The early January competitions could once be judged akin to the rule changes which tended to get their airtime in them – experimental. Due to the asinine re-configuration of the playing season however, there is, in reality, little if any wriggle room to trial anything or anybody.
As bad as it is for men’s teams though, it’s even more taxing on lady footballers and camogie players who no warm up competitions and are thus straight into serious competition.
Anyway, though Meath did suffer their first defeat of the season in this Kehoe Cup encounter, there were positives to be gleaned in between the creativity and profligacy which have punctuated the early season action so far for Seoirse Bulfin’s side.
With Ciaran Kavanagh proving highly influential in attack, the Barrowsiders made all the running and when Paddy Boland masterfully flicked past Philip O’Brien in the Meath goal to leave the locals 0-05 to 1-11 up, there appeared to be no way back for those in pursuit.
To their credit though, they kept plugging away and brilliantly taken Stephen Morris goal left just six points between the sides at the break. By no means insurmountable in hurling.
Carlow further embellished their lead immediately after the restart and despite firstly a flurry of points from James Kelly, Podge O’Hanrahan and Damien Healy and then a goal from sub Paddy Barnwell four points was as close as the green and gold could get.
All of which means a must win shoot out against Kildare. Which is why they will be hoping to and will need to improve on the 11 wides chalked up today.
MEATH: P. O’Brien; K. Swaine, A. O’Connor, G. Dwane; P. Kelly, J. Kelly (0-2), S. Geraghty; S. Morris (1-0), P. O’Hanrahan (0-6); D. Healy (0-2), E. O’Donnchadh, J. Leavy (0-1); S. Quigley, M. Cole, N. Potterton. Subs; K. Donnelly (0-1) for Kelly, P. Barnwell (1-0) for Cole, N. McLarnon (0-1) for Geraghty, M. Healy for Morris, S. Brennan for O’Connnor, M. Burke for Swaine, D. Shine for O’Hanrahan.