Seven stand out moments in the 2017 All-Ireland SFC…
19 September 2017
The Air Corps, including Capt Sean McCarthy, Cmdt Frank Byrne and Capt Enda Walsh, fly over Croke Park before the All-Ireland SFC final clash between Dublin and Mayo.
With the All-Ireland senior football championship wrapped up for another year we take a look at some of the stand out moments over the past few months.
Diarmuid Connolly’s 12-week suspension
This became one of the talking points of the championship following Dublin’s 12-point defeat of Carlow in the Leinster quarter-finals in early June.
Connolly came in for plenty of attention from the Barrowsiders in Portlaoise and a side-line incident saw the St Vincent’s superstar pushing linesman Ciaran Brannigan. Although there was no action taken against the Dublin forward at the time he would be cited by the CCC and handed a 12-week ban which ruled him out for Jim Gavin’s side until the All-Ireland semi-finals.
Down shock Monaghan to reach Ulster final
Not many saw this one coming but on the afternoon of June 24th Eamonn Burns’ Down side stepped up to the plate big time in Clones to dump Monaghan out of the Ulster championship.
Hammered by 19 points against the same opposition in the previous year, the Mourne men propelled themselves into the final by grabbing the game’s only goal in the 42nd minute through a Daragh O’Hanlon penalty before holding on in the late stages to secure a sweet victory.
Rossies topple Tribe to take Connacht crown
Kevin McStay’s side may have started as third favourites in Connacht but they came up trumps on the big occasion come the second Sunday in July.
Goals from Cian Connolly and Brian Stack in each half led the Rossies to their first provincial crown in seven years in Salthill, where they’d completely outclassed the Tribesmen on the day.
Mayo and Cork play out extra time thriller
Of the nine games Mayo played this year to get back to the All-Ireland decider, this one was perhaps the closest call and certainly the most entertaining.
The 13,505 fans at Limerick’s Gaelic Grounds were treated to a match that had everything in it, including a brilliant 47-metre free from Rebels star Luke Connolly which forced extra time where Stephen Rochford’s men managed to prevail by the slenderest of margins (0-27 to 2-20).
Tyrone legend Cavanagh bows out
It wasn’t the way one of Tyrone’s most iconic players would have wanted to go out, but there was still plenty of emotion for Sean Cavanagh and his family after the team’s All-Ireland semi-final defeat to Dublin in late August.
The Moy man earned three All-Ireland titles, six Ulster crowns and five All Star awards during what was an remarkable 15-year career with the Red Hands.
Mayo end 21-year wait against Kingdom
It was a sweet moment for Mayo fans when their team finally got over the line against Kerry on the championship platform on a memorable August Saturday afternoon.
The drawn match between the two six days previous had been gripping championship stuff and Stephen Rochford’s men tore up the script for the replay, registering their goals through Diarmuid O’Connor and Andy Moran in either half to dump the Kingdom out of the Sam Maguire Cup race for the first time since 1996.
Rock holds nerve to seal three-in-a-row for Dubs
It all came down to one kick in the end and cometh the hour Dublin’s free-taking specialist Dean Rock was the man to deliver against Mayo last Sunday.
With the teams deadlocked on 1-16 each after 76 minutes of a thrilling All-Ireland final, the Ballymun Kickhams man settled the issue, breaking Mayo hearts once more in the process, as Jim Gavin’s men triumphed to a historic three-in-a-row.