Paddy O’Brien Park held off the Storm Jorge to stage the Division 1 opener between Navan O’Mahony’s and Gaeil Colmcille in what was a repeat of the 2019 decider.
The hosts got off to the perfect start after just two minutes when a high ball into the Full-Forward line was flick in to the back of the net. Gaeil Colmcille responded well and levelled the game up by the fourth minute after two fine efforts from Cormac Mattimoe and a point from elder brother Seamus.
Both sides traded scores with O’Mahony’s going in front before Seamus Mattimoe hit the equalizing score one minute later. Kells took the lead for the first time when wing forward Oisin Reilly pointed for The Gaeils in a frantic opening 10 minutes.
The sides were level once more before a Danny McGovern brace saw Kells take a two point lead midway through the half. O’Mahony’s were back on level terms by the 18th minute in what was the growing trend of the game.
With the elements of Jorge in their favour Gaeil Colmcille closed out the half the stronger and points from James Reilly, two from Seamus Mattimoe and an advanced mark from Oisin Reilly saw Kells take a three point lead at the break 0-11 to 1-05
The second half didn’t live up to the standard of the first and scores were hard to come by and in a tactical half where both teams only managed to score three points between them it was the points from Conal Courtney and a wonderful score from midfielder Liam Ferguson with the outside of his right boot made sure the two points travelled back to Kells. The Kells backs stood the test of the O’Mahony’s forwards with Adam Donnelly at wing back impressing on his Adult A-League debut for the club.
Gaeil Colmcille: J Carry-Lynch, A Muldoon, P Tormay, J Muldoon, A Donnelly, S Curran, A Browne, C Courtney (0-01), L Ferguson (0-01), O Reilly (0-02), F Ferguson, J Reilly (0-01), S Mattimoe (0-04), D McGovern (0-02), C Mattimoe (0-02)
Subs: B Hanlon for C Mattimoe, S Reddy for McGovern
Photo © Declan Lynch