Allianz Football League Division 3 – Sligo 1-16 Tipperary 0-7

Evans calls time as Tipp relegated

Sligo 1-16 Tipperary 0-07

By Jackie Cahill for the Irish Examiner newspaper

John Evans admitted last night that a disappointing run of results was a major factor in his decision to step down as Tipperary boss. Evans resigned after Tipperary were relegated to Allianz Football League Division Four following a 0-7 to 1-16 defeat against Sligo at Markievicz Park yesterday. Tipp have lost all five of their Division 3 fixtures this year and Evans was also in charge of the U21 team beaten by Kerry in the Munster championship. Evans was reluctant to go into detail about his decision but admitted that the recent losing streak has had an impact.

He said: “Maybe that’s part of it. I’ve all my life been a winner. Somebody did some research on me recently and I’ve contested something like 80 finals. It’s hard for me to take defeat after defeat. I struggle to countenance them, entertain them or put up with them.” Evans added: “Today is just a day for an announcement. I’m leaving Tipperary having made some great friends. It’s not a day for anything else other than to say thank you to everybody for their cooperation.”

Evans took charge in November 2007 and oversaw successive promotions from Division 4 to Division 2 in 2008 and 2009. But Tipp will be playing Division 4 football in 2013 and much of the good work achieved in recent years appears to have been undone. Evans, however, has achieved much during his time with Tipperary and masterminded the county’s very first Munster U21 football championship success in 2010. And last year, he was involved on the coaching team when the minors enjoyed a fairytale season that culminated with All-Ireland glory at Croke Park. Evans, who guided Laune Rangers to All-Ireland club glory in 1996, was appointed Director of Football for Tipperary in 2010 but GAA rules meant that he could not hold that position while also fulfilling the role of senior team boss.

Evans reflected: “Look at the good times, the way we’ve conducted ourselves and what we have won. It’s easy to be sad at this time but look at the rejuvenation of Tipperary. The thing that sticks in my mind will be the sight of people in tears when we got promoted from Division 4. And we beat Down in the 2009 Division 3 final, playing with exuberance, style and resilience. We were defiant and proved that a weaker county can defeat a strong powerful county like Down. We had a narrow miss in 2009 against Cork in the Munster U21 championship but we came back and did it properly against Kerry, in Kerry, the following year. There was also an All-Ireland success for Clonmel High School and the highs of Munster and All-Ireland titles with the Tipp minors last year. So while there could be sadness today, the whole journey has been exhilarating. And it showed what can be done with proper preparation and good management. The lads were quite emotional after the game. The players gave some lovely speeches and there were lots of hugs and handshakes. I think I’ve left a good infrastructure.”

The Tipperary board released a statement last night, thanking Evans for his contribution and that the process of finding a successor will now begin. 1-10 of Sligo’s total came in the second half when, playing with the breeze, they punished a Tipperary side that managed just one solitary second-half score. Six unanswered points steadied Sligo and when Colm McGee blasted home the game’s only goal after 57 minutes — putting Sligo 1-13 to 0-7 ahead — the outcome was confirmed.

Scorers for Sligo: C McGee 1-2; S Coen 0-4, 1f; A Marren 0-4, 3f; T Taylor 0-2; A Costello 0-2; M Breheny 0-2.

Scorers for Tipperary: P Austin 0-3, 3f; S Ryan 0-1; B O’Brien 0-1; H Coghlan 0-1; R Costigan 0-1.

SLIGO: P Greene, N Ewing, J Martyn, R Donovan, C Harrison, M Quinn, J Davey, T Taylor, S McManus, A Costello, P Hughes, D Rooney, C McGee, A Marren, S Coen.

Subs: M Breheny for D Rooney, (28); P McGovern for N Ewing, (52); B Egan for P Hughes, (59); N McGuire for M Quinn, (63).

TIPPERARY: P Fitzgerald, A Morrissey, L Egan, C McDonald, R Kiely, T Ryan, P Codd, E Ryan, D Heffernan, R Costigan, P Acheson, H Coghlan, B O’Brien, P Austin, S Ryan.

Subs: D Leaghy for E Ryan, (23); M Quinlivan for S Ryan, (41); C Sweeney for B O’Brien; J Ryan for A Morrissey, (59); A Campbell for T Ryan, (70).

Referee: Raymond McBrien (Leitrim)

Allianz Football League Division 4 – Wicklow 2-13 Limerick 0-14

Hannon star of the show as Wicklow see off Limerick

Wicklow 2-13 Limerick 0-14

By Mark Kennedy for the Irish Examiner newspaper

Wicklow had a man of the match performance from Tony Hannon as he scored some spectacular points and a peach of a goal after 25 minutes and went in at the break leading 1-5 to 0-6. Limerick were in more trouble ten minutes into the second half when Leighton Glynn scored a goal. Limerick were reduced to 14 men after corner-back Lorcan Dwyer got a straight red card, while just before the end Wicklow’s Peadar Burke was dismissed after picking up a second yellow card.

Scorers for Wicklow: T Hannon 1-4 (2fs), L Glynn 1-3, S Furlong 0-5 (1f), Rory Finn 0-1.

Scorers for Limerick: I Ryan 0-7fs, B Scanlon 0-2fs, J O’Meara, G Collins, S Lavin, J Mullane, J Cooke 0-1 each.

WICKLOW: J Flynn; C Hyland, A McLoughlin, A Byrne; S Kelly, M McLoughlin, D Healy; J Stafford, R Finn; D Hayden, P Burke, L Glynn; P Earls, S Furlong, T Hannon.

Subs: D O’Sullivan for P Earls, P Dalton for T Hannon.

LIMERICK: B Scanlon; E Barry, S Lavin, L O’Dwyer; J Riordan, S Lucey, B Fitzpatrick; J Galvin, P Kinnerk; S O’Carroll, G O’Connell, P Ranahan; G Collins, J O’Meara, I Ryan.

Subs: C Coady for B Fitzpatrick, J Mullane for G O’Connell, P Browne for G Collins, S Carroll for P Kinnerk.

