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28/10/2021

Line up decided for knock-out stages of Offaly Junior Football Championship

Knockout line-up decided in Offaly JFC

Morgan Tynan got a goal for Ballinagar in their defeat by Rhode in the JFC.

THE knockout line-up was finalised in the Offaly Junior Football Championship on Saturday afternoon.

As expected, Tullamore and Doon went straight through to the semi-finals after the final round of group fixtures was played.

They topped groups 1 and 2 with full points after winning their three games. Rhode finished runners up in group 1 and they will face the third placed team in group 2, An Tulach Mhor in a quarter-final. The second team in group 2 Edenderry play the third team in group 1, Ballinagar in the other quarter-final.

Results went more or less as predicted in the final round. In group 1 Tullamore continued their good form with a comprehensive 5-16 to 1-12 win over Clara – Clara were already out of contention for a quarter-final berth after losing to Rhode and Ballinagar.

Rhode had a 2-14 to 1-13 win over Ballinagar in the other group one fixture. Rhode took control just after midway through the first half with two goals in a minute – the first from a penalty and the second almost immediately when the Ballinagar kickout didn't hit its target. Those goals gave Rhode 2-4 to 0-4 lead and ultimately enough of a cushion to get home.

Ballinagar fought hard to get back into contention in the second half and a superb goal from county U-20 star Morgan Tynan brought the gap back to two points before Rhode steadied the ship and squeezed home. It was a close enough run thing but ultimately Rhode deserved their win as they played with greater pace and made fewer mistakes than their opponents.

While both sides were through, the win was important as they would have preferred a quarter-final against An Tulach Mhor, Tullamore's second side, instead of Edenderry.

Doon continued their good form with a hard earned 1-8 to 0-8 win over An Tulach Mhor while Kilclonfert's aspirations ended with a 1-13 to 0-11 defeat by Edenderry. Kilclonfert have slipped in the past year plus and they had a chance of progressing but had to win and failed to do this against a decent Edenderry side.

The quarter-finals are likely to take place on the weekend of October 2/3. The semi-finals will be by open draw but with the two group winners kept apart.

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