A goal in each half from Clann Na nGaeil’s Ben Corkery made the difference as Meath got their Leinster MFC campaign off to a winning start in Kinnegad tonight.
It was the home side, however, who settled better, pointing within seconds of the throw in. In what was a forerunner for what was to come for the remainder of the contest, the Lake County followed it up with a succession of wides.
By contrast, Meath quickly settled in a pattern of moving the ball quickly up the field as the excellent Cian Commins split the posts.
Moments later, the elusive Corkery dropped more dummies than a fella delivering to the Wax Museum after collecting a long ball from Skryne’s Billy Smyth and drilled low to the net.
Bective’s David Donnelly then drove over a mighty left footed effort from way out the field, and, despite the locals enjoying the majority of possession in that first half, their profligacy ensured Corkery’s ‘major’ ensured Meath turned around with a three point buffer, 1-03 to 0-03.
Again, the maroon and white dominated the ball in the early stages of the second half. But their squandering meant they once more only managed one score.
While they did stay with Stephen Morgan’s side for a while, once Meath captain Eamon Armstrong and – in particular – the introduced Michael McIvor began to hoover up ball around midfield, the contest was ended pretty quickly.
Corkery’s second three-pointer, constructed after a brilliant surge by McIvor, left the scoreboard reading 2-07 to 0-09. That finally shook off what was a very spirited Westmeath challenge before firstly Commins lofted over a mighty effort and then Dunboyne’s John Harkin punctuated a fine contribution off the bench by accounting for the final two scores of an entertaining game.
MEATH – Brayden Colfer Slane; Oliver Maloney Walterstown, Thomas Sheridan Oldcastle, Cormac Liggan Dunderry; Oisin O’Neill Dunderry, John Gormley Gaeil Colmcille, Paddy White Ratoath; Eamon Amstrong Duleek/Bellewstown, Capt., Oisin Yore Carnaross; Cian Duggan St Peters Dunboyne, Cian Commins Seneschalstown 0-3, David Donnelly Bective 0-1; Pat Crawley Oldcastle 0-1, Billy Smyth Skryne 0-1, Ben Corkery Clann Na nGael 2-1.
SUBS – Michael McIvor St Vincent’s for Duggan, Naoise Maguire St Colmcille’s for White, John Harkin St Peter’s Dunboyne, 0-3 for Smyth, Andrew Gormley Gaeil Colmcille for Crawley, Manny Magno Summerhill for Commins.
Referee – Kevin Williamson (Offaly)