Allianz Hurling League Division IA: Kilkenny 5-16 Dublin 6-12
Kilkenny retained their unbeaten start to 2012, thanks to late goals from Richie Hogan, Richie Power and Matthew Ruth, just edging out a Dublin team which had led for the most of this extraordinary duel.
The result was hard to believe as Dublin, who led by 3-9 to 1-8 at half-time, had clung to their lead for so long after the 44th minute dismissal of Ryan O’Dwyer for a second yellow card offence and looked like registering their first League win of 2012 when ahead by 6-12 to 3-16 with two minutes left on the clock However, Richie Power hit Kilkenny’s fourth goal to reduce the difference to two points and then Matthew Ruth broke Dublin hearts when he struck the winning score.
Dublin started well and Paul Ryan knocked over the opening two points, the first a free , before Eoin Larkin opened Kilkenny’s account.
Paul Ryan scored Dublin’s first goal adding to a high ball to finish past goalkeeper David Herity, giving the 2011 League champions a 1-2 to 0-1 lead. Richie Power converted a Kilkenny free after a foul on Eoin Larkin.
Paul Ryan pointed another free before departing injured to be replaced by Alan Mc Crabbe..Aidan Fogarty and Richie Hogan struck two points for the Cats. Dublin then hit four successive points which included an excellent effort from Danny Sutcliffe and two points from Alan McCrabbe .
Richie Power hit two points in reply for Kilkenny, but Dublin were playing the better hurling and Danny Sutcliffe finished a 26th-minute goal past David Herity to give the Dub’s a 2-7 to 0-6 lead. Sutcliff the added another point before Kilkenny replied with a 30th-minute goal from Aidan Fogarty. It seemed Kilkenny had finally found some form when Larkin and Power (2) pointed soon after, to reducing the deficit to 2-8 to 1-9, but back came Dublin again right on half time when Conor McCormack was first to a breaking ball on a breaking ball and drilled home his side’s third goal to leave the half time score 3-8 to 1-9.
Play had barely resumed after the interval when David ‘Dotsy’ O’Callaghan added a fourth Dublin goal to extend the advantage and Kilkenny looked in serious trouble.
However when Ryan O’Dwyer, received a second yellow card for a foul on Richie Power, it gave Kilkenny a window of opportunity. Points flowed from Eoin Larkin, Richie Power, Richie Hogan and TJ Reid and suddenly the gap was down to five points, 4-10 to 1-14.
However with 54 minutes gone, Danny Sutcliffe struck again to goal and bring his totalfor the game to 2-3.Moments later, Colin Fennelly goaled at other end and the game was being played at incredible pace. Liam Rushe and Simon Lambert pointed to steady Dublin and Anthony Daly’s side seemed to have done enough to win with a seven-point lead and just ten minutes remaining on the clock. But the game was to take a couple of twists yet.
First Richie Hogan struck an outstanding goal for Kilkenny but Dublin substitute Eamon Dillon goaled at the other end just a minute later.
At 6-12 to 3-15, it seemed Dublin would hang on for a first League win of 2012 .It seemed they would survive even after a Richie Hogan point and a fourth Kilkenny goal from Richie Power. But then Kilkenny substitute Matthew Ruth smashed home an injury-time winner to leave Dublin disconsolate.
Scorers: Kilkenny: R. Power 1-8 (0-5frees, 0-1 ’65’), R. Hogan 1-3, A. Fogarty 1-1, E. Larkin 0-3, C. Fennelly, M. Ruth 1-0 each, T.J. Reid 0-1
Dublin: D. Sutcliffe 2-3, P. Ryan 1-3 (0-2frees), A McCrabbe 0-04 (0-3frees), C. McCormack, D. O’Callaghan, E Dillon 1-0 each, L. Rushe, M. O’Brien 0-1 each
KILKENNY: D. Herity; P. Murphy, J.J. Delaney, N. Hickey; T. Walsh, B. Hogan, R. Doyle; M. Fennelly, M. Rice; T.J. Reid, R. Power, C. Fennelly; R. Hogan, E. Larkin, A. Fogarty.
Subs: M. Ruth for A. Fogarty (53 m), J. Tyrrell for J.J. Delaney (57m), J. Mulhall for C. Fennelly (60m).
DUBLIN: A. Nolan; N. Corcoran, P. Schutte, R. Trainor; M. Carton, J. Boland, J. McCaffrey; S. Durkin, S. Lambert; C. McCormack, R. O’Dwyer, D. Sutcliffe; D. O’Callaghan, L. Rushe, P. Ryan.
Subs: A. McCrabbe for P.Ryan (14 m), E. Dillon for D.O’Callaghan (48m), M O’Brien for S.Durkin (48m), D. Treacy for S.Lambert (66m), S. Stapleton for C.McCormack (68m).
Referee: Barry Kelly (Westmeath)