However the Thoroughbreds should have scored as early as the second minute, when David Jackson shot over the bar following excellent interplay between himself and Darren O’Brien. Following this, Shels came more into the game and should have been at least three up after 24 minutes when striker Anto Flood missed two chances and had a goal ruled out for offside.
Kildare were struggling to control the Shels attacks, with Dave McAllister tormenting them, with the visitors picking up four yellow cards in their attempts to contain him. In the 33rd minute, David Cassidy was replaced by Mark O’Brien after picking up a knock following a heavy challenge. In the 44th minute, Anto Flood should have got the lead goal when in on goal only to shoot straight at the keeper. As the teams left the park at half time, Kildare manager, Joey Sommerville, had a heated exchange with the match officials.
Straight from the restart, Shels piled on the pressure, playing into the Drumcondra end. Dave McAllister, on the right wing, drove in an inch perfect cross but none of the three Shels players in the box could connect. The home fans were somewhat silenced as Kildare came more and more into the game and carved out a few good chances. Shels manager Dermot Keely shocked the home crowd on the 58th minute by replacing both strikers, Hynes and Flood, with Derek Doyle and Tony Griffiths. With Doyle playing on the left wing and Richie Baker pushing on into attack.
Robbie Hedderman picked up a yellow card in the 64th minute when he took down ex-Red Philip Hughes, after Kildare broke up a Shels attack in midfield and countered. The resulting free kick was taken by David Jackson and curled beautifully around the red wall from 25 yards out, only to be matched by an excellent, full stretch save by Dean Delaney.
Shelbourne finally broke the deadline in the 73rd minute. Richie Baker whipped in a cross from in front of the Riverside Stand which was met by Dave McAllister’s head and sent into the net like a missile.
Following this, Shels, as in recent weeks, sat back and allowed Kildare to come at them with the hope of catching them on the break. In the 86th minute, Shels player Mark O’Brien broke quickly and rounded the keeper only to send his shot into the side netting. A minute later Shels wrapped up the points, when Dave Crawley’s free kick was driven into the area and new signing Tony Griffiths got the slightest of touches with his head to ensure the ball settled in the net, scoring his first goal for the Reds.
Referee Grant allowed 4 minutes of stoppage time but Kildare were unable to come up with anything in the last few minutes of the second series of matches.
Shelbourne: Delaney, Quigley, Synnott, Hedderman, Crawley, McAllister, McGill, Cassidy, Hynes, A. Flood, Baker
Subs: M. O’Brien, Doyle, J. Flood, Griffiths, Whelan
Kildare County: Kelly, Purcell, Long, Laurence, Tiernan, O'Brien, Byrne, Jackson, Doran, Hughes, Brady
Subs: Farrell, Lee, O'Riordan, Daly, Bowers
Man of the Match: Dave McAllister