North London Shamrocks 2-13
Neasden Gaels 0-9
NORTH London Shamrocks enjoyed their first ever win in the Danny Sullivan London SFC when defeating Neasden Gaels in Greenford.
With both teams suffering reverses in their opening fixtures it was perhaps understandable that the game got off to a tentative start. Once the initial nerves had passed, it was Shamrocks, who eased into an early lead aided in particular by the strong running of both Ciaran Green and Brian Feeney.
Neasden Gaels kept themselves in the tie thanks primarily to the accurate free taking of Steven Lynch. With Neasden boasting a strong midfield, North London Shamrocks decided to adopt a short kick out policy.
It was a tactic that worked well for them as they mounted several attacks from deep. Before long, Neasden had pushed up to deny space and forced a number of turnovers in dangerous positions. By half time, the scores were level at 0-8 each.
Buoyed by their strong ending to the first half, Neasden came out confident in the second. With their midfield partnership of Paul Geraghty and Steven Doran beginning to click, they began winning much of the breaking ball. Much to Neasden's annoyance, they couldn't turn their possession into points as they squandered good chances and racked up the wides. With 10 minutes played in the second half North London Shamrocks were forced into a change as Ciaran Green suffered a knock.
But Shamrocks continued to battle becoming increasingly confident of winning breaking ball. Suddenly Shamrocks' forwards came to life as Vinny Murphy netted a goal and Ryan Burke in particularly impressive form. Having just finished off a fine team goal, the corner forward will have been disappointed to have been sent off for two yellow card offences.
A man down Shamrocks were still able to split the posts twice more before the final whistle. It will be remembered as their first win in Senior Championship football, but if they continue with their current progress, North London Shamrocks will not have to wait long for the next one.
Scorers for North London Shamrocks: V Murphy 1-5, R Burke 1-1, O Jennings 0-2, P Healey 0-2, B Feeney 0-2, P Hara 0-1 (1 f).
Scorers for Neasden Gaels: S Lynch 0-4 (4 fs), S Doran 0-3, D Carty 0-1, D Crawford 0-1.
North London Shamrocks: D McNulty; B Galvin, D Meehan, C Burke; M McAdam, G Carr, C Green; B Feeney, E McHay; P Healey, R Burke, O Jennings; V Murphy, P Hara, N Costello. Subs: Gould for Green (40 mins).
Neasden Gaels: N O'Connor, K Gerraghty, M Cunningham, B McDonagh; A McMunn, A Flanagan, C Flanagan; P Geraghty, S Doran; J Rafferty, D Carty, D McDonagh; D Crawford, S Lynch, B O'Regan.
Referee: H Bartlett.