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O'Doherty begins dramatic finale to seal last-four date

By Kevin Kelly

Derry made it through to the last four of the Christy Ring Cup in the most dramatic fashion when they overcame Ulster neighbours Down at Maghera.

With a minute to go Cormac O'Doherty sent a '65' all the way to the net and when Alan Grant tagged on a point it finished 1-29 to 2-19. That late goal meant that Derry take their place in the semi-final on score difference.

The home side started brightly with a number of O'Doherty points as well as a long range free from keeper Michael Kirkpatrick. A Daithi Sands goal though brought Down back into contention with Rian Brannigan adding a point.

O'Doherty hit another few points but a second Sands goal had the visitors in front. Derry had Cormac McKenna sent off but Cian Waldron, Grant and Meehaul McGrath had Derry points before that late finale.

Armagh will be competing in the Nicky Rackard Cup next season following a heavy defeat at the hands of London in the Athletic Grounds.The home side didn't help their cause having both Dylan McKenna and Ciaran Clifford sent off and while London finished with 13 men after Fergal Collins and Kevin O'Loughlin were dismissed, the outcome had been decided by then.

Shane Lawless, Collins, Henry Vaughan and Troy got goals for London with Ciaran Nelson, Sheehan, Mark Dwyer and Ciaran Burke adding a number of points as it finished 4-27 to 0-11, McAnallen top scoring for the Armagh men with five points which all came from frees.

Tyrone, meanwhile, are through to the Nicky Rackard semi finals after being Leitrim 2-25 to 2-14. Damian Casey top scored for the Red Hands with 1-5 to his name, Aidan Kelly got 1-2 with Pierce O'Kelly, Justin Kelly and Tiarnan Morgan among their points.

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