Shane O'Brien's first game in charge of the Westmeath hurlers yielded a four-point win over Carlow in dreadful weather conditions at Kinnegad.
Goals in either half from the Raharney duo Joey Boyle and Robbie Greville ensured O'Brien's reign got off to a winning start and sets up a meeting with his native Dublin next Sunday.
Shane McGovern and Niall Mitchell combined to set up Boyle for the opening goal in the 17th minute which gave the home side a 1-3 to 0-3 lead. Carlow regained parity within five minutes through points from Chris Nolan (two) and Cathal Treacy before veteran Derek Nicholas gave Westmeath a 1-5 to 0-7 lead at the break.
Points from Eoin Price and Darragh Clinton extended the Lake County's advantage after the restart and they never looked back after Greville doubled their lead, 2-7 to 0-7, in the 45th minute.
Nolan top-scored with 0-11 for the visitors, but still finished on the losing side.
Westmeath - A McHugh; B Doyle, T Doyle (0-1), J Bermingham; C Shaw, A Craig, A Cox; J Rabbitte, E Price (0-2); J Boyle (1-0), J McCarthy, R Greville (1-2, 0-2f); S McGovern, D Clinton (0-2), N Mitchell. Subs: D McNicholas (0-4, 3f) for J Rabbitte, L Varley for J McCarthy, J Galvin (0-1) for S McGovern, C Lynch for A McHugh, A Ennis for J Bermingham, P Maxwell for E Price.
Carlow - D Jordan; S Whelan, Dara Tobin, M Doyle; K McDonald (0-1), D English, A Dunne; R Smithers, D Byrne; John Michael Nolan (0-1), Jon Nolan, A Amond; C Nolan (0-11, 7f), T Joyce, E Byrne. Subs: J Ryan for A Dunne, C Treacy (0-1) for Jon Nolan, Dean Tobin for T Joyce, T Daly for C Nolan.
Referee - C Daly.Tweet