13-man Trim seal semi-final spot in a thriller

Despite losing two players to straight red cards in the opening quarter Trim got the better of 14-man Ratoath by 4-13 to 0-18 in a thrilling SHC encounter at Pairc Tailteann this afternoon.

In 60 seconds of madness between the 13th and 14th minutes three players were sent to the line by referee Bernard Heaney with Dylan Farrell picking up a straight red on the advice of a linesman who spotted an off-the-ball clash with Padraig Byrne.

After Heaney was finished dealing with that incident a mini-melee broke out which resulted in the Clann na nGael official dealing out red cards to Trim's Dimmy Higgins and Ratoath's Gavin McGowan.

Instead of having a negative effect on the game, the extra space created by fewer players on the field contributed to a superb contest which Trim shaded following a supreme defensive display.

The teams were tied three times before Padraic O'Hanrahan made it 0-4 to 0-3 from a '65' and before play resumed the three players were red carded.

Ratoath looked to have settled well and pulled 0-7 to 0-4 clear, but James Murray hit the first of his three goals to drag Trim level again before Ratoath edged into a 0-10 to 1-5 half-time lead.

when play resumed Trim responded with three successive points before an excellent David Murtagh goal made it 2-8 to 0-10.

The excellent free-taking of Padraic O'Hanrahan kept Ratoath in the game and on two occasions in the closing stages the deficit was down to one.

With just five minutes left Ratoath trailed 0-17 to 2-12, but Trim finished with a flourish with Murray bagging two more goals to complete his hat-trick and book Trim's place in the last four.

SCORERS

Trim - James Murray 3-5 five frees; David Murtagh 1-2; Brian Dowling 0-2; Mikey Cole 0-1; Alan Douglas 0-1; Mikey Cullen 0-1; Conor Quigley 0-1.

Ratoath - Padraic O'Hanrahan 0-13 11 frees, two '65s'; Darragh Kelly 0-2 one free; Daithi McGowan 0-1; Cian Rogers 0-1; Bryan McMahon 0-1.

SHC GROUP A

P W L D F A Pts

Kiltale 4 4 0 0 93 68 8

Trim 4 3 0 1 103 66 7

Kildalkey 4 2 2 0 85 83 4

Ratoath 4 1 2 1 73 75 3

Na Fianna 4 0 2 2 67 78 2

St Peter's 4 0 4 0 52 103 0

Round five fixtures - Ratoath v Kildalkey, Trim v Kiltale, Na Fianna v St Peter's.

Full match report and photographs in Tuesday's Meath Chronicle.