Date Time Competition Season
17 October 2021 2:30 pm Leitrim SFC 2021

Match Report

Ballinamore bridge 31 year gap

In a game that offered everything Leitrim Senior Champions Mohill were dethroned by a resiliant team performance from the underdogs who had a brilliant team goal finished by Niall McGovern and some top notch saves from goalkeeper Darren Maxwell as the inspiration to turn a second half deficit into a victory to secure the Fenagh Cup for the first time in 31 seasons.

When the final whistle blew on the 1991 County Final in Leitrim no one would have expected that county kingpins Ballinamore who had secured four victories from nine final appearances in the previous decade would be waiting thirty one years for their next title.

A fine team display from the eventual champions included two top drawer saves from Darren Maxwell, solid defending from his defensive unit, the playmaking of Wayne McKeon, the strong running of the McGovern brothers, Luke Murphy's consistency from dead balls and a fine scoring cameo from Tom Prior in front of the new Leitrim manager Andy Moran.

Defending champions Mohill who had been untouchable in the early stages of the championship had been hotly fancied coming into this decider. They produced an impressive display of shooting from distance led by their talisman Keith Beirne ably assisted by Keith Keegan and Jordan Reynolds.

The underdogs started brightly with two points on the board before the first minute was out. A Luke Murphy free and Paddy Connaughton effort setting the pace for an entire encounter that wouldn't disappoint.

Mohill sharp shooters Jordan Reynolds and Keith Beirne opened their accounts with two impressive points to level matters, the first of many times the sides would be drawn level throughout the game.

Shane Moran and Luke Murphy added scores for Ballinamore before that lead was halved by Beirne with another fine effort from long range.

Sean O'Heslins could have found the back of the net but a precision shoulder challenge from David Mitchell on Niall McGovern snuffed out the danger.

Wayne McKeon and Beirne swapped scores before Jordan Reynolds broke through on goal and forced a fine save out of Darren Maxwell. Less than a minute later he was called into action again, a Mohill attack saw him forced to parry a shot from Keith Keegan.

Sean Harkin got in on the long range scoring act for Mohill to give Mohill the lead for the first time in the encounter. Once again within a minute Ballinamore were level through a Wayne McKeon effort.

The challengers took the lead through Michael McKiernan after Mohill lost a free after Keegan reacted to winning a few with a push on Shane Moran and the resulting throw in broke on the Ballinamore side.

Once again the lead changed hands with two scores for Mohill from Beirne (45') and Evan Harkin.

In a display that will have impressed Moran in the stands Tom Prior popped up with his first score for the Ballinamore team before Beirne lands another score from just inside the 45' metre line.

Wayne McKeon and Shane Quinn swap scores to leave the defending champions a point ahead at the interval. 0-10 to 0-9.

The start of the second half gave an indication of what was to come. A ball in from Dean McGovern dropped at the feet of Tom Prior who was upended in the Mohill penalty box. Gareth Foley waved away the protests before the ball broke down the other end of the pitch.

Sean Harkin engineered a shooting chance and his low powerful effort brought out a fantastic save from Darren Maxwell as the Ballinamore netminder forced the ball around the base of the post.

Wayne McKeon and Keith Beirne (2) each added to their personal tallies but a Keith Keegan point put Mohill ahead by three points with twenty minutes left to play as it appeared that Mohill would repeat their Semi Final performance and find another gear to seal the victory.

Tom Prior and Keith Beirne both once again raised white flags before Luke Murphy drew Mohill's lead back to a two point gap.

After the second half water break a dozen minutes or so on the clock Shane Moran made a break and split the posts to reduce the deficit further and ensure a grandstand finish to the game.

Ballinamore really started to take control of the game as Senan Harte levelled matters to finish off a fine Sean O'Heslins move with McKeon stepping up to push his side ahead moment later from a free kick.

The defining moment of the game arrived with four minutes left on the clock as a quick fire attack found it's way from Luke Murphy to Dean McGovern who played his brother in an he coolly finished the ball to the bottom corner of Padraig Tighe's net to put O'Heslins four points ahead.

Mohill's captain Danny Beck pulled one back with two minutes on the clock and when Keith Beirne added a free two minutes into injury time the Mohill faithful sensed a comeback might be but the goalscorer McGovern ensure the coffin was nailed firmly shut on those hopes with a point five minutes into injury time.

The celebrations were in full flow moments later when Gareth Foley's whistle brought an end to 31 years without senior glory for the club who lead Leitrim's Senior Roll of Honour.

