Dundalk and Shamrock Rovers off to a winning start

Ciaran Kilduff was the man of the hour for Dundalk

Dundalk and Shamrock Rovers off to a winning start

Credit ©INPHO/Gary Carr

Bray Wanderers 1-3 Dundalk

Reigning champions Dundalk got their tilte defence off to a winning start, with Ciaran Kilduff netting twice at the Carlsisle Grounds.

Kilduff struck early to put the Lilywhites in the driving seat after five minutes before doubling his tally in the 27th minutes. 

The two goal cushion lasted a matter of minutes after Dean Kelly responded almost immediately to leave the score 2-1 at the interval. 

Bray were outplayed for most of the game and their frustrations were compounded when Curtis Murphy was sent off 10 minutes from time, before Ronan Finn smashed home a third one minute later. 

Sligo Rover 0-2 Shamrock Rovers

In the night's other game, Shamrock Rovers dismissed a spirited nine man Sligo Rovers side at the Showgrounds thanks to goals from Brandon Miele and Danny North. 

In a tempered affair, eight players saw yellow with two red cards flashed in the second half. 

Miele gave Rovers the lead prior to the break with a brilliantly taken free kick before Kieran Sadlier was shown red on 45 minutes for a stamp on Killian Brennan. 

The Bit O'Red tried to get themselves back into in the second half but another red card to Craig Roddan made that task almost impossible. 

Rovers finally got a second when North netted in injury time to secure an opening round win for the Tallaght side.