Referee: F Barry (Kildare)

Allianz Hurling League Division 1A – Galway 2-17 Cork 2-13

Burke breaks Cork resolve

Cork 2-13 Galway 2-17

By Fintan O’Toole for the Irish Examiner newspaper

AS the dying embers were reached in this Division 1A hurling league encounter in Páirc Uí Chaoimh yesterday, the theme of draws in Anthony Cunningham’s weekend looked like continuing. On Saturday in Croke Park his Garrycastle charges could not be separated from Crossmaglen Rangers in the All-Ireland Club football decider and a share of the points between Galway and Cork looked on the cards, as the score stood at 2-13 to 1-16 in the closing moments.

But a late show by his precocious young attacker Niall Burke ensured Cunningham’s weekend of sporting endeavours concluded on a joyous note. A fine team move involving David Burke and Joseph Cooney released the Oranmore-Maree player in the 69th minute, and as the ball hopped before him, he connected to whip a sublime strike to the roof of the net. Burke applied the finishing touches when lofting over a point from the wing in injury-time and Galway were left to reflect on a four-point victory that had looked improbable when they trailed by eight points during the first-half.

“It was a great finish, just clipping it first time and probably reminiscent of Jimmy Barry-Murphy’s goals here in former times,” was Cunningham’s description of that late goal. The manner of the Tribesmen’s second-half revival pleased him greatly.  “We’d very poor shooting early on. There were 17 chances created in the first-half and we only converted seven. There was a bit of naivety maybe after last weekend when we played well with a lot of younger guys thinking they just had to turn up today. But there’s good spirit here. We told the guys at half-time we were going to have to take the game to Cork and stop standing off them.”

Cork boss Jimmy Barry-Murphy was left scratching his head at the final whistle. All the portents in the first-half suggested they were set to maintain their recent winning streak since he assumed the Rebel managerial reins once more. Shane O’Neill, John Gardiner and Sean Óg Ó hAilpín were all hurling with authority while Conor Lehane continued his top-class marksmanship, the Midleton youngster ending up with 0-5 from play. When Cathal Naughton found the net with aplomb in the 28th minute, after lovely approach work from Patrick Cronin and Paudie O’Sullivan, Cork had stormed 1-7 to 0-2 clear. Yet, at the end, they had nothing to show for their afternoon’s work.

“We were very pleased with our first-half display but for some reason we seemed to lose that level of intensity,” reasoned Barry-Murphy afterwards. “Eight points is a big lead to lose and it was a big turnaround when we ended up losing by four. We’ll have to look at it but, overall, there were some positives with the performance. I thought Damien Cahalane was outstanding at full-back in his first game. Brian Murphy and Shane O’Neill were excellent as well. We were lucky maybe to win in Croke Park last week and there are lessons to be learned now.”

There were signs Cunningham has imbued a sense of resilience in his Galway team as they overhauled Cork in the second-half. Eight of the U21 side he guided to All-Ireland glory last September were in the starting line-up while two more were sprung from the bench. They are starting to prosper on the senior stage and it was Galway’s scoring spree before the interval that proved crucial in bridging the gap.  They struck five points after the concession of that goal to Naughton to trail 1-9 to 0-7 at the interval. Substitute Davy Glennon sparkled when introduced, David Collins anchored their challenge at the back while David and Niall Burke, Damien Hayes and Andy Smith helped correct the woeful shooting that had blighted their first-half performance.

Cork could never manage to regain their first-half form. They only managed four points in the second-half with O’Sullivan the only player other than Lehane to raise a white flag. Cork were rattled when Damien Hayes bundled to the net in the 53rd minute, after Joseph Cooney had managed to block a Donal Óg Cusack clearance, but responded splendidly three minutes later when O’Sullivan lobbed a brilliantly weighted cross to Lorcan McLoughlin who finished calmly past James Skehill.

From there to the finish a hitherto uninspiring game was ignited and there was fine entertainment for the 12,821 spectators in the last quarter. The sides were level on three occasions and it was only Burke’s defining scoring salvo that saw the match swerve off that course of equanimity.  “We were lucky in the finish, I thought a draw would probably have been a fair result, but we’ll take the win,” admitted Cunningham. “We’ve a young team, we need to be patient with them and it’ll take time. But they’re working hard and we’re happy with them.”

Scorers for Galway: N Burke 1-10 (0-7f), D Hayes 1-1, A Smith, D Burke 0-2 each, D Glennon 0-1.

Scorers for Cork: P Horgan 0-6 (0-6f), C Lehane 0-5, C Naughton, L McLoughlin 1-0 each, P O’Sullivan, J Coughlan 0-1 each.

Subs for Galway: C Donnellan for Cooney (25), D Glennon for Regan (25), J Cooney for Tannian (49), T Haran for Hayes (67).

Subs for Cork: D Sweetnam for Naughton (56), M O’Sullivan for Horgan (62), N McCarthy for Kenny (67).

Referee: James Owens (Wexford)

Allianz Football League Division 4 – Fermanagh 0-15 Waterford 0-12

Ward and Quigley turn on the style as Fermanagh remain top

Waterford 0-12 Fermanagh 0-15

By John Murphy for the Irish Examiner newspaper

A late flurry of scores gave Fermanagh a flattering victory over Waterford to maintain their unbeaten Division 4 league record at Fraher Field, Dungarvan, yesterday. Fermanagh keeper Ronan Gallagher twice denied Mark Ferncombe and Sean Fleming in the first-half as the sides went in 0-6 each at the half-time break. The Ulster side were in front within seconds of the restart when Eoin Donnelly landed a great point but the home side edged two clear by the 50th minute before Fermanagh took over with Seamas Quigley and Paul Ward impressing.

Scorers for Fermanagh: S Quigley (3fs, 2 45s), P Ward (1f) 0-5 each, S McCabe 0-2, E Donnelly, E Maguire, R Jones 0-1 each.

Scorers for Waterford: G Hurney 0-5 (3fs), S Ahearne 0-3 (2fs), M Ferncombe 0-2, J Veale, K Connery 0-1 each.

FERMANAGH: R Gallagher; N Bogue, B Owens, N McGovern; C Quigley, B Mulrone, D Kelly; R Jones, E Donnelly; D Keenan, B Óg Maguire, B Cox; P Ward, S Quigley, S McCabe.

Subs: M Little for Kelly (ht), E Maguire for B Og Maguire (60), T Corrigan for Ward (66), M Jones for Murone (69).

