Leinster Club Champions St Vincent’s proved too strong against a resilient Round Tower challenge on Saturday evening in the first round of the Leinster Championship. Towers can take a lot of positives from the performance against the formidable North Dublin side.

Vincent’s opened the scoring thru a Enda Varley free before Micheál Walsh, who was lively throughout the game, attacked at pace and was pulled back. Thomas Galvin slotted the free. Vincent’s settled and kicked six without reply. But Towers supporters were on their feet in the 13th minute with the opening goal of the game. A great win by Kevin McGibney on the 40 led to him releasing Galvin up the left. He released to Darragh Kinnevey and he cut across the keeper to strike low beyond him. Vincent’s kicked a further three without reply before Towers raised the green flag once again. Mick Hallows won well in the middle and released to Kinnevey on the 40. He played a really clever one-two with McGibney to advance on goal and struck right footed past Dublin keeper Michael Savage. The goal stung Vincent’s and they responded with two goals in the space of a minute. Derek Murray advanced from the full back role and carried up the left before feeding into Galvin. He took on two Vincent’s defenders before being pulled back and he kicked the free. It was the final score of the opening half, leaving the deficit at the break seven points, 2-9 v 2-7.

Towers were made to wait for Vincent’s for the second half to commence and we were first out of the blocks. Shane Byrne won well in midfield and he palmed off to James Kelly who angled a pass inside to McGibney. He broke in on goal and a tug back led to a penalty. Kelly dispatched the kick. But Vincent’s class was constant and they assumed full control. They led  2-13 v 3-2 with ten minutes remaining. Walsh continued to get on the ball and he found Adam Doyle who held it up well before releasing the onrushing Walsh. A pull on his journey led to a free that Ian Ward kicked from 30 metres. Kinnevey turned sharp to bring our tally to 3-4 with Conor L’Estrange providing the assist. With the game all but up, keeper Gary Cleary pulled off an excellent save to deny Vincent’s half-forward Joe Feeney but Craig Brennan tapped the rebound to an empty net. It finished 3-19 v 3-4, as Towers move onto the B Championship.

Round Tower: Gary Cleary, Seán O’Donnagáin, Derek Murray, Dan Gregg, Niall Corless, James Kelly, Barry Keane, Shane Byrne, Liam Connolly, Mick Hallows, Ian Ward, Micheál Walsh, Thomas Galvin, Darragh Kinnevey, Kevin McGibney. Used subs: Trevor Clendenning, Darren Gilligan, Adam Doyle, Brian Costello, Conor L’Estrange.