Honours even at Páirc Tailteann!
25th November 2019
Meath Cumann na mBunscol Division 1 Boys' Final
St. Paul’s Primary School, Navan 2-03 Dunboyne Senior Primary School 0-09
The footballers of St. Paul’s and Dunboyne will have to do it all over again after a nail-biting final at Páirc Tailteann on Saturday afternoon. Even extra-time could not separate the two teams.
Played in very difficult conditions, both teams displayed tremendous bravery, determination and a dogged refusal to accept defeat. The teams were deadlocked at one point apiece at half-time of normal time, with the St. Paul’s score coming courtesy of a lovely Cormac Fitzsimons effort. At that point, there was very little to choose between the teams, with both defences on top. Some of the tackling, blocking and ball-winning by each member of the St. Paul’s defence was outstanding.
St. Paul’s emerged from half-time with all guns blazing, scoring an excellent team point, finished off by team captain Jack Collier, to lead by 0-02 to 0-01. However, this seemed to stir Dunboyne into a response and the south Meath boys scored three points without reply to open up a 0-04 to 0-02 lead. St. Paul’s were struggling to get out of their own half, but when they did, they always looked dangerous. Two such break-outs led to two goals in quick succession to completely change the complexion of the match. Charlie Carolan displayed superb quick-thinking to ‘header’ the ball into the Dunboyne net. This was followed by a powerful, low drive by Cormac Maguire. St. Paul’s now led 2-02 to 0-04 and Dunboyne were facing an uphill battle. To their enormous credit, they clawed their way back with another purple patch to restore parity, 2-02 to 0-08 at full-time.
If one team was going to succeed in extra-time, it looked like it would be Dunboyne, having finished the game in the ascendancy. Not for the first time this season though, St. Paul’s regrouped and came out firing to gain the lead once more following another well-taken Cormac Fitzsimons point. They held this lead right up to the last minute until Dunboyne won and converted a free to force a replay.
Both teams can be very proud of their efforts on what was not an easy day for free-flowing football.
The teams will reconvene at Páirc Tailteann this Thursday, 28th November, with a throw-in time of 1.30pm.