WATERFORD: K Cotter; M O’Gorman T O’Gorman, K Connery; T Grey, E Walsh, C Phelan; S Ahearne, S O’Hare; W Hennessy, P Hurney, C O’Keeffe; M Ferncombe, G Hurney, S Fleming.

Subs: J Veale for Fleming (28), L Ó Lionáin for Phelan (56).

Referee: M Rock (Clare)

Allianz Football League Division 4 – Clare 1-12 Leitrim 0-9

McGrath goal boost as Clare coast past one-dimensional Leitrim

Clare 1-12 Leitrim 0-09

By Gerry Quinn for the Irish Examiner newspaper

Clare grabbed their fourth win in Division 4 when they had six points to spare over Leitrim in Cusack Park yesterday. Playing with the breeze, the Banner goaled in the sixth minute through Shane McGrath and enjoyed a 1-8 to 0-5 lead at the interval. The visitors were too reliant on the boot of James Glancy, who kicked all but one of their scores before the break, including a penalty sent over the bar. Scores by McGrath, Rory Donnelly and Alan Clohessy kept Clare in command after the change of ends.

Scorers for Clare: S McGrath 1-3; D Tubridy (3f), R Donnelly 0-3 each; A Clohessy 0-2, J Dowling 0-1.

Scorers for Leitrim: J Glancy 0-5 (3f, 1pen), W McKeon, R Lowe, D Gilhooley, C Egan (1 45) 0-1 each.

CLARE: Joe Hayes; B Hartnett, S McNeilis, L Healy; M McMahon, Gordon Kelly, John Hayes; G Brennan, G Quinlan; Graham Kelly, S McGrath, A Clohessy; R Donnelly, D Tubridy, J Dowling.

Subs: S Brennan for Graham Kelly (ht), T Ryan for Dowling (46), D Russell for Quinlan (56), S Haugh for Donnelly (65), S Tierney for Clohessy (67).

LEITRIM: C McCrann; A Wynne, C Egan, P Maguire; D Beck, C Sheridan, W McKeon; D Sweeney, D Lowe; P Brennan, R Lowe, G Hickey; R Cox, J Glancy, A Croal.

Subs: D Gilhooley for Croal (51), P McGowan for D Lowe (51), T Bernie for Hickey (63).

Referee: D O’Mahoney (Tipperary)

Allianz Hurling League Division 2A – Kerry 2-22 Wicklow 1-12

Solid Brick stars as Kerry off the mark

Kerry 2-22 Wicklow 1-12

By Mark Kennedy for the Irish Examiner newspaper

Kerry put their troubles behind them yesterday when they travelled to Aughrim to pick up the first points of the league. The Kingdom players did not appear to be unsettled by the row that raged in the county all week following manager John Meyler’s decision to drop three of the four Boyle brothers. In a tight first quarter, Paddy Farrell and Shane Nolan swapped goals but Kerry’s crispness came to the fore and in corner-forward Shane Brick, they had a match winner. Wicklow were only four points adrift, 1-10 to 1-6 at the break, but Kerry pulled away in the second half and Shane Nolan added a second goal to his three points.

Scorers for Kerry: S Brick 0-10 (4fs, 2 65s), S Nolan 2-3, J Flaherty 0-3, D Dineen 0-2, A O’Connor, C Harty, D O’Connell, PJ Connolly 0-1 each.

Scorers for Wicklow: A O’Brien 0-4fs, J O’Neill 0-3 (2fs), P Farrell 1-0, T Doyle, E Glynn 0-2 each, C Moorehouse 0-1.

KERRY: B Rochford; R Horgan, P Costello, B Murphy; A O’Connor, M Lynch, J Griffin; W O’Dwyer, D O’Connell; C Harty, G O’Brien, D Dineen; S Brick, A Boyle, S Nolan.

Subs: P Connolly for G O’Brien, J Flaherty for C Harty, J Casey for M Lynch, D Wallace for A O’Connor, J Fitzgerald for R Horgan.

WICKLOW: J Murphy; Jim Connors, G Keogh, E Dunne; T Doyle, B Cuddihy, G Bermingham; E Kearns, R Keddy; John Connors, S Kelly, P Farrell; E Glynn, J O’Neill, A O’Brien.

Subs: C Moorehouse for J O’Neill, W O’Gorman for P Farrell, E O’Neill for E Dunne, P Gahan for R Keddy.

Referee: P Murphy (Carlow)

Allianz Football League Division 1 – Kerry 0-13 Cork 0-11

Cork 0-11 Kerry 0-13

Sunday, 18 March 2012 18:23

Report from the web site

League leaders Kerry recorded their fourth win of the Allianz Football League Division 1 campaign as they defeated great rivals and second in the table Cork in front of 12,800 fans at Pàirc Uì Chaoimh. The Kingdom led by 0-8 to 0-2 at the break, with in the end Declan O’Sullivan and Bryan Sheehan kicking some fine points. Cork improved after the break, with five Donnacha O’Connor frees keeping them in touch.

Before the throw in, Kerry led the league champions by one point, having recorded victories over Dublin and Down on the road and a home win over Donegal the previous weekend. Kingdom manager Jack O’Connor made just one enforced change to his side, with Aidan O’Mahony coming in at ful- back for the injured Daniel Bohane.

Kieran Donaghy, whose father Oliver died on Friday, started in his usual number 14 shirt, after the selectors left the decision to play or not up to himself. He played a huge part in a Kerry forward line that roamed as they liked with Donaghy and Paul Galvin often helping out their defence, which caused problem for their markers.

Kerry opened the scoring with a point from midfielder Anthony Maher and despite a quick reply from a Donnacha O’Connor free, Kerry would dominate the first half and led by six at the break. Conor Counihan’s side had a good away win in Laois as well as defeating Down on home soil, and drawing with Armagh away before losing in Donegal.

Cork did improve in the second half and three points in a row from Mark Collins, Graham Canty and Donnacha O’Connor’s third free, reduced the arrears to a goal. Sheehan, Declan O’Sullivan and Paul Galvin, who earlier picked up a yellow card all added points to leave the Kingdom cruising again. O’Connor frees kept Cork in the match with Fintan Goold also on the score sheet, with late points, but the nearest Cork came to the winners was at the end, when corner back Eoin Cotter, up in attack, shot just over the crossbar, to leave two point between the sides at the full time whistle.

