Navan O'Mahonys survived the first-half dismissal of Gary O'Brien, a final quarter black card for Niall McKeigue and a closing minutes rally by Seneschalstown to open their SFC account with a 2-11 to 1-11 victory at Walterstown this afternoon.
O'Mahonys started impressively with the outstanding Oisin O'Brien firing a brilliant goal to boost them to a 1-6 to 0-1 lead after just 18 minutes, but Seneschalstown hung on in gamely and closed the gap to 0-4 to 1-7 before Gary O'Brien saw red in what could well have been a case of mistaken identity.
After the resumption Seneschalstown narrowed the deficit further with a Ronan Conneely point, but in a blistering three minute spell 14 man O'Mahonys made a burst for the finishing line with Oisin O'Brien bagging a brilliant goal to make it 2-9 to 0-5 after 35 minutes.
Despite conceding a goal to a brilliant strike from Dylan Keating O'Mahonys were cruising to victory, but they lost their way a bit when McKeigue picked up a black card and in the closing stages Seneschalstown outscored their opponents by 0-5 to 0-1.
Needing a second goal to salvage a draw Seneschalstown threw everything into attack, but their comeback fell short as O'Mahonys held on.
Full report, reaction and photographs in Tuesday's Meath Chronicle