a week Sligo also defeated them in the U20 quarter final. The reward in both codes is All Ireland semi finals versus Derry.

After a minutes silence was observed for Brendan Óg Duffy of Monaghan, Roscommon were off to a flyer with a point from play in the first minute but young Thomas Cawley who was in scintillating form in the first half responded and was quickly joined in the scoring stakes by his brother and vice captain Finnian with a point from play. Cathal Dolan for Ros put them back in front but Gavin Connolly drove out from defence to score a long range effort followed by Sligo taking the lead for the first time n the 11th minute from Gerard O’Kelly Lynch. Roscommon though responded emphatically with 4 points on the bounce with scores from Dolan (2) and Cathal Kenny and Conor Mulry (2). Thomas Cawley got 2 points from play before the break.

Mark Hanniffy who was added to the team before the start got his first score of the day in the 19th minute followed by Joe McHugh. Dolan and Kenny kept Roscommon in front but then Andy Kilcullen got a good score on the run and was unlucky soon after when his goalbound effort was blocked after which he scored his second of the half. Conor Hanniffy who was a constant target for Stephen Fleming puckouts caught another one and turned and put it between the posts. Roscommon went back in front before the break with Dolan scoring from play(2) and a free along with midfielder Ben McGahon. Gerard O’Kelly Lynch replied with two scores before the break leaving the minimum between the sides at 0-14 v 0-15.

From the throw in the sides were level again with Andy Kilcullen driving over from the centre. Kilcullen was to be a significant outlet for puckouts in the second period normally in front of the Sligo dugout. Oisín Kelly though got what looked like for a large part of the second half the significant score with a low drive into the corner of the net in the town goals. Cathal Kenny pushed the lead out to 4 soon after. Finnian Cawley and Gerard O responded. In the next 10 minutes where it was quite disjointed as the tension ratcheted the only score was a Dolan free. Mark Hanniffy brought Sligo back level with a goal that brought the sides back level but the joy for Sligo was cut short as the referee was alerted to an incident at the other end of the field and after consultation with all his officials Dolan received a yellow but James Weir received a straight red and the water break then called.

The last quarter of the game saw only 1-4 scored between the sides with 1-3 of that in injury time. In the 25th minute Roscommon went 1 up and it took 11 minutes for Gerard O to equalise after Kevin O’Kennedy was third man tackled. Roscommon though went on the offensive and their numerical advantage appeared to be making a difference as the sun baked Hyde Park was taking its toll on tired Sligo limbs. Two scores from Roscommon substitutes looked to have settled the game going into the final minute of injury time. Sligo won a free on their own 45, as the Roscommon goalmouth was being filled with players it was taken short to Gerard O’Kelly Lynch who from the Roscommon 45m line let fly at crossbar height into the cemetery end goals, on the left hand post. Three hurls went into the air but Mark Hanniffy got the significant touch to divert the ball into the bottom right side netting of the goal to send the large Sligo crowd and panel into raptures. The puckout was allowed but a line ball to Sligo was the final act of this game. The joy on the faces of players, families and supporters at the end was a sight to behold.



Sligo – Mark Hanniffy 2-1, Gerard O’Kelly-Lynch 0-6 (5f), Thomas Cawley, Andy Kilcullen 0-3each, Finnian Cawley 0-2, Gavin Connolly, Conor Hanniffy, Joe McHugh 0-1 each

Sligo : - Stephen Fleming, James Weir, Niall Feehily, Niall Kilcullen, Kevin Banks, Rory McHugh, Gavin Connolly, Mark Hanniffy, Tony O’Kelly-Lynch, Conor Hanniffy, Joe McHugh, Finnian Cawley, Thomas Cawley, Gerard O’Kelly-Lynch, Andy Kilcullen

Subs – Kevin O’Kennedy for Tony O’Kelly-Lynch, Michael Munnelly for Thomas Cawley, Kieran Prior for Joe McHugh



Sligo – Gerard O’Kelly Lynch 1-11 (10f), Joe McHugh, Kevin Banks 0-3 each, Finnian Cawley 0-1

Tyrone – Damian Casey 0-7 (4f, 2x65), Tiernan Morgan 0-3, Cain Ferguson 0-2, Conor Grogan 0-1


Sligo – Stephen Fleming, James Weir, Niall Feehily, Niall Kilcullen, Kevin Banks, Rory McHugh, Gavin Connolly, Kevin O’Kennedy, Tony O’Kelly Lynch, Conor Hanniffy, Joe McHugh, Finnian Cawley, Tomás Cawley, Gerard O’Kelly Lynch, Andy Kilcullen

Subs: Mark Hanniffy for O’Kennedy, Michael Munnelly for Andy Killcullen, Kieran Prior for Tony O’Kelly Lynch, Fionn Moylan for Tomás Cawley