CORK: K O’Halloran; R Carey, M Shields, E Cotter (0-1); E Cadogan, G Canty(0-1)P Kissane; A O’Connor,P O’Neill; F Goold (0-1) M Collins, (0-1), C O’Neill, A Walsh(0-2), D O’Connor (0-5f).

Subs: P Kerrigan for O’Neill (48),N O’Leary for A O’Connor(51), Barry O’Driscoll for Kelly (66)

KERRY: B Kealy;M O’Sè,A O’Mahony,K Young;P Crowley, E Brosnan,B Maguire;A Maher(0-1),B Sheehan(0-4,0-3f);P Galvin(0-1), Declan O’Sullivan(0-5,0-2f);BJ Keane(0-1),K Donaghy(0-1),P Curtin.

Subs: T O Sè for Crowley(44), D O’Callaghan for Keane (65).

Referee: Maurice Deegan (Laois)


Kingdom in cruise control

Cork 0-11 Kerry 0-13

By John Fogarty for the Irish Examiner newspaper

It’s just as well Cork didn’t win this one — for Conor Counihan would have been at a loss to justify it. He didn’t have to, their late rally in front of the 12,821 Páirc Uí Chaoimh home crowd coming up short and finishing with Noel O’Leary’s desperate shot at goal ending up closer to the corner flag than Brendan Kealy’s net. Even if a dubious Barry John Keane point in the second half was among Kerry’s total, they were good for their victory and rarely looked troubled after building up a six-point lead at the break (0-8 to 0-2).

Cork had cut the gap to three points with six minutes to go. By that stage, a previously sterile game of football had come to life with substitute O’Leary renewing sparring acquaintances with Paul Galvin. But Kerry were hardly rattled, substitute Tomás Ó Sé bringing additional composure to a backline in mean form, especially Aidan O’Mahony and Marc Ó Sé. Up front, it was Declan O’Sullivan who gave Kerry the cutting edge, his weaving doing enough to set up Bryan Sheehan for their 68th-minute insurance point.

Injury-time scores from Donncha O’Connor from a free and Eoin Cotter whose shot rose just above Kealy’s crossbar kept the crowd interested but there was no killer punch. Graham Canty came closest to beating Kealy with a goal chance in both halves, his first in the 30th minute narrowly going wide while his second attempt five minutes from the end of normal time was snuffed out by the goalkeeper. Had either found the net, Cork would be waving their get out of jail card. Instead, Counihan was left to rue a disenchanting first 35 minutes. “Crazy, crazy, absolutely crazy first half,” Counihan said. “You wouldn’t deserve to win a game playing the way we played in the first half.”

But what was crazy? “It just wasn’t good enough, the lads know that themselves. There was a bit of a response in the second half, but you have to play for 70 minutes at this level or you don’t get a result. It was good to have the second-half performance but disappointing in the sense of knowing that if we could have done that in the first half, we would have given ourselves a good chance of getting a result.”

Counihan put the defeat down to simple, basic errors with players “maybe not taking on responsibility”. His forwards certainly struggled to retain possession and it was only in the 34th minute that Cork scored their first from play via Aidan Walsh. After a third win on the trot, Kerry are sitting pretty at the top of the table with a semi-final all but certain, with the remaining two games at home. Yesterday might have lacked a lot of cut and thrust but Jack O’Connor wasn’t too upset.

“Neither team was at championship pace. It’s only the month of March so we’re not going at full pelt. We also have four games in a row which is hard going. It’s tough on the bodies so overall I thought it was a good game. To try and qualify for the semi-finals was the aim because we’re trying out a share of new lads — we want them to sample as many games as possible at this level. We’re delighted to get through the game — it was a great experience for us.” O’Connor also took heart from the performance of Kieran Donaghy in trying circumstances following the death of his father Oliver in Omagh on Friday. “We left it up to himself,” said O’Connor about the player’s decision to line out. “He’s playing well at the moment. He took a personal decision and we wouldn’t stand in his way if he wanted to play the game.”

Donaghy’s 14th minute point to put Kerry 0-4 to 0-1 up turned out to be their third of six scores without reply as they started almost as convincingly as they did last summer’s Munster final against Cork. And just like in Killarney eight months ago, Declan O’Sullivan was the star, giving the returning Michael Shields a difficult time of it. Kerry’s conversion rate of eight from 12 was impressive and while they rarely troubled Ken O’Halloran for a goal it was no real slight on their attack. Cork, on the other hand, posted eight wides before half-time, Walsh’s point drawing ironic cheers from the crowd. They came to life when O’Leary’s introduction was followed by a get-to-you-know-you with Galvin and three Cork scores on the spin. But that stage, it was all too late. Kerry’s stall was set and impenetrable.

Scorers for Cork: D O’Connor 0-5 (frees); A Walsh 0-2, G Canty, D Collins, F Goold, E Cotter 0-1 each.

Scorers for Kerry: Declan O’Sullivan (2 frees), B Sheehan (3 frees) 0-4 each; A Maher, K Donaghy, Darran O’Sullivan, BJ Keane, P Galvin 0-1 each.

Subs for Cork: P Kerrigan for Kelly (blood 23-29); Kerrigan for C O’Neill (49); N O’Leary for P O’Neill (52); L Shorten for Collins (62); B O’Driscoll for Kelly (66).

Subs for Kerry: T Ó Se for Crowley (45); K O’Leary for Curtin (56); D O’Callaghan for Keane (inj 65).

Referee: Maurice Deegan (Laois)


Allianz Football League Division I: Cork 0-11 Kerry 0-13

Report from the web site

Kerry held off an improved second-half performance from Cork to secure a two-point win in Páirc Uí Chaoimh on Sunday, and cement their position at the top of Division I in the Allianz Football League.

The Kingdom dominated the first half and led 0-8 to 0-2 at the break after a display which the Rebels were unable to match all over the pitch.

Cork upped things after the restart but never got close enough to Kerry to put the result in any real doubt, and Jack O’Connor’s side led all the way from the seventh minute.

Cork had a brilliant chance to make amends for their poor showing at the end of the first period though, when Graham Canty had a superb chance for a goal, only to flash his effort wide after bursting through to within point-blank range.

