Date: 7:45 p.m. June 10, 2011
Venue: The UCD Bowl
It was an even opening quarter to this game. Chances were few and far between. The closest anyone came to scoring in the opening period was in the 7th minute. Rovers striker Karl Shepard headed Billy Dennehy's corner just over the bar.
UCD looked to pass the ball around in midfield. Both Paul Corry and Paul O'Conor had a lot of possession and looked to create some openings. They came close to taking the lead in the 31st minute. O'Conor passed to right-back Sean Harding. Harding's fine right foot shot was just too high.
Rovers took the lead just two minutes later. Billy Dennehy swung in a corner from the right. There was a scramble in the UCD area. Ger Barron made an excellent save from Dan Murray's header but Gary Twigg was first to react to head in the rebound to give Rovers the lead.
The home team nearly equalized a minute later. From a well worked free kick, Dean Marshall crossed for captain Michael Leahy. Leahy's effort hit the post after a goalmouth scramble.
Rovers and Twigg made UCD pay for this miss in the 41st minute. Ronan Finn cut in from the right hand side and picked out Rovers' number nine who finished clinically past Barron to make it 2-0 to the Hoops. Worse was to follow just two minutes later for UCD. Michael Leahy was sent off for taking down Billy Dennehy who was approaching the home team's goal.
The visitors went 3-0 up in the 51st minute. Gary McCabe received possession on the right hand side. He got the better of Ciaran Nangle and crossed perfectly for Karl Sheppard who headed home.
UCD wasted a golden opportunity to pull one back not long after. Substitute Stephen Doyle broke on the counter attack. He should have crossed for the unmarked Graham Rusk but instead hit a poor effort over the top.
Rovers went four up in the 77th minute. McCabe crossed. UCD failed to clear the danger. Substitute Ciaran Kilduff pulled it back for Billy Dennehy. Dennehy's deflected shot beat Ger Barron and went into the net.
Goal number five arrived after Dennehy crossed from the left for Kilduff who headed past Barron. The home fans were given something to cheer about a minute later. Darren Meenan curled in a fine shot from the left which beat Alan Mannus in the Rovers goal.
However Michael O'Neill's team were to have the last word in the very last minute. Pat Sullivan pulled it back for Karl Sheppard. Sheppard's shot was saved by Ger Barron. However Ciaran Kilduff was on hand once again to make it 6-1 from close range.
Rovers play Derry on Monday night. On this form it is hard to see anything else than a home win. They could afford to take off Gary Twigg and Ronan Finn and still run out easy winners. With the squad they have it will be very difficult for anyone to stop them in the league race.
UCD: Ger Barron, Sean Harding, Ciaran Nangle, David O'Connor, Michael Leahy (captain), Paul Corry, Dean Marshall (Robbie Creevy 67), Paul O'Conor, Samir Belhout (Stephen Doyle 67), Darren Meenan, Sean Russell (Graham Rusk, 46).
Subs Not Used: Daniel Ledwith, Robbie Benson, Mark McGinley, Cillian Morrison.
Sent off: Michel Leahy (43).
Shamrock Rovers: Alan Mannus, Pat Sullivan, Craig Sives, Dan Murray (captain), Conor McCormack, Gary McCabe, Chris Turner (Stephen O'Donnell 45), Ronan Finn (Stephen Rice 60), Billy Dennehy, Gary Twigg (Ciaran Kilduff 69), Karl Sheppard.
Subs not used: Dean Kelly, Ryan Thompson, Ken Oman, Gary O'Neill.
Sent off: None
Referee: Graham Kelly
Extratime.ie Man of the Match: Gary McCabe (Shamrock Rovers)