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More honours are up for grabs on Saturday, when Croke Park will play host to the Bord na Móna Walsh Cup Hurling Final between Dublin and Kilkenny at 5pm.
At St. Conleth’s Park, Newbridge last Sunday, Jason Ryan steered Kildare to his first piece of silverware as the Lilywhites Senior Football manager, following their 1-10 to 0-9 Bord na Móna O’Byrne Cup win over Meath.
With both sides unbeaten heading into this decider, a keen encounter was expected, and an early Thomas Moolick goal had Kildare ahead for most of the opening half.
Meath worked hard to get back into contention, and with Stephen Bray, Eamon Wallace and Michael Newman among their scorers, they drew level approaching the break.
However, an injury-time Darroch Mulhall point handed Kildare a 1-4 to 0-6 lead at the break.
The Lilywhites wouldn’t relinquish their lead in the second half, despite Meath’s best efforts.
Points from Bord na Móna/TG4 Man of the Match Paul Cribbin and Mulhall opened up a goal advantage.
Meath kept in touch thanks to the efforts of Newman, but Kildare took some good scores, with Mulhall and Sean Hurley on target to take a 1-9 to 0-8 lead in the 58th minute.
Goal efforts from Newman and Paddy Gilsenan went amiss for the Royals, who also lost midfielder Andrew Tormey on a black card nine minutes from the end.
After the game Kildare captain Eoghan O’Flaherty received the Bord na Móna O’Byrne Cup in the presence of new Leinster GAA Chairman John Horan and Bord na Móna’s Gerry O’Hagan.
David English scored six points for Carlow as they claimed the Bord na Móna Walsh Shield title for the first time, following a 1-16 to 1-7 win over Westmeath at Dr Cullen Park.
English led by example for the hosts, in a game that saw them fall behind early on thanks to an Eoin Price goal for the visitors.
Carlow worked hard with an Andrew Gaul goal helping to swing this game in their favour, as they moved 1-8 to 1-1 ahead after 15 minutes.
Westmeath would only score one more point before the interval, with Shane Kavanagh registering Carlow’s final score of the half, as they led 1-13 to 1-2 at the break.
Scores were at a premium on the restart, and although Carlow only scored three second half points, the hosts had done enough to take victory.
Dublin and Kilkenny booked their place in Saturday’s Bord na Móna Walsh Cup final at Croke Park, after semi-final wins over Wexford and Galway respectively on Sunday.
Paul Ryan scored 1-7 for Dublin, in their slender 1-15 to 1-14 win over Wexford in Gorey.
Wexford began brightly thanks to a Rhys Clarke goal, with the hosts leading by 1-11 to 0-10 at half-time.
Dublin cut the gap on the restart thanks to the efforts of Conal Keaney and Ryan, with the latter registering his sides only goal in third quarter, to hand the visitors the lead.
Wexford were reduced to 14 men in the 57th minute, after losing Richie Kehoe on a second yellow card, with Ryan impressive from place balls in the closing quarter to deliver victory.
Henry Shefflin marked his return to action for 2014, with a haul of 13 points, as Kilkenny claimed a 1-24 to 0-15 win over Galway in front of a large crowd at Freshford.
Kilkenny began brightly thanks to a Colin Fennelly goal, but with Niall Burke and Niall Healy strong for Galway, the visitors moved into a 0-12 to 1-5 interval lead.
Brian Cody’s charges firmly turned this game around on the restart, with Shefflin impressive from dead-balls, while Fennelly, John Joe Farrell, Brian Hogan and Eoin Larkin were also among their scorers in the second period.