Hurling and camogie

Dunloy v Slaughtneil: how they rated

Michael McShane's Slaughtneil side were superb in defeat of Dunloy on Sunday. Picture by Seamus Loughran
Brendan Crossan and Neil Loughran

SLAUGHTNEIL

Oisin O’Doherty: A late replacement on the Emmet’s team, O’Doherty struggled with some of his short puck-outs and apart from one shot on his goal that hit the post, he was well protected for the most part by a brilliant defence. 6

Karl McKaigue: Gave a master-class in man-marking and decision-making. Never gave Conal Cunning room to breathe throughout and won some superb turnovers. 8

Sean Cassidy: Coughed up an early score to Eoin O’Neill but didn’t have much trouble for the rest of the game. Slaughtneil’s half-back line greatly helped his cause. 6.5

Cormac McKenna: A couple of loose possessions early on and Ronan Molloy got a couple of runs off him but steadied himself after the first 20 minutes and was tidy before his second-half withdrawal. 6

STAR MAN: Shane McGuigan: Who would be the man to mark Dunloy danger man Keelan Molloy? Shane McGuigan proved the prudent choice and the Slaughtneil half-back was exceptional from start to finish. Caught one super high ball early on and his star continued to rise after that. Keeping Molloy scoreless was the target, but McGuigan’s performance was so much more than simply that. 8.5

Sean O Caiside: Nicky McKeague was well-marshalled by O Caiside throughout. A picture of efficiency and kept Slaughtneil’s centre locked at all times. 7

Meehaul McGrath: Frustrated Nigel Elliott and was always well supported by his team-mates when the Dunloy man did get the ball in his hand. Made hay when Elliott was red-carded, sending over a lovely 45th minute score. 7

Gerald Bradley: Socks pulled up to his knees, the Slaughtneil sweeper hit a monster point in the first half that raised the roof and put the Derry men four up. Sensed danger every time. 7

Chrissy McKaigue: The 30-year-old captain played a canny game on ‘Shorty’ Shiels, pushing right up on the deep-lying midfielder. Made some telling tackles. Apart from one bad wide, McKaigue played a captain’s role. 7.5

Mark McGuigan: Had his work cut out against Eamonn Smyth who got forward down the flanks at times for Dunloy, but never stopped working and pointed late on. 6.5

Cormac O’Doherty: Missed a couple of placed balls in the early stages but was virtually flawless after the first quarter. Showed delightful skill in possession at times. Won and converted Slaughtneil’s penalty. 8.5

Brendan Rogers: Had Ryan McGarry on the back foot in the first half, hitting two points and might have had a goal. Quieter second half. 7.5

Se McGuigan: Phelim Duffin did a decent marking job on McGuigan but the Slaughtneil corner-forward got more joy in the second half with his pace causing the Dunloy defence problems. 7

Jerome McGuigan: Had a good old-fashioned battle with Conor McKinley on the edge of the square. Generally well contained but still hit two points from play. 6

Brian Cassidy: Assisted for a couple of Brendan Rogers’ runs and grabbed a point himself before suffering a second yellow in stoppage-time. 6

Substitutes

Conor McAllister: Slotted in for Cormac McKenna when Dunloy’s challenge was beginning to fade. 5

Conor McKenna: Not on long enough to be rated.

Gareth O’Kane: Not on long enough to be rated.

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Gregory O'Kane's Dunloy struggled to get to grips with Slaughtneil during Sunday's Ulster final defeat in Newry. Picture by Seamus Loughran

DUNLOY

Ryan Elliott: A couple of first half puck-outs missed their target and were seized upon by Slaughtneil. Made a great save to deny Rogers a goal early on, and did well to close the space on Jerome McGuigan when a late goal looked on. Was also calm under pressure when surrounded by maroon jerseys on a couple of occasions. 6.5

Phelim Duffin: Started well but found the movement and pace of Se McGuigan hard to get a read on as the game wore on. 5.5

Conor McKinley: Just as was the case in their last Ulster Club meeting two years ago, had a good tussle with the towering Jerome McGuigan, making some timely interceptions. Probably just shaded it. 6.5

Conor Kinsella: Picked up Cormac O’Doherty and although the Slaughtneil man did well to win the penalty, the pair were fairly evenly-matched for most of the afternoon. 6

Eamon Smyth: There was little change given between him and Mark McGuigan, with Smyth showing up well in the first half before finding the going tougher as the game wore on. 6

Ryan McGarry: Marking Brendan Rogers is an onerous task for anybody, and McGarry struggled to get to grips his sheer power and physicality. Better days lie ahead. 5.5

Kevin McKeague: Probably broke even with Brian Cassidy, although the Slaughtneil man’s movement and quick delivery to Rogers caused some early bother. 6

Paul Shiels: Came off second best in the first half against Chrissy McKaigue. Wasn’t afforded the space to dictate play the way he can in that period, but got on the ball more after the break. 6

Kevin Molloy: Struggled to get into the game in the face of Slaughtneil’s aerial assault, with the men in maroon dominant around the middle. 5.5

Nigel Elliott: So impressive against Ballycran but, like so many of his fellow forwards, found the going tough yesterday. Didn’t score, with space at a premium, and was eventually shown a red card after picking up two unnecessary yellows. 5

Nicky McKeague: Sean O Caiside was one of several Slaughtneil players who made their presence felt both on the skies and in the ground. There were no holes for McKeague to exploit, and he was replaced. A frustrating day. 5.5

Ronan Molloy: Scored a classy point in the second half and had his first half shot found the net instead of the post, who knows what bearing it could have had on this game? 6

Eoin O’Neill: Started well, with his pace causing Sean Cassidy some early problems, but the Slaughtneil man was so well protected O’Neill had little opportunity to impact the game. Eventually withdrawn early in the second half. 5.5

Conal Cunning: Had a mixed day from placed balls, but three wides at the start of the second half were a hammer blow as Dunloy tried to force their way back into the game. 6

Keelan Molloy: Superb against Ballycran but brilliantly marshalled by Shane McGuigan yesterday. Was brought down as he advanced into the square early on, but peripheral thereafter. 5

Substitutes

Gabriel McTaggart: Came on for Eoin O’Neill with 16 minutes to go but wasn’t able to help Dunloy stem the tide. 5.5

Seaan Elliott: Should he have been introduced earlier? We’ll never know if it would have made a difference. Scored a point in his 10 minute cameo but by the time he joined the action Slaughtneil were in control. 6

Chrissy Brogan: Not on long enough to be rated.

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