All-Ireland Final: Kerry and Dublin ends in entertaining 1-16 to 1-16 draw

Kerry 1-16 Dublin 1-16 

Dublin’s drive for five remains in motion after a pulsating 1-16 to 1-16 draw with Kerry in the All-Ireland Final. Dublin will probably be very happy to get another chance of creating history after they played over 45 minutes with just 14 men.

Jim Gavin’s side won the toss and elected to shoot into Hill 16. It wasn’t long before the ball was thrown in and they registered their first score with Paul Mannion splitting the posts. Sean O’Shea then levelled up matters, but Ballymun Kickhams man Dean Rock restored the Dublin lead from a free after Con O’Callaghan was fouled. Kerry then could have and probably should have had a goal at the other end when Paul Geaney was denied by a goal-line clearance from James McCarthy. David Clifford finally got on the scoreboard after two missed previously efforts, he then won a penalty which Johnny Cooper committed. Paul Geaney took the penalty but it was well saved by Cluxton. However, it must be said the Parnell’s man was a good 2 or 3 feet of his line. The penalty probably should have been retaken.

Sean O’Shea kicked the resulting 45 from the penalty which he knocked over effortlessly. A Stephen O’Brien effort then flew over the bar when it looked like it could have been a goal. Paul Mannion and Sean O’Shea then traded scores as Kerry led at the end of the first quarter. Dublin took the lead by the 19th minute though with an excellent team goal which started at the back with Cluxton. The Dublin supremo found Brian Howard with an accurate kick out, before the ball was played to Niall Scully and Ciaran Kilkenny. The ball ended up with the magnificent McCaffrey who gave Shane Ryan simply no chance in the Kerry goal. Dean Rock kicked a 45 and a free as Dublin looked to be moving up the gears and O’Callaghan could have had a Dublin second goal but his effort was well saved by Ryan.

Sean O’Shea knocked over his fourth point after Stephen O’Brien was fouled by John Small. Dean Rock and Sean O’Shea traded scores then before O’Callaghan got his only score of the game with a fine effort. Rock stretched the Dublin lead out to five and they looked to be easing to another title. However, things took a turn. Johnny Cooper was dismissed on a second yellow card after jostling Clifford to the ground. O’Shea kicked the free. It was 1-09 to 0-08 to Dublin at the break.

Jim Gavin speaking after the game:

On the resumption, Sean O’Shea kicked two 45’s to edge Peter Keane’s charges back to 2 points. David Moran was driving Kerry forward and was the catalyst for the inspired Kerry performance. Stephen Cluxton had to be at his best to deny Paul Murphy when he got fingertips to his goal-bound shot which hit the crossbar. Jack McCaffrey then got another score for the Sky Blues this time a fisted effort, but Gavi Crowley raided forward to score his first championship point. Dean Rock and McCaffrey then registered two more white flags as Dublin led by four. Clifford cut the gap back to three to keep the game in the melting pot coming down the home straight.

Peter Keane speaking after the game:

Tom O’Sullivan perhaps was lucky to escape a second yellow card from David Hough for a foul on John Small. Dean Rock was to kick the free and he split the posts. The gap was out to five when McCaffrey pointed on 55 minutes. Paddy Small then had an effort for a point well kept out by Ryan who worked the ball out into the defence. The ball found Killian Spillane in the corner and he raided through to finish an unstoppable effort past Cluxton. Tommy Walsh then made it a one-point game on 59 minutes, before O’Shea tied up the scores on 62 minutes.

Dean Rock kicked a score on 65 minutes only for O’Shea to level the sides for 10th time. Killian Spillane then out Kerry into the lead with an excellent point which sent the Kerry contingent at GAA Headquarters into loud cheers. Hawk-Eye was required then when Cormac Costello’s shot was deemed wide. Into injury time and Jim Gavin brought on Diarmuid Connolly his kick from around the 45-yard line sailed wide. Rock kicked over a score on 74 minutes. He had a chance to win the game then with the last kick of the game from right out on the sideline at the Cusack Stand but it went wide. Both sides live to fight another day which will be in two week’s time.

Dublin – S Cluxton; D Byrne, J Cooper, M Fitzsimons; J McCaffrey (1-3), J McCarthy, J Small; B Fenton, M D Macauley; N Scully, C O’Callaghan (0-1), B Howard; P Mannion (0-2), D Rock (0-10, 6f, 1’45), C Kilkenny. Subs: P Small for M D Macauley, D Connolly for B Howard, C Costello for P Mannion.

Kerry – S Ryan; J Foley, T Morley, T O’Sullivan; P Murphy, G Crowley (0-1), B O Beaglaoich; D Moran, A Spillane; G White, S O’Shea (0-10, 3f, 3’45), S O’Brien (0-1); D Clifford (0-2), P Geaney, J Barry. Subs: K Spillane (1-1) for A Spillane, J Sherwood for G White, T Walsh (0-1) for B O Beaglaoich, J Lyne for G Crowley, D Moynihan for J Barry, M Griffin for S O’Brien.

Referee – D Gough.

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