Conor Counihan’s men did get to within three points of Kerry early in the second half but three quick scores in a row from the visitors, coming from the outstanding duo of Bryan Sheehan and Declan O’Sullivan as well as an effort from Paul Galvin, proved decisive as Cork were unable to claw back that six-point difference despite a late rally which saw them come up just short.

Kerry began brightly and after 20 minutes they led 0-6 to 0-1, with a number of their forwards in bright form. Declan O’Sullivan and Darran O’Sullivan both pointed in this period, as did Anthony Maher and Kieran Donaghy.

Cork had scarcely deserved more than the one point they had to their name after 30 minutes but just before the break it looked like Canty would give them a reprieve when he powered his way towards goal. However he couldn’t direct his low shot properly, and it flew to the left.

Donncha O’Connor reduced the gap to five points after the restart but Kerry were able to keep adding points any time Cork got too close, with Sheehan and Declan O’Sullivan chipping in most regularly.

A goal would have changed everything had Cork managed to sneak one, and although they tried to trouble the Kerry full back line with high balls as much as possible towards the end, they couldn’t get past goalkeeper Brendan Kealy, who made a number of fine blocks and saves.

Fintan Goold and Donncha O’Connor hit late points for Cork as they edged closer but there was always an element of certainty about the result.


Allianz Hurling League Division 1A – Tipperary 0-31 Waterford 2-15

Premier hit top gear to blow Déise away

Tipperary 0-31 Waterford 2-15

By Diarmuid O’Flynn for the Irish Examiner newspaper

A semi-final place has been the aim since we started the league. The obvious lack of goals aside (especially when compared to the extraordinary game in Nowlan Park), this was as complete a performance as anyone could reasonably expect from any team at this time of year. Tipperary pounded Waterford into submission in sunny Semple Stadium yesterday and in the process got their 2012 Allianz Hurling League challenge very much back on course.

Right from the off, the Tipperary attack clicked into gear and were six points to one ahead by the 10th minute — Pa Bourke and John O’Neill with two apiece, Noel McGrath and Shane Bourke chipping in with one each. By the 27th minute that lead had been extended to eight points (0-14 to 0-6), as Brian O’Meara, Johnny Ryan and bang-in-form Brendan Maher joined the scoring party, meaning all six forwards had scored, as had a midfielder (Maher).

In reply, Waterford were relying on the accuracy of young full-forward Martin O’Neill from placed balls to keep them in touch, though Maurice Shanahan and Shane O’Sullivan did come in with a point each. When midfielder Stephen Molumphy got on the end of a well-struck Gavin O’Brien sideline for a 29th minute goal, it gave Waterford some hope, and an exchange of points between O’Brien himself and the magnificent Noel McGrath meant there were only five points between the teams at the break, (0-15 to 1-7).

With the breeze behind Waterford in the second half, the expectation was that this might yet be a real contest. Didn’t pan out like that. Lapses of concentration up front caught Waterford napping on several occasions, Tipperary worked the short puckout at their leisure (Darren Gleeson very accurate in that respect), and, boy, did they capitalise. A series of points for the first 20 minutes of the second half, a parade of scorers also with Noel McGrath orchestrating things from centre-forward, and Tipperary were 10 in front in the 55th minute, 0-24 to 1-10. Waterford did then hit the briefest of purple patches, Maurice Shanahan (on the ball a lot more when shifted to the wing) with 1-1 from a penalty and a free, to bring them within six. That was as near as they’d get, however with Tipperary once again hitting the gas in the final ten minutes and coasting home the most comfortable of winners.

“We’re delighted with the points we scored today,” admitted manager Declan Ryan; “There was a lot of skill shown by the lads and we are happy enough with the way they closed out the game. They were very good in possession, used the ball very well and I think it was a step up from the Galway performance in that regard. 31 points is decent shooting.”

The result puts Ryan’s side back in the mix for one of the three league semi-final places on offer in this division and Premier fans will hope for more of the same against Dublin in Croke Park on Saturday. Ryan continued: “We’re looking to get to a league semi-final and that has been the aim since we started the league. We obviously didn’t get off to a great start but our performances have picked up considerably, we’re going in the right direction. Dublin blew us off the pitch last year in the league; they started off poorly this year but their performances are also on the way up. They need the points, so do we; it will be a massive battle, a huge physical battle.”

For Declan’s namesake and Waterford counterpart, Michael Ryan, there was no hiding from the truth — this was a trimming. “We’re still short five or six players but that’s not an excuse. Regardless of who we’re short the team is not performing as well as it should be performing. To gain good experience you have to be playing reasonably good as a team, otherwise players go away with bad memories and down and out. Everybody is ‘down’ in the dressing room and we have a lot of lifting to do. We have to start performing and performing fast. I’m not that bothered about results but what I AM bothered about is the level of performance that — it’s simply not good enough. We’ll have to look at our fitness, game-plan, attitude and focus. We’re just not up to the pace of the game. We don’t look sharp, we don’t look fit and we don’t look mentally focused. There are other problems and everybody has to step up to the plate, players and management.”

Scorers for Tipperary: N McGrath 0-7 (0-1f); P Bourke 0-7 (0-4f); B O’Meara 0-3; P Maher 0-2; B Maher 0-2; J Woodlock 0-2; J O’Neill 0-2; S Bourke 0-2; S McGrath 0-2; J Ryan, T Stapleton, 0-1 each.

Scorers for Waterford: M Shanahan 1-4 (1-0p, 0-1f); M O’Neill 0-4 (4f); S Molumphy 1-0; S O’Sullivan 0-2; G O’Brien, S Walsh, J Nagle, K Moran, E McGrath, 0-1 each.

Subs for Tipperary: S Maher (O’Keeffe 35); J O’Brien (O’Neill 55); S Curran (Ryan 60); T Stapleton (P Maher 64); S McGrath (Woodlock 67).

Subs for Waterford: J Dillon (O’Neill 48); E McGrath (P O’Brien 55); T Ryan (S Walsh 68).

Referee: J McGrath (Westmeath).


