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Antrim concede tie as Waterford pile on the points

By Rónán MacLochlainn

Waterford 4-20 Antrim 1-9: Waterford bounced back from their midweek provincial disappointment when comfortably accounting for Antrim in Ashbourne.

However, their victory was marred by an injury suffered to Antrim corner-forward Christy McNaughton, who was forced to leave the pitch in an ambulance, and Antrim then conceded the match with 57 minutes on the clock.

The sides traded scores in the early stages, but Conor Johnson's point in the 10th minute proved Antrim's final score for 20 minutes as the Deise assumed complete control.

Patrick Curran raced in superbly from the right wing before firing past Colin Heyden for the opening goal in the 14th minute.

It was a procession from that juncture, with Curran adding three points from placed balls before the end of the half, while the lively Michael Keaney added a brace of scores to ensure a comfortable 1-11 to 0-4 interval lead for Waterford.

Antrim resumed in determined fashion but their efforts were mere consolation as the Deise added scores through Micheal Harney, Stephen Bennett and the exceptional Austin Gleeson.

Sadly, the contest was prematurely curtailed with 13 minutes left as McNaughton was stretchered off, and referee Justin Heffernan accepted Antrim's concession of the game.

According to the GAA rule-book, an abandoned match must be re-fixed.

However, Waterford officials are adamant that the GAA will confirm on Monday morning that the beaten Munster finalists will be awarded victory in this match.

Waterford: G Power; W Hahessy, K Daly, C Leamy; S O'Neill, A Gleeson (0-4, 0-1f), Shane Bennett; M O'Brien (0-1), M Harney (0-2) ; P O'Connor (0-1), C Curran, DJ Foran (0-2); Stephen Bennett (2-1, 1-0f), P Curran (2-5, 0-2f, 0-2 '65'), M Kearney (0-4). Subs: T Devine for Shane Bennett (40), S Hogan for O'Connor (43), E O'Halloran for Curran (52), MJ Sutton for Harney (55).

Antrim: C Heyden; R Diamond, G Walsh, A Orchin; D O'Hara, M Connolly, P Burke; A Delargy, C Johnson (0-3, 1f); E McFerran, D Nugent (1-2 ,1-1f), C McAlister; C McNaughton (0-2, 2f), J McCurdy (0-1), S McCaughan. Subs: C McDonnell (0-1) for McFerran (33), R McNulty for O'Hara (53), J Connolly for McNaughton (58).

Referee: J Heffernan (Wexford).

Belfast Telegraph


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