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Last Updated: Sunday, 3 December 2006, 15:25 GMT
Ballinderry 0-3 0-5 Crossmaglen
Stephen Clarke and Donal Murtagh celebrate
Stephen Kernan celebrates with his manager Donal Murtagh
Crossmaglen edged past Ballinderry to lift the AIB Ulster Senior Football crown after a dour struggle at Casement Park on Sunday.

Played in atrocious conditions, it took a late surge by the Armagh kingpins to lift the silverware for a fifth time.

Veteran Oisin McConville grabbed a couple of points with Cross star David McKenna along with Brendan McKeown and Johnny Murtagh also on target.

Conleith Gilligan scored twice for Ballinderry the first after 50 minutes.

The cold inclement weather played a major part in the low-scoring first half.

Ballinderry attempted to slow down the pace of the game as they battled into the strong breeze that swirled down from the Black Mountain.

However, they never seemed too comfortable as Cross forced the pace, but they nevertheless their scrambled defence paid dividends.

After a couple of near misses, Cross finally got the game properly under way when McConville slipped over the opening point in the 12th minute.

It was turning out to be a physical battle with Tony and Stephen Kernan along with Tony McEntee earning themselves yellow cards for over-robust play by the Cross trio.

But Ballinderry, though, would have been happy with their all-round effort in the opening half.

Crossmaglen captain Oisin McConville
Cross captain Oisin McConville holds aloft the Ulster Club silverware

It was a piece of indiscipline that allowed Cross to snap up a second point in first half injury time when a loose tongue saw them marched back another 10 metres allowing McConville to notch his second point.

The second half was no better than the first as both teams could not string together any constructive play.

Again like the first, it took 12 minutes for a score to come along adn was scored by Donal Murtagh's side.

Hanratty was set free to weave his way deep into the Ballinderry half and it was David McKenna who rifled over his side's third point.

Cross then had a goal disallowed five minutes later when the ball was bundled into the net Brendan McKeown, but the referee had already blown for a square ball.

Ballinderry finally troubled the scoreboard when substitute James Bateson made the running for Conlieith Gilligan rifled over his side's opening point.

It was nervous finish for Cross as Ballinderry got stronger as the game neared the finish with Gilligan swooping for his second point in the 53rd minute.

Ballinderry were reduced to 14 men near the end when Bateson picked up two quick yellow cards and immediately McKeown picked off point number four for Cross after good work by McKenna and substitute Francie Bellew.

Cross made sure of success when John Murtagh fired over another score in injury time with Enda Muldoon's final effort too little too late for Ballinderry.


Ballinderry: M Conlan; K McGuckin, N McCusker, D Crozier; Paul Wilson, Ronan McGuckin; Michael McIvor, J Conway, K McGuckin, D Conway; C Gilligan (0-2), M Harney; S Donnelly, E Muldoon (0-1), R Wilkinson.

Crossmaglen: P Hearty; R Carragher, D McKenna (0-1), S McNamee; P Kernan, J Donaldson, B McKeown (0-1); T McEntee, S Kernan, S Clarke; J McEntee, O McConville (0-2); M McNamee, J Hanratty, T Kernan. Substitute: J Murtagh (0-1).



SEE ALSO
Crossmaglen boss hopeful over duo
27 Nov 06 |  Gaelic Games
Crossmaglen 1-9 0-11 Clontibret
26 Nov 06 |  Gaelic Games
Ballinderry 1-15 3-7 E Ciaran
26 Nov 06 |  Gaelic Games


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