Ryan slams Deise’s lack of focus after Tipperary run riot

Report for the Irish Independent newspaper

Tipperary 0-31 Waterford 2-15

WATERFORD manager Michael Ryan didn’t mince his words following yesterday’s 10-point defeat against rampant Tipperary at Semple Stadium. A third successive defeat leaves the Deise on course for a relegation play-off and embattled Ryan insisted the performance of his side was simply “not good enough”. Ryan has enjoyed great success as a manager in Ladies Football and at club level with De La Salle, but the step up to inter-county hurling has been a real baptism of fire. Tipperary were in no mood to be charitable on their home turf yesterday and racked up an astonishing winning tally in front of 4,021 spectators.

The statistics from a Waterford perspective make for grim reading as 43 Tipp efforts on goal yielded 31 points, 11 wides and a save from Waterford goalkeeper Stephen O’Keeffe. In last year’s Munster final, Tipp slammed seven goals past Waterford en route to a 21-point victory and while the Deise net did not bulge yesterday, O’Keeffe watched point after point sail over his head. And, as Tipp manager Declan Ryan acknowledged afterwards, the Premier County have found their feet following that disappointing opening-round defeat to Kilkenny at Nowlan Park. A tally of 2-20 was scored against Galway eight days ago and a move towards better, lower delivery into the forward line is paying rich dividends.

Remarkably, 11 home players were on the scoresheet as man-of-the-match Noel McGrath and Pa Bourke helped themselves to seven points each. And a sparkling return to form has propelled the home side right back into contention for a semi-final place. Tipp led by 0-15 to 1-7 at half-time before they piled on the misery for Waterford in the second half. Stephen Molumphy’s 29th-minute goal brought the visitors back into contention, trailing by 1-6 to 0-14, but Maurice Shanahan’s penalty with 11 minutes remaining proved to be a mere consolation.

Satisfied Tipp boss Declan Ryan reflected: “Waterford wouldn’t be happy with their display but maybe they are at a different stage of pre-season training. But our guys looked sharper today and seem to be improving with every game.” His Waterford counterpart pulled no punches in his assessment of an abysmal display from the visitors. Michael Ryan said: “The biggest worry I have is that we are not playing well all over the field. We’re just not up to the pace of the game. We don’t look sharp, we don’t look fit and we don’t look mentally focused. And that’s something the management must sort out.”

All Star forward John Mullane will boost the Deise when he returns to training tomorrow night, but Ryan admitted: “You can’t expect John Mullane to sort out all our problems. We have problems in a lot of areas all over the field.” Waterford travel to Galway next Sunday in desperate need of points while Tipp will fancy their chances against deflated Dublin under lights at Croke Park on Saturday. And in talisman McGrath, Tipp have a player in superb form, while Brian O’Meara’s development at full-forward continued with a fine display.

Man of the Match: Noel McGrath

Scorers — Tipperary: N McGrath (1f), P Bourke (4f) 0-7 each, B O’Meara 0-3, P Maher, B Maher, J Woodlock, J O’Neill, S Bourke, S McGrath 0-2 each, J Ryan, T Stapleton 0-1 each. Waterford: M Shanahan 1-4 (1-0 pen, 1f), M O’Neill 0-4 (4f), S Molumphy 1-0, S O’Sullivan 0-2, K Moran, J Nagle, S Walsh, G O’Brien, E McGrath 0-1 each.

TIPPERARY — D Gleeson 7; D Maher 7, P Curran 7, M Cahill 7; J O’Keeffe 6, C O’Mahony 7, P Maher 8; B Maher 8, J Woodlock 8; J Ryan 7, N McGrath 9, P Bourke 8; J O’Neill 6, B O’Meara 8, S Bourke 7.

Subs: S Maher 6 for O’Keeffe (h-t), J O’Brien 6 for O’Neill (55), S Curran 6 for Ryan (60) T Stapleton for P Maher (64), S McGrath for Woodlock (67).

WATERFORD — S O’Keeffe 7; D Fives 6, L Lawlor 6, Philip Mahony 6; T Browne 6, K Moran 7, J Nagle 6; M Walsh 6, S Molumphy 7; S O’Sullivan 7, S Walsh 6, G O’Brien 6; M Shanahan 7, M O’Neill 6, P O’Brien 6. Subs: J Dillon 6 for O’Neill (h-t), E McGrath 6 for P O’Brien (55), T Ryan for S Walsh (68).

Ref — J McGrath (Westmeath)


Tipperary 0-31 Waterford 2-15

Sunday, 18 March 2012 18:53

Report from the web site

Tipperary collected their second successive victory in Division 1A of the Allianz National Hurling League this afternoon with a massive ten-point victory over Munster rivals Waterford. Eleven Premier County players were on the scoresheet as Waterford slumped to a third defeat from three outings in this year’s campaign. Man-of-the-match Noel McGrath and Pa Bourke scored seven points each for Tipp, who led by 0-15 to 1-7 at half-time in front of 4,021 spectators at Semple Stadium, Thurles.

Tipp’s huge tally of scores included 26 points from play on a glorious afternoon for hurling. Eleven Premier County players were on the scoresheet as Waterford slumped to a third defeat from three outings in this year’s campaign. Man of the match Noel McGrath and Pa Bourke scored seven points each for Tipp, who led by 0-15 to 1-7 at half time in front of 4021 spectators at Semple Stadium, Thurles. Tipp’s huge tally of scores included 26 points from play on a glorious afternoon for hurling.

McGrath was in devastating form in the centre forward position, clipping over six points from play and a first half free. At left half forward, Pa Bourke also helped himself to seven but his total included four converted frees. It was a day when all six of Tipperary’s starting forwards scored from play and for the second weekend in a row, midfield pair Brendan Maher and James Woodlock scored two points each. There was also a brace for substitute Shane McGrath, who replaced Woodlock with six minutes remaining, while Thomas Stapleton also helped himself to a point after coming on.

Afterwards, Waterford boss Michael Ryan admitted that Waterford’s display was simply not good enough and the Déise are firmly on course for a relegation playoff. Waterford travel to Galway for next weekend’s fourth round of fixtures while Tipp will take on Dublin next Saturday evening at Croke Park in what is a must-win fixture for both teams, for different reasons. League champions Dublin are also pointless after three games and need a result in an attempt to stave off the threat of relegation while a third victory for Tipperary would leave them in contention for a place in the semi-finals. Tipp led from start to finish in today’s fixture, which was a repeat of last year’s Munster final, a game that Tipperary won by 21 points.

