Na Fianna’s Donal Burke hit 1-16 in tonight’s Leinster Quarter Final to send Dublin through to a Semi Final clash with Kilkenny

Donal Burke - Leinster Quarter Final

Dublin 2-31
Laois 0-23

Whether it was a statement of intent, a incredible hunger to get going, or sweet revenge after last year’s All Ireland qualifier, but Mattie Kenny’s Dublin Senior Hurlers put in a controlled and skillful performance to run out 14 point winners over Eddie Brennan’s Laois side tonight in an empty Croke Park. Their reward? A Leinster Senior Hurling Semi Final clash with Kilkenny next weekend at the same venue.

Donal Burke was in the form of his life as Dublin methodically sent over score after score, with the Na Fianna man scoring 1-16, and only sending two attempts wide of the mark.

Laois now have one more chance to qualify for the All Ireland Championship after battling hard to close the gap to 6 points during the game as we entered the final 15 minutes. But Dublin drove the game home and an Eamonn Dillon cameo saw the Finbarrs man raise agreen flag late on to put the game well out of sight of the men from the O’Moore County.

Dublin Fire On All Cylinders From Throw In

While the game might have looked like an in house training session in spells, it was Dublin’s far superior scoring threat that stood above everything else.

Eoghan O’Donnell in the full back line and St. Vincents Conor Burke at sweeper made things difficult for the Laois forward line all night. And Burke himself looked dangerous going forward, registering 2 points to start his tally.

Dublin were 5 points clear of Laois when Donal Burke set off from the 45 metre line to shade the Laois defence and finish low past Enda Rowland into the Laois net. Minutes later the game could have been all but done, but Rian McBride’s shot saw Rowland pull off a very impressive close range save to deny Dublin a bigger half time lead. But at 7 points clear there looked like there was no way back for Laois at the break.

Laois upped their game in the second half, but it was too late

Five minutes into the second session, Dublin had stretched their lead to 11 points, but Laois began to control the play a little better and found space in the middle of the park to slot over some vital long range points. Enda Rowland sent over some crucial scores from distance to close the gap to 6 before the water break. But in the closing 10 minutes Dublin’s fitness shone through hitting eight of the last 10 scores. And Eamonn Dillon’s additional time goal was the icing on the cake for Mattie Kenny’s men as they look ahead to next week.

Scorers for Dublin:

Donal Burke 1-16 (11f, 2 ’65)
Chris Crummey 0-03
Eamonn Dillon 1-01
Danny Sutcliffe 0-02
Conor Burke 0-02
Cian Boland 0-02
Davy Keogh 0-01
Sean Moran 0-01
Rian McBride 0-01
Mark Schutte 0-01

Scorers for Laois:

Ross King 0-10 (0-10f)
Paddy Purcell 0-02
Aaron Dunphy 0-02
Enda Rowland 0-02 (2f)
Stephen Maher 0-02
Ryan Mullaney 0-01
Fiachra Fennelly 0-01
Padraig Delaney 0-01
James Ryan 0-01

Dublin

1. Alan Nolan
2. Paddy Smyth
5. Conor Burke
4. James Madden
3. Eoghan O’Donnell
6. Daire Gray
7. Cian O’Callaghan
8. Seán Moran
9. Riain McBride
10. Cian Boland
13. Donal Burke
12. Danny Sutcliffe
14. Davy Keogh
15. Ronan Hayes
11. Chris Crummey

Dublin Substitutes:

22. Eamon Dillon for Hayes (50)
26. Liam Rushe for Crummey (56)
18. Jake Malone  for Gray (60)
24. Mark Schutte for Boland (68)
17. Shane Barrett for Moran (71)

Laois

1. Enda Rowland
4. Donnchadh Hartnett
5. Ronan Broderick
2. Lee Cleere
3. Sean Downey
6. Padraig Delaney
7. Ryan Mullaney
8. Fiachra C Fennell
13. James Keyes
9. Patrick Purcell
10. Aaron Dunphy
11. Willie Dunphy
12. James Ryan
14. Ross King
15. Stephen Maher

Laois Substitutes:

22. Jack Kelly for Cleere (33)
19. Ciaran McEvoy for Broderick (35)
26. Mark Kavanagh for Keyes (ht)
21. Conor Phelan for Mullaney (50)
24. Eoin Gaughan for Maher (68)