Audio Commentary

Listen back to each half of the Leitrim GAA Championship Final between Ballinamore Sean O'Heslins and Mohill. Commentary from: Derek Kelleher with former Mohill Championship winning manager Padraic Davis


1Padraig Tighe Goalkeeper
2David Mitchell Defender
3Alan Armstrong Forward
4Oisin Madden Defender
5James Mitchell Defender
6Shane Quinn Forward 30+1'
7Daniel Beck Defender 58'
8Keith Keegan Midfielder 39', 60+4'
9Domhnaill Flynn Forward
10Evan Harkin 21 Forward 26'
11Keith Beirne Forward 5', 10', 15', 25', 29', 36', 37', 42', 60'
12Sean Harkin Defender 20'
13Alan McLoughlin 17 Forward 51'
14Ronan Kennedy 19 Forward
15Jordan Reynolds Forward 3', 18'
16Jason Farry Goalkeeper
17Caillin Canning 13 Defender
18Liam Rowley Defender
19Fiachra McGuinness 14 Forward
20Shane McGowan Defender
21Ronan Gordon 10 Forward
22Jonathan Reynolds Midfielder
23Darragh Gordon Forward
24Darren McLoughlin Midfielder
25Donal Duignan Defender
26Conor Quinn Defender
27Ethan Harkin Forward
28Johnny Boyle Defender
29Alan Tuthill Defender
30Tadgh Mulligan Midfielder
32Barry Lupton Forward
33Cian McGuinness Forward
34Ciaran Baxter Defender
35Keoghan Curran Defender
37Conor Mulligan Forward
38Jamie Stenson Forward

Sean O'Heslins

1Darren Maxwell Goalkeeper
2Liam Ferguson Defender
3Oisin McCaffrey Defender
4Matthew Murphy 19 Defender
5Paddy Connaughton 11 Forward 1'
6Keelan McHugh Defender
7Wayne McKeon Midfielder 13', 21', 30', 34', 55'
8Shane Moran Midfielder 6', 48'
9Dean McGovern Forward
12Michael McKiernan Forward 23'
13Luke Murphy Forward 1', 8', 44'
14Niall McGovern Forward 56'
15Tom Prior Forward 28', 40'
17Mark McGrory 10 Forward
20Brian Banks Defender
16Denis Dolan Goalkeeper
11Cathal McHugh 5 Defender
10Senan Harte 17 Defender 54'
19Peter Reynolds 4 Forward
21Andrew Burns Forward
  • 65'

    And that is all for this season for the Leitrim Senior Football Championship. Thanks for joining us for our coverage here on over the last few months.

  • 65'

    Gareth Foley blows the final whistle and ends Ballinamore\'s wait for Senior Championship honours as they bridge a gap of 31 years to secure the Fenagh Cup.

  • 65'

    It's fitting that the goalscorer adds the points that most likely will finish this contest in favour of the Ballinamore club for their 21st Leitrim Senior crown and their first win in 31 years.

  • 64'

    Ballinamore penalised for touching the ball on the ground creates an opportunity for Mohill and Keith Keegan scores to reduce the lead to a single point. Can Mohill pull another score to level this up once more. No extra time today, a replay in two weeks will be the result if they finish level here.

  • 60'

    Keith Beirne scores another point from a free to reduce the league to just two points.

  • 60'

    Five minutes to be played at the end of this half.

  • 60'

    Barry McGovern comes in to replace Luke Murphy for the five minutes of injury time for Ballinamore. Can his side hold on to their 3 point lead here.

  • 60'

    Shane Moran sees yellow after a clash with his Leitrim team mate Shane Quinn. A little harsh perhaps but unlikely to affect the rest of the game from here.

  • 59'

    Ronan Gordon is another roll of the dice as he replaces Evan Harkin. He's been scoring well in Mohill's second string this summer, can he make the difference today.

  • 58'

    Mohill Captain has stepped up and is leading by example as he finds the target to bring the game back to a single score. They trail by a goal now. Can they find the scores in the remaining time.

  • 56'

    And we have a showdown now. Tom Prior worked the ball back from a dead end in the corner to Luke Murphy who's pass was received by Dean McGovern at pace, he fed his brother Niall. A faked pass to Senan Harte created the space to shoot and his powerful effort found the bottom corner of Padraig Tighe's net to put four between the sides and the underdogs are on course to cause an upset here. Can they close a gap back 31 years to their last Championship success. Four minutes to play here in Carrick.

  • 55'

    Peter Reynolds enters the action for Sean O'Heslins as Mathew Murphy makes way.

  • 55'

    Wayne McKeon shows that pressure is for tyres as he slides the ball over the bar from a free kick outside the 45 metre line. His kicking technique off the outside of his foot is flawless.

