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Dr McKenna Cup: Cavan edge it against old rivals

Monaghan 1-12 Cavan 1-13: Cavan held out for the narrowest of victories over Monaghan that could see them through to the semi-finals of the McKenna Cup — in a game that at one stage they looked like winning comfortably.

Monaghan and Cavan came to Pairc Grattan, Inniskeen last night with different outlooks.

The Farney men were looking for a first victory in this year’s competition while Cavan were seeking their second brace of points that would keep them in contention for a place in the semi-finals as the best runner up.

The Breffni side got off to the better start with early points by Keith Fannin, Michael Brennan, Thomas Corr and Eoin Smith before Monaghan got off the mark in the 10th minute through Ronan Meegan.

Cavan continued to dictate and were awarded a penalty for a foul on Brennan who took the spot kick but Mark Keogh saved.

Cavan went on to lead at half time by 1-9 to 0-4, Brennan getting the goal to make some amends for his fluffed penalty.

In the second half Monaghan were transformed and began to win possession in midfield, whittling Cavan’s lead away with an unanswered goal and five points between the sixth and 19th minutes to level the game for the first time, Gavin Flanagan with the goal in the ninth minute.

Cavan, though, got back in front and managed to hang on.

Monaghan: M Keogh, K Duffy, S Driver, D Connolly, D Mone, O Duffy, P Kieran (0-1), D Clerkin, B McKenna, G Flanagan (1-0), S Smyth, G Boyd, P Finlay (0-8, 4f), C Woods, R Meegan (0-1). Subs: M Downey 0-1 for G Boyd, J Turley (0-1) for C Woods, G Doogan for D Connolly, M McElroy for R Meegan, G Ward for G Flanagan.

Cavan: J Reilly, P Cahill, E Smith (0-1), S Jordan, D O’Dowd, A Clarke, D O’Reilly, T Corr (0-1), P O’Reilly (0-1), K Fannin (0-4), A O’Reilly, R Flanagan (0-1), B Fitzpatrick, M Brennan (1-1), C Mackey (0-4, 2f). Subs: M McKeever for D O’Dowd, R Cullivan for A O’Reilly, C Galligan for T Corr, G Pierson for M Brennan, D Sheridan for E Smith.

Referee: C Brannigan (Down).

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