Limerick claimed their second win of the Allianz Football League Division 4 campaign on Sunday thanks to a 1-13 to 1-7 win over London in the Gaelic Grounds.
A bizarre first half saw the hosts scream into an instant lead, go a man up after four minutes when London centre-forward Lorcan Mulvey gained a straight red for an off-the-ball incident, strike seven excellent points through almost constant pressure and still find themselves level at the break against opponents who hardly launched a serious attempt at the posts during the entire period.
It wasn’t until Ian Ryan found the net ten minutes after the break that the game finally reverted to form and the hosts collected their expected victory.
Limerick were three points up in as many minutes through Ger Collins, James O’Meara and Ian Ryan but lost their direction after London packed back following Mulvey’s dismissal. Two Pádraig McGoldrick frees on their occasional breaks brought the vistors back into contention and Eoin O’Neill sent over a third placed ball after Eoghan O’Connor’s reply.
Home side pressure finally seemed to be paying off when Ryan, O’Connor and Ryan again finished off three patient moves but London resurrected their hopes when McGoldrick slotted home a penalty and O’Neill tapped over a free from the resulting kickout to give them an unlikely tie of 0-7 to 1-4 at the break.
Limerick got a penalty of their own on the restart but Declan Traynor saved off Seánie Buckley. After an O’Meara point, Ryan made up for the missed opportunity when taking a pass from Collins to slip under Traynor. And that was enough to finally settle the tie.
Scorers - Limerick: Ian Ryan 1-6 (0-2 frees), Ger Collins 0-2, James O’Meara 0-2, Eoghan O’Connor 0-2, Graham O’Connell 0-1; London: Pádraig McGoldrick 1-4 (1-0 penalty, 0-4 frees), Eoin O’Neill 0-2 (both frees), Seán McVeigh 0-1.
Limerick - Brian Scanlon; Damien Quaide, Johnny McCarthy, Lorcan O’Dwyer; John Riordan, Barry Fitzpatrick, Pa Ranahan; Seánie Buckley, Stephen Lucey; Darragh Treacy, Eoghan O’Connor, John Cooke; Ger Collins, James O’Meara, Ian Ryan. Subs: Stephen Lavin for Damien Quaide (half-time), Ian Corbett for Darragh Treacy (half-time), Graham O’Connell for John Cooke (59 mins), Stephen Nix for Stephen Lucey (61 mins), Mike O’Keeffe for Lorcan O’Dwyer (67 mins).
London - Declan Traynor; Séamus Hannon, Seán Bradshaw, David McGreevy; Anthony Gaughan, Shane Mulligan, John Scanlon; Seán McVeigh, Mark Gottsche; Ciarán McCallion, Lorcan Mulvey, Michael Mullins; Pádraig McGoldrick, Seán Kelly, Eoin O’Neill. Subs: Paul McDermott for Seán Kelly (44 mins), Shane Doolin for John Scanlon (53 mins), Francis Niblock for Eoin O’Neill (56 Mins), Fergal McVey for Michael Mullins (61 mins), Barry Kerr for Anthony Gaughan (65 mins).
Referee - Keith O’Brien (Tipperary)