  • 54'

    A great team effort from Ballinamore. Another steal, this time from Wayne McKeon where his trademark long range passes picks out Senan Harte. Harte swaps passes with Shane Moran, beats his man and levels matters once again as Ballinamore Sean O'Heslins start to believe they can win this game.

  • 52'

    While Mohill also make a change to their personnel on duty. Cailin Canning for Alan McLoughlin.

  • 52'

    Cathal McHugh comes on to replace Paddy Connaughton for Ballinamore.

  • 51'

    Alan McLoughlin picks up a booking for Mohill after an interaction with the linesman is brought to the referee's attention.

  • 51'

    Niall McGovern enters the referee's book fairly lightly after coming together with Danny Beck.

  • 50'

    And we have the major talking point of the game a quick move up the pitch from a steal from Paddy Connaughton to Luke Murphy and Dean McGovern find the ball to Shane Moran who goes around Mohill keeper Tighe but finds his poor effort pushed off the line by David Mitchell who has ended up lying across the line. Major shouts for a penalty but the referee and umpires simply wave away the protests from the Ballinamore players. Moran should have done better but could that be the major talking point if Mohill hold on to win this game.

  • 48'

    It's a big moment in the game as Ballinamore break up a Mohill attack and break the length of the pitch for Shane Moran to bounce off a few defenders and slot the ball between the posts for Ballinamore to bring the game back to a single point with just a dozen minutes left on the clock.

  • 46'

    Another important defensive tackle as James Mitchell steals possession from the toe of Tom Prior as he prepares to shoot in. Could that be the match winning moment for Mohill.

  • 44'

    Tom Prior is growing into the final as he turns Oisin Madden inside out and draws the foul for Luke Murphy to add another point to his tally.

  • 42'

    Beirne makes no mistake with the simple free to restore the three point advantage.

  • 41'

    Now it's Ballinamore's turn to play silly buggers as a stray shoulder from Wayne McKeon after he passed the ball results in a free for Beirne. Oisin McCaffrey must have said something to the official as the ball is moved closer to the goal.

  • 40'

    Tom Prior stops the slide for Ballinamore with a much needed score after a quick free kick from Luke Murphy created a bit of space for the young forward.

  • 39'

    Mohill are really finding their groove now with a great move from their own goalmouth through a few sets of hands to Keith Keegan who swings a score over with his left foot. It's the biggest margin we've had in the game so far. Can Mohill press home their advantage now.

  • 37'

    Another questionable free awarded to Mohill after Keith Keegan could easily have been penalised himself. Keith Beirne adds the score from the free but how important will these free kicks be when the Fenagh Cup is being awarded in just over 20 minutes time.

  • 36'

    A bit of good fortune for Mohill as Keith Beirne collects a soft free where the ball landed after a missed effort under a bit of pressure from Ballinamore. He makes no mistake with the 13 metre free to put his side ahead once more.

  • 34'

    Another free opportunity for Ballinamore to level the scores here and Wayne McKeon makes no mistake from distance.

  • 34'

    Shane Quinn picks up the games first yellow card for a collision with Dean McGovern.

  • 32'

    Darren Maxwell has produced a fabulous save to get down quickly to force Sean Harkin's powerful effort around the base of the upright. It's his third meaningful interaction and he's kept his side in touch here.

  • 31'

    And we're back underway in this enthralling clash. Dean McGovern wins the throw in for Ballinamore and a long ball in almost makes it to Tom Prior who has a penalty claim but waved away by Foley.

  • 30'

    Referee Gareth Foley draws the first half to a close. 0-10 to 0-09 in favour of defending champions Mohill with fifteen of those very impressive scores coming from play and only one wide recorded during the opening half hour. All to play for here in the second half.

  • 30'

    Beirne turns provider as he feeds the ball to his Mohill and Leitrim teammate Shane Quinn who gets in on the act for the defending champions putting them once again into the lead in this end to end championship final.

  • 30'

    Prior is now beginning to grow into the game. as he finds a bit of space and his pace is causing havoc for the Mohill defenders who are forced to foul him to stop him in his tracks. Wayne McKeon taps over the 13 metre free to level the score again.

  • 29'

    As good as his shooting display has been so far Keith Beirne has out done himself. He puts Mohill ahead with a fine score, striking the ball as he was challenged by Ballinamore full back Oisin McCaffrey he finds the target from just inside the 45' metre line for his 5th score of the game.

  • 28'

    He'd been kept well controlled up to now but Tom Prior finally popped up with his first score. A great move from Ballinamore and the teams are level again.