TIPPERARY: D Gleeson; D Maher, P Curran, M Cahill; J O’Keeffe, C O’Mahony, P Maher (0-2); B Maher (0-2), J Woodlock (0-2); J Ryan (0-1), N McGrath (0-7, 1f), P Bourke (0-7, 4f); J O’Neill (0-2), B O’Meara (0-3), S Bourke (0-2).

Subs: S Maher for O’Keeffe (h.t.), J O’Brien for O’Neill (55), S Curran for Ryan (60) T Stapleton (0-1) for P Maher (64), S McGrath (0-2) for Woodlock (67).

WATERFORD: S O’Keeffe; D Fives, L Lawlor, Philip Mahony; T Browne, K Moran (0-1), J Nagle (0-1); M Walsh, S Molumphy (1-0); S O’Sullivan (0-2), S Walsh (0-1), G O’Brien (0-1); M Shanahan (1-4, 1-0 pen, 0-1f), M O’Neill (0-4f), P O’Brien.

Subs: J Dillon for O’Neill (49), E McGrath (0-1) for P O’Brien (55), T Ryan for S Walsh (68).

Referee: J McGrath (Westmeath)


Tipperary 0-31 Waterford 2-15

Report from the web site

Waterford slumped to their third successive Allianz Hurling League defeat of the campaign at Thurles on Sunday, losing by 10 points to a resurgent Tipperary side. It’s been a difficult start to Michael Ryan’s tenure and there was no change of fortunes here, as the scoreline hardly reflect Tipperary’s dominance of a one-sided encounter. “At half-time we felt the game was there, but in the second half we absolutely fell apart all over the field,” said Ryan after the game. “Reactions were very poor and I am very disappointed with that performance.”

It was a second straight win for the Premier County, who have bounced back impressively from their opening day defeat to Kilkenny with wins over Galway and now Waterford. Tipperary led by 0-6 to 0-1 after just 10 minutes, with Pa Bourke and Noel McGrath helping Declan Ryan’s side to establish their commanding position. With John O’Neill adding impressive points to their tally, the home side were seven clear and coasting when Waterford grabbed a lifeline through a Stephen Molumphy goal on 28 minutes.

For all their dominance, Tipperary had to be content with a 0-15 to 1-7 lead at half-time. A little after the restart, they moved further clear, however, as McGrath, Padraic Maher and Pa Bourke helped establish a 0-23 to 1-9 lead with further points.

Waterford had a second goal when Maurice Shanahan converted a penalty, but it failed to mask the gulf between the sides and Tipperary never had to extend themselves in cruising to a 10-point win. On this evidence, Waterford will be glad that their star man, John Mullane, is due back in training next week and former two-time GAA all Star Eoin Kelly is also due to resume training with the panel.

Team News

The Tipperary Senior Hurling team to play Waterford in the Allianz Hurling League Division 1A at Semple Stadium on Sunday next shows 2 changes from the team which started in last week’s victory over Galway. Darren Gleeson comes into goal instead of Brendan Cummins and Johnny Ryan gets his first Allianz League start at wing forward instead of Shane McGrath. Interestingly against Kilkenny 3 weeks ago first cousins Gearoid and Adrian Ryan started at 10 and 12 for Tipp and next Sunday the same happens with first cousins Johnny Ryan and Pa Bourke at 10 and 12.

1. Darren Gleeson (Portroe)
2. Donagh Maher (Burgess)
3. Paul Curran (Mullinahone) Captain
4. Michael Cahill (Thurles Sarsfields)
5. John O’Keeffe (Clonoulty Rossmore)
6. Conor O’Mahony (Newport)
7. Padraic Maher (Thurles Sarsfields)
8. Brendan Maher (Borris–Ileigh)
9. James Woodlock (Drom and Inch)
10. Johnny Ryan (Drom and Inch)
11. Noel McGrath (Loughmore Castleiney)
12. Pa Bourke (Thurles Sarsfields)
13. John O’Neill (Clonoulty Rossmore)
14. Brian O’Meara (Kilruane MacDonaghs)
15. Shane Bourke (JK Brackens)

Match Arrangements

Only the O Riain (New) stand at Semple Stadium will be open for the game with the following arrangements in force: Stiles open at 1.30. Stile 53 will be for club groups who have booked in advance. Admission will be €13 for adults and €5 for students and OAPs with valid photographic id. Under 16s are free. Season ticket holders should go to Stiles 50,51 or 52. Other passholders should go to Stile 41. Student and OAP stiles are 46 and 47 and under 16s will be admitted at Stile 49. All other stiles will be for adults.

Allianz Hurling League Division 1B – Limerick 2-20 Wexford 0-18

Moran and Breen call tune for slick moving Treaty

Wexford 0-18 Limerick 2-20

By Brendan Furlong for the Irish Examiner newspaper

Limerick’s campaign is back on track following this impressive eight point victory over Wexford in their Division 1B clash at Wexford Park yesterday. Having lost their opening game to Clare, Limerick bounced back against Laois, and with this follow-up victory over a disappointing Wexford, they are now back in with a real chance of securing a place in the divisional final. It was nip and tuck for the opening 20 minutes but once David Breen netted his side’s opening goal in the 21st minute, they assumed control.

Limerick varied their game well, moving the ball diagonally and at pace when required, while also utilising the high ball down the centre where David Breen and Niall Moran won the aerial battle hands down, finishing with 2-7 of their side’s tally between them. Wexford’s attack never functioned as a unit and the Model men now find themselves in a relegation battle with Laois to preserve their status. When Wexford moved two clear inside the opening 10 minutes, it looked as though they were going to build on their dramatic late victory over Offaly seven days earlier.

David Breen and Harry Kehoe opened the scoring, before a fine Breen effort had the Shannonsiders back in front. Wexford reeled off three points to lead 0-4 to 0-2 just 10 minutes in and the sides continued to trade points for 0-6 each when Limerick struck for the game’s opening goal. Niall Moran gathered a high James Ryan delivery close to goal, picked out the in-rushing David Breen and the Na Piarsaigh clubman fired home a splendid goal. That goal, allied to scores from Conor Allis, Graeme Mulcahy and Moran gave the Shannonsiders a 1-10 to 0-9 at the break.

