Kilbarrack United 7
Jack Kelly produced a brilliant Leinster Junior Cup cameo as Kilbarrack United eased their way into the fourth round of the LFA Leinster Junior Cup on Saturday.
The lively young attacker came off the bench to add some serious shine to an already bright performance, hitting an 11-minute hat-trick as United pounded the Drum.
The Northside club’s Saturday side had the game won and both feet into the next round of a competition their Sunday side have some exciting recent history in before the former League of Ireland underage player entered the fray.
However, Kelly ensured they strut rather than just strolled into the next round as his quick-fire hat trick, his second treble in the tournament, helped increase their goal tally to seven.
Dano Loftus opened the scoring early for the home side finding the back of the net inside the first 10 minutes. Things then looked ominous for Drumcondra as Sean Cumminsky doubled the advantage after just 20.
The visitors to their credit responded well and managed to stay within touching distance up and until the hour mark when Loftus found the net again.
Kelly was then introduced and went about making sure of the result converting chances on the 76, 80 and 87 minutes. Dwayne McCourt also got in on the act hitting the back of the net between Kelly’s second and third strikes.
Crumlin’s Saturday side also managed a seven goal haul in the provincial contest. The Pearse Park side never looked like falling by the Leinster Junior wayside as they threatened to put double figures past Wayside Celtic on Saturday.
Paddy Steacy and Tommy Caffrey were both on the double as Adam Bennett, Nathan Benson and former LJC winner Stephen Larkin also found the net in one of the few games to go ahead last weekend.
Meanwhile, the FAI have written to all Grassroots clubs encouraging adherence to the Safer Return to Training & Play Protocols in light of the current COVID-19 situation.
They also revealed that a number of National Cup competitions will be rescheduled.
The next round of the FAI Intermediate Cup will now take place on February 20, the FAI Junior Cup will return on February 13, the Youth Cup has been pushed back until February 20, while the Youth Interleague Cup resumes on February 6 and the FAI U-17 Cup February 13.
All FAI Women’s National Competitions are currently scheduled to run as planned.
FAI Grassroots Director Ger McDermott added: “We have spoken with our Grassroots affiliates and with Sport Ireland in reaching these decisions and they are all supportive of this move ahead of the return of Grassroots football this weekend.
“Football can continue but we must be responsible and realistic in how we deal with the Omicron variant and the rising case numbers across the country.
“We will continue to liaise with Government and its agencies, with Sport Ireland and with our affiliates and we will review these changes to our FAI Safer Return to Grassroots Training & Play Protocols on an ongoing basis.
“I want to again acknowledge all our stakeholders for their continuing support for these Protocols and thank them for keeping Irish football safe for all involved with our game.”
Jack Kelly came off the bench to bag an 11-minute hat-trick as Kilbarrack cruised past Drumcondra into the fourth round of the Junior Cup