Ballyboden St Enda’s… 2-08   St Vincent’s…………….. 0-10

Report by Shane O’Brien

Ballyboden St Enda’s claimed their third ever Dublin Senior Football Championship following a magnificent win over reigning champions St Vincent’s in Parnell Park on Sunday. A quick fire start in either half, coupled with a brilliant defensive effort, was enough to keep the Marino outfit at arm’s length for the duration of Sunday’s final. Andrew Kerin’s brace of goals ultimately proved to be the difference in a low scoring affair. It was Kerin who got Boden off the mark as he converted an easy free that had been won following some excellent pressure on the Vincent’s full back line. The Basquel brothers then took centre stage. Ryan Basquel doubled the lead almost instantly, spinning away from his man beautifully before sending the ball high up into air and over the bar. Colm Basquel then got himself in on the act, turning Vinnies’ corner back Hugh Gill inside out before curling over a nice score. Not to be outdone, Ryan curled over a fine left footed effort to extend Boden’s lead even further. Wing back Darren O’Reilly kicked a great point following an excellent hand passing move before Boden grabbed their first three pointer in scrappy and slightly fortuitous circumstances. Kerin’s attempt at a point was high and dropping short, but when Vincent’s ‘keeper Michael Savage showed hesitancy all hell broke loose. Showing a true poacher’s instinct, Colm Basquel found himself on the ball amidst the confusion and unselfishly squared to Kerin who palmed into the empty net. Boden were in dreamland. Not in the wildest dreams of the most optimistic supporter could they have hoped to be eight points ahead of the back-to-back Dublin champions inside 15 minutes. Furthermore, they had kept one of the most deadly attacks in club football scoreless, which is a testament to Boden’s defensive organisation.

Even the mercurial Diarmuid Connolly, who had single handedly taken Boden apart in last year’s championship, was unable to find a way through Boden’s defence. Having said that, he kicked three uncharacteristic wides that he would usually gobble up, which further underlined the feeling that this was to be Boden’s day. Vincent’s did finally get themselves on the scoreboard after 23 minutes of play when Dublin under 21 star Gavin Burke pointed. However, Boden quickly replied through Aran Waters who kicked a great score off his left following a marauding run down the right wing. A Mossy Quinn free and a well taken Ruairí Trainor score brought Vincent’s back to within two goals, but it was Boden who had the final say of the first half. After a brilliant surging run from the excellent Darragh Nelson, the ball found its way to Ryan Basquel, who kicked one of the scores of the day as he curled over a sensational left footed effort from near the left touchline. Boden had completely dominated every facet of the opening period of the game as manager Andy McEntee showed his tactical nous. Their defence squeezed the life out of the Vincent’s forwards who were reduced to taking ambitious shots from distance. Bob Dwan in particular was excellent as he proved himself more than capable of dealing with the considerable threat of Connolly. The midfield of Michael Darragh Macauley and Declan O’Mahoney dominated the air and won the majority of ball that came their way. The forwards were ruthless and took any chances that came their way, clocking up just the one wide.

The second half was barely three minutes old when Boden scored their second goal from the penalty spot. Conal Keaney latched onto an incisive pass from Macauley and was pulled to the ground as he bore down on goal. Kerin stepped up and expertly dispatched the penalty to the bottom left corner. Boden’s lead was now ten points and was seemingly unassailable. However, aside from a 37th minute point from Conal Keaney, Boden would not score again. Within a minute of Keaney’s point, they would lose Ryan Basquel through injury after he took a heavy blow from Joe Feeney that left him with a broken jaw. Basquel’s absence would blunt Boden’s attack somewhat because, not only did he kick three glorious scores, he also acted as an excellent link between attack and defence. As the fog descended on Parnell Park, St Vincent’s began to gain the ascendancy and quickly carved out two goal chances. The first was well saved by Paul Durcan who tipped over for a point. Shane Carthy then blasted over when a goal was on. Even though the momentum was unquestionably with Vincent’s at this stage, they failed to build a sustained period of pressure on the Boden goal, and relied on four Mossy Quinn frees to give them a glimmer of hope. However, they failed to create further goal chances and Boden were able to see out the game in relative comfort.

The final whistle sparked wild celebrations as the Firhouse club claimed their first Dublin Senior Football Championship since 2009. They had won it the hard way, beating Kilmacud Crokes, Oliver Plunkett’s and St Vincent’s en route. But even as a jubilant Darragh Nelson held the cup aloft, attention was surely turning to the Leinster Championship and a quarter final meeting with Louth Champions St Pats in Drogheda next Sunday.

1. Paul Durcan 2. Bob Dwan 3. Stephen Hiney 4. Shane Clayton 5. Stephen O’Connor 6. Darragh Nelson 7. Darren O’Reilly 8. Michael Darragh Macauley 9. Declan O’Mahoney 27. Aran Waters 11. Ryan Basquel 12. Sean Gibbons 13. Colm Basquel 14. Conal Keaney 15. Andrew Kerin

Substitutions: 19. Donogh McCabe for O’Mahoney (34) 10. Daniel Davy for R Basquel (38) 20. Robbie McDaid for Gibbons (47) 21. David O’Callaghan for C Basquel (48) 17. Sam Molony for O’Reilly (51) 26. Shane Durkin for Waters (56)