  • 26'

    A great move from Mohill who intercept the kick out and manage to work the ball through a few sets of hands before Evan Harkin takes possession at speed and splits the post to put Mohill one point ahead as the game approaches the half way point.

  • 25'

    Brian Banks concedes a 45' in the process of tackling Jordan Reynolds. Keith Beirne makes no mistake off the ground from the resulting 45'.

  • 24'

    It's been a battle for both sides trying to create goal scoring opportunities with both side's defenders stealing possession from marauding forwards. This time it's Mohill captain Danny Beck who recovers the ball.

  • 23'

    Once again Mohill show flashes of petulance as Shane Moran gives a way a foul after great defensive steal by Keith Keegan for Mohill. A unnecessary push by Keegan sees Moran on the ground and the ball turned over. Michael McKiernan adds a point from the next possession.

  • 21'

    Former Leitrim star Wayne McKeon uses his power to force his opponent away and create space for himself to level proceedings up with a fine score from close range.

  • 20'

    Sean Harkin has joined in Mohill's long range shooting display here with the lead score for his side as Mohill begin to turn the screw and take control of this game.

  • 18'

    A lovely ball from Shane Quinn find Keith Keegan in space in the penalty box and under pressure he forces another important save from Maxwell between the posts for Ballinamore.

  • 18'

    Shane Quinn secured a mark from the kick out and a found Jordan Reynolds, his strong run and goalbound effort is deflected over the bar, by a fine save from keeper Darren Maxwell, for a point to level matters but Reynolds may rue that opportunity to put his side ahead for the first time in the game.

  • 17'

    Domhnall Flynn is fouled on the attack but Keith Beirne pulls his effort uncharacteristically to the right of the goal as the referee blows for the water break with Sean O'Heslins leading by a single point. It's game on here in Carrick on Shannon.

  • 15'

    A fantastic run by Keith Keegan sees him feed Keith Beirne who finds the target once more from distance in a very accurate display of shooting from the Leitrim player.

  • 13'

    Wayne McKeon takes on the free taking duties for Ballinamore on his favoured side and makes no mistake after another Mohill defensive error is further penalised and moved in by match official Foley.

  • 11'

    That could be vital. A fantastic defensive shoulder from David Mitchell on the advancing Niall McGovern gives Shane Quinn the opportunity to get back and clear the lines when that Ballinamore attack had goal written all over it. A mistimed effort could have seen a penalty easily awarded.

  • 10'

    Beirne adds his second point to cut the deficit in half as he pounces on a loose ball, powers past Niall McGovern and slots the ball over the bar from just inside the 45 metre line.

  • 8'

    A foul by Shane Quinn hands Luke Murphy a simple scoreable free for Sean O'Heslins and he makes no mistake from the advanced free.

  • 7'

    Both defences are making life difficult for the forwards here and Ballinamore keeper Darren Maxwell shows a save pair of hands as Jordan Reynolds half blocked effort drops just short of a score.

  • 6'

    Shane Moran puts Ballinamore back in front with a straight forward finish from twenty yards after a great piece of work to get free.

  • 5'

    Mohill talisman Keith Beirne opens his account with a fine score on the run from the right hand side of the large pitch here in Carrick on Shannon.

  • 3'

    Mohill's Jordan Reynolds hits Mohill's first point from distance and both sides have set a blistering pace so far.

  • 1'

    Michael McKiernan fields the resulting kickout and feeds Paddy Connaughton who see his effort on goal always rising to add a second point, still in the first minute of the game. Great start for Ceannaboe.

  • 1'

    Luke Murphy gets us up and running with a pointed free from the first attack as Niall McGovern is fouled for Ballinamore.

  • Match Referee Gareth Foley will take charge of his first senior decider as he get's us underway here in Avant Money Pairc Sean MacDiarmada

  • You're welcome to the 2021 Leitrim Senior Football Championship final between Leitrim kingpins Ballinamore Sean O'Heslins and the defending champions Mohill. Ballinamore may have the most titles, 20, of any club in the county but it's been 31 years since their last victory in 1990 having lost three finals in that period, the most recent of which was 2019 against Glencar Manorhamilton. Mohill are looking for their second consecutive win and their fourth since 2015.

Past Meetings

(Round 2)
0-17 1-17
Leitrim SFC
Pairc Shean Ui Heislin

(Round 2)
1-12 0-11
Pairc Shean Ui Heislin

(Round 1)
0-15 0-16
Leitrim SFC
Philip McGuinness Park

(Round 7)
Philip McGuinness Park


Pairc Sean MacDiarmada
Avant Money Páirc Seán Mac Diarmada, Carrick on Shannon, Co. Leitrim, N41 XE89, Ireland

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