Tyrone easily brushed aside the challenge of Tyrone in the opening game of the inaugural Super 8’s. They were convincing winners by 18 points, 4-24 to 2-12.
Tyrone will now look forward to a meeting with Dublin next weekend in Omagh knowing a win there would see them through to the semi-finals, on the other side of the table Roscommon will need a win over Donegal or they will more than likely be out of championship 2018. The game itself saw Peter Harte, Niall Sludden,Peter Harte and Richie Donnelly all firing in goals for the winners, while Enda Smith and Diarmuid Murtagh fired in three pointers for the Rossies. Sludden and Fintan Cregg traded the first two scores, before the Murtagh brothers edged the Connacht side ahead by two after 4 minutes of play. Conor McAliskey and Richard Donnelly levelled matters before Diarmuid Murtagh restored the Rossies lead.
Sludden then put Mickey Harte’s side ahead with a superb goal at the Hill 16 end to give Tyrone a lead they wouldn’t relinquish for the remainder of the game as they began to take control of proceedings. Tyrone led by 1-03 to 0-04. Tiernan McCann extended the lead, before The Red Hands lost Cathal McCarron through a knee injury. McAliskey doubled the Tyrone lead on 25 minutes, Tyrone then kicked on with Meyler, McShane and McKiernan all pointing along with Ronan McNamee and Richard Donnelly stretching the gap to seven at the break.
Roscommon made a better start to the second half when Enda Smith banged in a goal on 37 minutes responding to a free from Peter Harte. The Murtagh brother then kicked over a free each, however, these scores were cancelled out by scores from McAliskey and Sludden on 45 minutes. Richard Donnelly had a superb game and he scored his third point, Diarmuid Murtagh then fisted his fifth point of the day. The game was over as a contest when Meyler rolled the ball past Colm Lavin on 49 minutes, the scores were now 2-14 to 1-09. The gap was soon out to 10 with McAliskey and Harte coming to the fore once again. Mark Bradley and Declan McClure made it a 13 point game with good scores.
Ciaran Murtagh got a Roscommon goal out of no where with 60 minutes played. However almost instantly Tyrone were awarded a penalty with Hugh Pat McGeary fouled inside the box. It was left to Peter Harte to convert, and then Richard Donnelly got a quick point to make it 3-20 to 2-09. Conor Devaney got a score in response to Mattie Donnelly and Bradley, before Harte made it a double score game once more. Padraig Kelly kicked over for Roscommon but it was all just consolation scores for them now. Rory Brennan and Conor Daly swapped scores, before man of the match Richard Donnelly got Tyrone’s fourth goal of the game by palming the ball past Colm Lavin. Tyrone now go into the game with Dublin two points on the board and a healthy scoring difference, Mickey Harte will be pleased.