GAA Football All-Ireland Senior Championship Qualifiers Round 1 – Wicklow 1-17 Waterford 0-15

GAA Football All-Ireland Qualifiers Round 1: Wicklow 1-17 Waterford 0-15

Report from the GAA.ie web site

Wicklow defeated Waterford after extra-time in Aughrim on Saturday, to progress to Round 2 of the GAA Football All-Ireland Qualifiers. Alan Byrne’s point with the last kick of the game in normal time rescued Wicklow, and they overpowered 14-man Waterford in extra-time to progress. Points from Seánie Furlong, Joey Kelly, and Conor McGraynor all proved crucial in the extra period, as Harry Murphy’s men made up for a poor display in normal time with a strong showing in the extra 20 minutes. Waterford led 0-7 to 0-4 at the break, despite having had a man sent off in the opening 35 minutes.

Gary Hurney was dismissed for the Déise with 10 minutes of the first half left to play, but aided by a strong breeze, the visitors stayed in front. They had gone 0-3 to 0-1 up in the first few minutes, Hurney and Seán Dempsey their early scorers. Wicklow edged back into it, and trailed by one after 19 minutes following frees from Tony Hannon and Seánie Furlong. However, the breeze was particularly influential, and despite the sending off of Hurney, Waterford kicked three of the last four scores in the first half, Paul Whyte and Dempsey helping to establish the three-point half-time buffer.

Wicklow came out flying in the second half, and as well as being fired up, they also had wind advantage and soon made it count on the scoreboard. Points from Dean Healy, McGrath and McGraynor made it seven points apiece and then, with just four minutes of the second half gone, McGraynor completed a dramatic turnaround by finishing low to the net. That put Wicklow three up and seemingly headed for victory, but Waterford showed great resolve to fight back, and when JJ Hutchinson put the ball over on 50 minutes, the sides were level at 1-7 to 0-10.

Waterford then had the better of the last 20 minutes of normal time, and although the score exchanged hands a few times in that period, Paul Whyte’s point for Waterford with seven minutes to go looked like it would give them the win. But just when it seemed as though Wicklow wouldn’t break them down and would exit the championship, Byrne managed to get the ball over the bar and force the extra period. Once that had happened, it was probably inevitable that Wicklow would go on to win in extra-time, given the hammer blow to Waterford’s spirit that the equaliser was, and the difficulty of playing with 14 men. And sure enough, Wicklow found it much easier to score in extra-time, and a brilliant point from McGraynor put four between them early in the second half of the extra period. Further scores followed from Niall Gaffney and James Stafford, and Wicklow ended the game in total control, and as deserving winners.

Team News

The Waterford Senior Football team to play Wicklow is as follows –

1. Stephen Enright Ballinacourty

2. Maurice O’Gorman Nire

3. Thomas O’Gorman Nire

4. Kieran Connery Clashmore/Kinsalebeg

5. Tony Grey Stradbally

6. Shane Briggs Ballinacourty

7. Wayne Hennessy Ardmore

8. Sean Dempsey Colligan Emmets

9. Patrick Hurney Ballinacourty

10. Liam Ó Lonáin An Rinn

11. Paul Whyte Kilrossanty

12. Cillian O’Keeffe Clashmore/Kinsalebeg

13. Mark Ferncombe Ballinacourty

14. Gary Hurney Ballinacourty (Captain)

15. J.J. Hutchinson Gaultier

Match Preview

WICKLOW v WATERFORD, Aughrim (Saturday, 14.30)

Championship 2012

Meath 0-16 Wicklow 0-11

Limerick 2-12 Waterford 0-7

They meet for the first time in the championship but have already met this year in Division 4 of the Allianz Football League with Waterford winning by 4-7 to 1-12 in Aughrim on March 4. Three first half goals from Mark Ferncombe set Waterford on their way to a 3-6 to 0-5 lead and while Wicklow battled back in the second half, they had left themselves with too much to do.

Qualifiers 2011

Wicklow 1-18 Sligo 0-16; Wicklow 2-13 Armagh 0-19 (after extra-time)

Armagh 2-9 Wicklow 0-10 (replay) (Round 2)

Waterford 1-17 London 0-13; Limerick 0-14 Waterford 0-9 (Round 3)