While hurling took centre stage across television coverage today, it was Gaelic football that provided the drama as Armagh and Cavan played out a thrilling draw in the Ulster semi-final.
The sides will have to do it all again next Sunday in Clones to decide who will earn a place in the Ulster football final against Tyrone/Donegal.
Meanwhile, Kildare overcame Longford on the second time of asking while it was all relatively straight-forward in Munster on Saturday night as Cork and Kerry both booked their places in the Munster football final.
Read our full round-up of the weekend’s Gaelic football action below.
Ulster Senior Football Championship
Cavan 0-17 Armagh 1-14
We are still no closer to discovering the line up of the 2019 Ulster final following today’s epic draw between Armagh and Cavan in Clones.
Cian Mackey was the hero for Mickey Graham’s side today as his two points in the final 10 minutes of normal time forced extra-time while the substitute was also responsible for scoring the levelling point at the death to ensure the replay.
A draw was always on the cards in this game as the sides were level on numerous occasions throughout the first half and stood on seven points apiece at half-time.
Jarlath Óg Burns put his side firmly in the driving seat on the 40-minute mark when he buried the ball in the Cavan goal following a wonderful assist from Jamie Clarke and they maintained a narrow lead until Mackey’s points to level the game.
Armagh led throughout extra-time but they were again denied the win and a place in their first Ulster final since 2008. Next week’s replay will form part of a double-header with Monaghan and Fermanagh in the first round of the qualifiers.
Leinster Senior Football Championship
Longford 0-10 Kildare 1-18
Kildare recovered from a slow start to comprehensively overcome Longford in the Leinster semi-final replay on Sunday afternoon.
The two sides played out a 3-15 to 1-21 draw last week but matters were more straight-forward in Tullamore today as Fergal Conway’s goal set Kildare on their way to the solid victory.
It was a bizarre opening period with neither side registering a score until the 18th minute when David Givney pointed for Longford before Conway replied with the goal less than a minute later to spur Kildare on. The underdogs remained undeterred with McGivney and Joe Hagan adding points to leave them trailing by 1-4 to 0-4 at the break.
They were the first on the scoreboard in the second half but Kildare quickly found their rhythm and points from Conway, Neil Flynn and Ben McCormack soon saw them stretch their lead to eight points.
Despite Longford’s efforts to stay in the game, Kildare eventually proved too strong and sailed to the win. They will now face Dublin in the provincial semi-final next weekend.
Munster Senior Football Championship
Cork 3-18 Limerick 0-6
There was no fairytale upset for Limerick on Saturday night in Pairc Ui Rinn as they fell to a hefty 21-point loss to Cork in the Munster semi-final.
It took until the 26th minute for the Treaty men to register their first score by which time Cork had already put 3-16 on the board. Brian Hurley grabbed their first two goals in the opening five minutes before Ruairi Deane added a third in the 12th minute.
Hurley was denied a third goal when his penalty shortly before half-time hit the post after Paul Kerrigan had been pulled down in the square. It was of little consequence to the Rebels as the scoreboard at the break read 3-8 to 0-2 in their favour.
Mark Collins continued his scoring form in the second half, landing three in a row before Limerick Donal O’Sullivan pointed a 45 for Limerick. Eoghan McSweeney and substitute Stephen Sherlock rounded off the win for Cork who now look forward to a Munster final date with Kerry later this month.
Clare 0-12 Kerry 1-15
It was far from convincing but Kerry eventually overcame the strong challenge of Clare to book their place in another Munster final against Cork.
Peter Keane’s side dominated the opening half of the game with their lethal full-forward line of David Clifford, Paul Geaney and James O’Donoghue all contributing.
Clifford registered three points during that period while O’Donoghue’s goal in the 33rd minute stretched their lead to nine points and it looked as though Kerry would sail into the decider.
Sean O’Shea was deadly accurate with his attempts just after half-time scoring three points from frees but Eoin Cleary responded with a placed ball of his own. Clare began to find their feet in the game as Cleary, Jamie Malone and Cathal O’Connor all added further scores.
They were dealt a huge blow after Kevin Hartnett was stretchered off after a collision with O’Shea. They continued to push on and, in total, scored seven points without reply in the closing stages as Kerry failed to turn up and also had Mark Griffin sent off after a second yellow.
However, much to the dismay of the home crowd, Kerry held on for a six-point win.