Tyrone took a step closer to reaching the All-Ireland quarter finals on Saturday when they overcame Meath by 2 points in rainy Healy Park, Omagh.
Like their previous game against Limerick, it took Tyrone a long time to get up and going and if anyone was running 30 minutes late to Saturday’s game, they really wouldn’t have missed much. Meath alone did not record their first score to the 29th minute but they then followed it up with 3 more points in quick succession to leave the Royal men 0-04 to 0-03 up at HT.
The second half was better entertainment however. Tiarnan McCann and Darren McCurry came on for Richard Donnelly and Barry Tierney. McCann’s pace and direct running resulted in him being pulled down inside the square and Peter Harte converting the decisive penalty into the top corner. Mark Bradley and Ronan O’Neill also pointed for Tyrone to allow them to build up a lead but Meath, playing with the breeze, were never far behind. They could have scored a goal towards the end but thankfully the ball went wide and Tyrone secured a 2 point win and a place in Round 3 of the qualifiers next Saturday against Tipperary.
Full time score; Tyrone 1-10 Meath 0-11.
The Meath team pose for the team photo as Tyrone return back to the changing rooms.
Ronan McNabb in action for Tyrone.
Michael McGoldrick removes a pitch invader from the field.
Tyrone progressed to the second round of the All-Ireland qualifiers on Sunday afternoon in Healy Park with a 9 point win over Limerick that never looked in doubt at any stage of the game.
Played in a very pedestrian pace in the first half, Tyrone took an early lead with scores from Connor McAliskey, Mattie Donnelly and Sean Cavanagh but consistent hard work paid off for Limerick when they soon found their scoring boots and reduced the lead to 0-06 to 0-04 at HT, despite losing Cillian Fahy and Darragh Treacey to black cards.
Tyrone stepped up a gear in the second half and Limerick couldn’t find a response to it – fine play from Ronan O’Neill, Peter Harte, Aidan McCrory, Connor McAliskey and Mattie Donnelly resulted in some excellent scores. Limerick came close to scoring a goal but the only goal of the game came from the hand of Peter Harte just before the final whistle to give them a comfortable 9 point win in front of the 5000 strong crowd.
Tyrone will be on the road again very soon with stiffer opposition to compete against but this game went according to the script and that’s all that matters.
Full time score; Tyrone 1-14 Limerick 0-08.
Limerick made the long journey to Omagh on Sunday afternoon.
The Tyrone team line out.
Mickey Harte arrives out onto Healy Park.
Connor McAliskey’s shot goes narrowly wide.
Greencastle recorded their first ever win in the Tyrone SFC when they defeated Eglish by the narrowest of margins in a windy Galbally on Sunday afternoon on a scoreline of 2-09 to 1-11.
Below are photos from the match.
The Eglish team line out for the team photo.
Greencastle’s John Mc Cullagh attacks.
Derrytresk gave one of the shocks of the weekend in the opening round of the Tyrone IFC on Sunday afternoon in Galbally when they recorded a fully deserved 2-07 to 0-09 win over Pomeroy Plunketts.
Below are some photos from the game.
Frank Burns shoots for a point for Pomeroy.
On Sunday, in Ulster’s opening round of the Senior Football Championship, Tyrone travelled to Ballybofey again to face old foes Donegal in an action packed game played with total conviction from both sides.
Tyrone made a few late changes before the throw in with U21 players Cathal McShane and Rory Brennan making their senior debuts following their success in Parnell Park 2 weeks ago. But it was Rory Gallagher’s side that made the better start, scoring 4 unanswered points in the opening 7 minutes. A well taken Darren McCurry goal though in the eighth minute though gave hope for Tyrone’s large travelling support and it was game on from there on in! Justin McMahon, Ronan McNamee, Sean Cavanagh and Mattie Donnelly all scored for Tyrone then to put them ahead 1-06 to 0-07 with HT approaching. However, loose marking in the Tyrone defence allowed Donegal’s Martin McElhinney to volley the ball into the net for Donegal’s only goal of the game.
After a bit of a handbag affair at the end of the half, the second half resumed and Tyrone continued to battle forward and cause the Donegal defence problems. Connor McAliskey scored 3 points from play to level the game 1-10 each in the 51st minute but that was to be Tyrone’s last score of the day. Michael Murphy struck a couple of huge frees for Donegal to give them a 3 point lead before Sean Cavanagh and Neil Gallagher got their marching orders. Tyrone tried to strike it lucky with a late goal but it never came and it was Rory Gallagher’s side who made it 5 championship wins for Donegal in the last 5 meetings with Mickey Harte’s side.
Full time score; Donegal 1-13 Tyrone 1-10
It’s back to the road for Tyrone now in a few weeks time, hopefully they can carry on the momentum and energy from this game to the first round of All-Ireland qualifiers.
Mickey Harte made a welcome reappearance back to his managerial duties.
Richard Donnelly was a late inclusion into the Tyrone senior team this year.
Mickey O’Neill wore the No.1 jersey for his senior championship debut.
Darren McCurry puts the ball into the Donegal net.
The Tyrone minor team gave a valiant performance against a strong young Donegal side in Sunday’s curtain raiser in Ballybofey.
For the opening 35 minutes, Mickey Donnelly’s side were the better side and they gave the home side plenty to worry about. Despite conceding an early goal to Donegal’s Conor Doherty, Tyrone’s Fintan McClure and Conan McLernon responded with scores to level the game at HT as conditions in Ballybofey worsened. Unfortunately, that is where the Tyrone scores ended as Declan Bonner’s side held them scoreless in the second half, often defending and attacking in numbers which Tyrone couldn’t compete with.
