Waterford Crystal Cup Hurling Q-Final – Cork 3-17 UCC 1-22

Nash nicks winner as Cork plan for future

by Diarmuid O’Flynn for the Irish Examiner newspaper

Monday, January 24, 2011

Cork 3-17 UCC 1-22 (aet)

SUBSTITUTE KEEPER Anthony Nash was the hero for Cork in this Waterford Crystal senior hurling quarter-final in semi-frozen Páirc Uí Rinn yesterday, a rifled penalty goal in injury-time of extra-time giving them a one-point victory in a highly entertaining match. This was largely a Cork development team, several teenagers in the starting 15, a host of players making their debut, while over half the UCC team were also from Cork — ideal circumstances for Cork manager Denis Walsh. Several players caught his eye, on both teams, prompting Walsh to declare: “William Egan played well for UCC, as did James Nagle when he came back on, and Paul Haughney in extra-time. We had a few players who played well for us — Graham Callanan (midfield) was dominant after a shaky start, which was very encouraging. Conor Lehane missed a few frees but his response told us something, he showed well then in general play, and that’s very important.”

When asked how many of the team from yesterday would be there come league action next month, Walsh said: “We’ll be trying to decide the panel at the end of January, which is what we did last year — we think we have two or three fellas from this squad today who will make that panel.” Only two or three? “Yes, unless you have a better calculator than us! We can only have a panel of 26; we had 34 last year, so we’ve had to cut eight already, and if we want to bring in another three now that means we have to cut three more.”

What they found out yesterday was that there will be a real battle for the number seven jersey left vacant with the surprise cut of Seán Óg Ó hAilpín at the end of last season, with both William Egan (UCC) and Ray Ryan (Cork) impressing at left-half-back for their respective sides. Additionally, Graham Callanan used his power to great effect in midfield, while alongside him Brian Lawton showed good qualities in the air. Up front, young Conor Lehane, though inconsistent from placed balls, showed some superb touches in general play, while the pace and precision of corner-forward Brian Hartnett were to the fore for his two goals. In the other corner, an equally light and young Jamie Coughlan showed well.

The game itself was pretty evenly balanced. UCC started well, were four points to two ahead after 13 minutes; five minutes later it was Cork in front, 1-5 to 0-4, the speedy Hartnett with the goal, Lehane with the three points. Next it was UCC’s turn, a run of 1-6 without reply (centre-forward Kevin Keehan with the goal) putting them in good shape, helping them to a 1-11 to 1-6 half-time lead. The second-half was dominated by Cork, Hartnett’s second goal helping them to a two-point lead with only minutes remaining, yet it took a long-range Jamie Coughlan free for Cork to take the game to extra-time. For most of the additional period it looked like the game was heading the way of UCC until Nash stepped forward to convert what was, in truth, a very softly-awarded penalty.

Scorers for Cork: B Hartnett 2-0, J Coughlan 0-7 (0-3 frees, 0-2 65s), C Lehane 0-6 (0-4 frees), A Nash 1-0 (pen), G Callanan, B Lawton, B Cooper, J Wall, 0-1 each.

Scorers for UCC: K Keehan 1-3 (0-3 frees), P Haughney 0-5 (0-1 free), D Brosnan 0-4, S Bourke 0-4 (0-2 frees), G Mulcahy 0-2, D Kearney, J Cassin, W Egan (free), M Carroll, 0-1 each.

CORK: M Coleman; P O’Leary, C Fogarty, S Murphy; C Joyce, M Ellis, R Ryan; G Callanan, B Lawton; T Murray, B Cooper, C Lehane; J Coughlan, S Harnedy, B Hartnett.

Subs: A Nash for Coleman (35), C McCarthy for Murray (45), E Murphy for Harnedy (45), M Cussen for Hartnett (57), B Johnson for Lawton (62).

Extra-time: G Moylan for O’Leary (80); J Wall for Lehane (80); P O’Mahony for Joyce (80).

UCC: L O’Flynn (Cork); W Kearney (Cork), P O’Loughlin (Limerick), C O’Sullivan (capt. Cork)); P Mahony (Waterford), J Nagle (Cork), W Egan (Cork); D Kearney (Cork), B O’Sullivan (Limerick); S Bourke (Tipperary), K Keehan (Galway), D Brosnan (Cork); P Haughney (Cork), J Cassin (Kilkenny), G Mulcahy (Limerick).

Subs: D O’Sullivan (Waterford) for Nagle (35), D Roche (Cork) for D Kearney (35), T Ryan (Waterford) for Haughney 49), M Carroll (Cork) for Keehan (55), S O’Farrell (Cork) for B O’Sullivan (61).

Extra-time: D Kearney (Cork), B Collins (Cork), B Cleary (Limerick), T Geaney (Cork), J Nagle (Cork) and P Haughney (Cork) started in place of W Kearney, C O’Sullivan, P Mahony, W Egan, J Cassin and S Burke; Cassin for Brosnan (80).

Referee: P Casey (Waterford)