IT could have been worse in this Electric Ireland Leinster MHC clash at O’Connor Park on Saturday evening. Much worse.
Leinster MHCRound 2
With Meath putting up stubborn resistance and refusing to lie down, a scrambled goal by Kevin Dunne gave Offaly a six point lead (2-12 to 0-12) in the 52nd minute.
Five scoreless minutes followed before Meath’s top scorer Jack Regan pointed a free and Stefan Kelly added off a point to which Cillian Kiely replied with a long range free.
Then in the first minute of three-minute stoppage time Meath sub Dylan Keenan capitalised on a spilled ball in the square for a Meath goal.
With their tails up, Meath attacked again. Jack Regan fielded and drove a long ball in. Sub Josh Wall won the race for possession with Offaly ‘keeper Conor Clancy, Wall flicking the ball past the advancing custodian only to see his effort go narrowly wide.
It was that close, and had Meath won it would have been entirely merited. Bluntly, Meath were better at the basics of modern hurling. They were good in possession; they always supported the man in possession giving him an option to lay off a pass, they made several fine aerial fetches and they were better on the ground, winning rucks and scrums.
See this week’s Offaly Express (May 8) for full report and photographic coverage