Donegal were deserved winners on the day and they look like a side who could lift the Ulster title in 2 months time. Hard luck to the Tyrone minors, a side that will no doubt return stronger in 2016.
Full time score; Donegal 1-11 Tyrone 0-08.
The Tyrone minor team line out in Ballybofey.
Former Tyrone senior player Brian McGuigan.
Ricey McMenamin pictured before the game.
Tyrone U21’s achieved one of the most important feats of the past 7 years for the county when they lifted the Clarke Cup over a determined and hungry Tipperary side in Parnell Park, Dublin on Saturday night.
It has been widely publicised how the Tyrone U21 side has under-performed in Ulster over the last number of years and this All-Ireland success will certainly be a massive boast to the county’s morale as a whole, especially 2 weeks before the senior’s opening championship fixture against Donegal.
Played in cold and wet conditions on Saturday night, it was Tipperary who started the strongest while in the other end of the field Tyrone’s wide count was starting to accumulate. Mark Bradley and Michael Cassidy scored the first couple of points for Fergal Logan’s side and Danny McNulty added with a free before the break but it was the Munster champions who proved to be the better team in the first half going in 0-07 to 0-05 up at HT.
Two serious medical incidents in the crowd during the break caused the game to be delayed for at least 50 minutes before play could be resumed again. This extended break in play perhaps worked to Tyrone’s advantage as they regrouped and refocused and came out stronger. Ruairi McGlone’s inclusion into the forward line created a much more direct and attacking approach to Tyrone’s play allowing Lee Brennan to score the subsequent free kicks to level the game 0-08 apiece. The all important score came soon after when Mark Kavanagh’s ball found Cathal McShane who coolly converted the ball into the back of the net for the decisive goal. This time it was Tipperary who were guilty of missing some easy scoring chances but despite cutting the margin down to one point, they couldn’t find that equaliser in a nail biting 4 minutes of added time.
Despite the sending off of Michael Cassidy during added time, Fergal Logan, Brian Dooher and Peter Canavan’s side held on for the historic win. Well done to them!
Full time score; Tyrone 1-11 Tipperary 0-13.
View over 80 of my photos below.
The 2015 U21 All-Ireland champions!
Tyrone captain Kieran McGeary lifts the Clarke Cup.
Tyrone U21 manager Fergal Logan.
Lee Brennan looks for options
A couple of weeks ago now (I’m a bit behind in updating my blog here), Tyrone took on Kerry in the final league game of the year in Healy Park, Omagh – it was a must win game for Mickey Harte’s team but in a rare occurrence, Mickey wasn’t at this game due to recovering from a minor medical procedure.
Tony Donnelly took over the reins with Gavin Devlin for the Easter Sunday game but unfortunately even though Tyrone threw everything bar the kitchen sink into the game, they could only pull off a draw which wasn’t enough and means they will be playing Division 2 football in 2016.
Full time score; Tyrone 0-17 Kerry 1-14.
Below are my pics from the match.
The Tyrone senior team.
The Kerry senior team pictured in Omagh.
Sean Cavanagh and Kieran Donaghy with referee Joe McQuillan.
Tyrone senior hurlers finished off a brilliant league campaign in 2015 by winning the Division 3A title, beating neighbours Monaghan in a close game in Keady on Saturday.
Mattie Lennon’s side first played Monaghan back in February, a contest which ended in a draw, and this game could have went either way too. Tyrone were slow to get started in the game and their first point didn’t come until the 11th minute. But they soon found their feet and further scores followed. Damien Casey did miss a first half penalty but the Dungannon Eoghan Ruadh man converted plenty of long range points to allow them go in at the break ahead.
Tyrone pulled further ahead in the second half with scores from Mark Winters, Justin Kelly and more from Casey to seal the result for Mattie Lennon and Dave Kennedy’s players…… a fantastic result for our hurlers. bringing home silverware for the second year in a row.
Full time score; Tyrone 0-18 Monaghan 1-11
Below are my photos from the game.
Tyrone hurling captain Damien Casey.
The Tyrone team line out in Keady.
The Monaghan senior hurling team.
Tyrone senior hurlers staged a fantastic comeback in Healy Park, Omagh against an unbeaten Roscommon side on Sunday to set up a Division 3 final against Monaghan.
Played in sunny conditions, Roscommon hit a fortunate early goal but Tyrone struck back with a goal of their own through Sean Og Grogan. Both sides swapped points in the first half with Tyrone scores coming from Chris Cross, Damien Casey and Conor Grogan but it was Roscommon who finished the half strongest going in at the break 1-07 to 1-06 ahead.
The second half continued the same as the first with both sides battling for every ball providing plenty of drama and entertainment. Roscommon looked to have the edge over Mattie Lennon’s side after 20 minutes going ahead 4 points but the tide began to turn for the home side and more refereeing decisions went Tyrone’s way. Damien Casey added more points to his personal tally of 0-10 and in the closing minutes of the game he scored the winning point with another well place free to set up a league final encounter with Monaghan in 2 weeks time.
Full time score; Tyrone 1-14 Roscommon 1-13
The Tyrone team warm up in glorious conditions in Healy Park.
The Tyrone senior hurling team.
Tyrone hurling manager Mattie Lennon.