All-Ireland Football qualifiers: Tipperary 0-10 0-8 Antrim

Tipperary's Alan Campbell challenges James Loughrey

Antrim exited from the All-Ireland Football Championship in disappointing fashion as they were edged out by Tipperary in the third-round qualifier.

Tipperary bossed the game early on as three Alan Maloney points helped them take a 0-5 to 0-1 lead.

Antrim cut the margin to 0-6 to 0-4 at the break but while the Saffrons then drew level, they could not move ahead.

Tipp hit two points to move 0-10 to 0-8 ahead but Antrim's Michael McCann missed a glorious late goal chance.

After their surprise win over Galway last weekend, the Saffrons looked to have a possible route to an All-Ireland quarter-final after being drawn against Tipp.

However, Antrim suffered a blow in midweek when captain Aodhan Gallagher was forced to pull out of the squad for personal reasons.

His replacement Simon McDonagh did well in midfield but perhaps the key factor for the Saffrons was Paddy Cunningham's absence as Tomas McCann missed a couple of frees from the right-hand side of the field.

Antrim wasted a couple of early scoring chances and were made to pay as Tipp hit the opening four points with the impressive Maloney on target three times.

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Bradley says Tipp deserved win

The Saffrons' first score didn't come until the 18th minute as Tomas McCann pointed.

With Micheal Magill not able to start because of injury, the Antrim full-forward lacked a physical presence in the first half with his replacement Kevin Brady struggling to win a series of high balls hoofed into the Tipperary square.

Antrim fought back before the break as two James Loughrey points cut Tipperary's lead to 0-6 to 0-4.

The Saffrons appeared to have gained the momentum as points from Tomas McCann and Brady levelled the contest by the 45th minute.

Tipperary led twice again only to have their advantage pegged back on both occasions and the contest remained deadlocked at 0-8 to 0-8.

The home side kicked a succession of wides as they weren't able to turn their superiority into scores before Brian Mulvihill restored their advantage in the 55th minute.

Tipperary continued to dominate and Maloney's sixth score of the day in the 68th minute extended their lead to two.

The Saffrons could have stolen victory in injury-time as Michael McCann won a long punt but, instead of carrying the ball on, he let fly from 20 yards and was inches the wrong side of the post.

Saturday's All-Ireland Football Qualifiers Results

Tipperary 0-10 0-8 Antrim

Kerry 1-16 1-6 Tyrone

Leitrim 1-11 1-13 Laois

Kildare 0-19 0-12 Limerick [aet]

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