The game deteriorated on the resumption, with Limerick taking control, their half-back trio of Wayne McNamara, Donal O’Grady and Gavin O’Mahoney, particularly impressive. When Rory Jacob pointed within 30 seconds of the restart, it lifted the large home following, but once Limerick responded with their second goal inside a further 30 seconds, the result was a foregone conclusion. Once again, Moran availed of a high ball close to goal, rounded Keith Rossiter, before going on to easily beat Niall Breen from close range, giving his side a six point cushion, 2-10 to 0-10.

Wexford hit back with a Harry Kehoe free, but once Graeme Mulcahy fired over two excellent points, the visitors’ dominance increased. The home side added points through Harry Kehoe and Guiney but then Conor Allis fired over two successive points for Limerick and while Rory Jacob and Paul Browne exchanged scores, a Wexford recovery never looked like materialising. Though they were reduced to 14-men following the sending-off of David Breen for a second yellow, Limerick finished strongly with Allis, Mulcahy and Moran all on target.

WEXFORD: N Breen; J Tonks, K Rossiter, B Kehoe; D Stamp, M O’Hanlon, C Kenny; H Kehoe (0-7, 5f, 1, 65), D Redmond (0-2); J Berry, E Quigley, P J Nolan (0-1); R Jacob (0-1), S Banville (0-2), D O’Keeffe (0-2).

Subs: J Guiney (0-3, 2f, 1, 65) for Berry (23); E Moore for Quigley (48); T O’Leary for Nolan (48); J Leacy for Kehoe (64); P Morris for Banville (64).

LIMERICK: N Quaid; S Walsh, R McCarthy, T Condon; W McNamara, D O’Grady, G O’Mahoney (0-1f); P Browne (0-1), J Ryan; T O’Brien, D Breen (1-2), C Allis (0-6, 5f); G Mulcahy (0-3), N Moran (1-5), M Ryan (0-1).

Subs: S Tobin for M Ryan (ht); N Maher (0-1) for O’Brien (56); T Ryan for Ryan (61).

Referee: C Lyons (Cork)


Limerick 2-20 Wexford 0-18

Report from the web site

Limerick’s recovery from their opening day defeat to Clare gathered further pace with a second successive win in Division IA, accounting easily for Wexford with eight points to spare at Wexford Park.

Wexford had made the better start, but a goal by David Breen helped John Allen’s side to a 1-10 to 0-9 interval lead. Breen’s goal came on 21 minutes and gave his side the lead for the first time, an advantage they would increase thanks to two more points from their captain before the short whistle.

Niall Moran hit Limerick’s second goal shortly after the restart, while Gavin O’Mahony and Graham Mulcahy added points that helped the Treaty men into an eight-point lead by the 57th minute, which they maintained to the end. After contributing handsomely in the scoring stakes, Breen’s day ended on a low note when he was sent off for a second yellow card offence just before full-time.

Allianz Hurling League Division 1B – Clare 2-22 Laois 2-13

Clare outgun improved Laois

Laois 2-13 Clare 2-22

By Daragh Ó Conchúir for the Irish Examiner newspaper

Clare had just too much power and speed for Laois at Portlaoise yesterday, but when one recalls the dreadful championship humiliation suffered by the Moores at the hands of Cork in the same venue last summer, there was plenty to be positive about formanager, Teddy McCarthy. The Corkman won’t delude himself into thinking his side was ever going to win this, but they remained competitive right to the end and that represents progress. Clare boss, Davy Fitzgerald was grumbling about the performance of referee, Eamon Hasson but will surely also have concerns about some of the poor options taken by his players who seemed content with being in cruise mode for much of the game.

The excellent Patrick Donnellan and Nickey O’Connell gave them a major foothold around midfield and John Conlon was the target for the vast majority of the resultant possession. The Clonlara man had a good tussle with Bryan Stapleton but finished with the majority of the plaudits, plundering 1-3 and setting up Sean Collins’ first-half goal. Laois were not without their standout performers, with former goalkeeper, Paddy Mullaney doing well at right corner-back, Willie Hyland was accurate from placed balls, and Neil Foyle a constant aerial threat. Laois had a lightening start, Michael McEvoy, John Brophy and Matthew Whelan landing points inside the opening three minutes.

From the time Conlon drew the Laois cover to release the untracked Collins for a fourth minute goal though, Clare began to establish a firm grip on proceedings however. Donnellan, Colin Ryan and Conlon were all on target but some prodigal shooting was punished when Foyle won the sliotar strongly and beat two defenders before driving a low shot to the Clare net in the 27th minute. Clare finished with points from centre-back James McInerney, Conlon and Donnellan to lead 1-11 to 1-6 at half time and were never in danger once Conlon goaled almost straight from the resumption. Hyland rammed home a penalty goal after a prodigious fetch by Foyle in the 62nd minute and it was just reward for the efforts of the home team.

Scorers for Clare: J Conlon 1-3, C Ryan 0-5 (3fs), P Donnellan 0-4, S Collins 1-1, D Keane 0-3, J McInerney, J Clancy 0-2 each, N O’Connell (f), C Morey 0-1.

Scorers for Laois: W Hyland 1-6 (1-0 pen, 3fs), N Foyle 1-1, M Whelan, J Walsh, M McEvoy, C Murray, S Maher, J Brophy 0-1 each.

CLARE: P Kelly; E Glynn, C Dillon, C Cooney; B Bugler, J McInerney, E Barrett; N O’Connell, P Donnellan; C Morey, S Collins, F Lynch; J Conlon, C Ryan, J Clancy.

Subs: D Keane for Lynch (49), L Markham for Morey (53), P Kelly for Barrett (67), E Hayes for Clancy (70).

LAOIS: E Reilly; P Mullaney, D Maher, B Stapleton; C Dunne, J Fitzpatrick, M Whelan; J Walsh, M McEvoy; J Brophy, B Dunne, W Hyland; W Dunphy, N Foyle, S Maher.

Subs: D O’Mahoney for Dunphy (ht), M Meade for Dunne (55), D Peacocky for Brophy (57), C Murray for Foyle (64).

Referee: E Hasson (Derry)


Allianz Hurling league Division IB: Laois 2-13 Clare 2-22

Report from the web site

Clare extended their unbeaten run in the Allianz League under Davy Fitzgerald with an impressive win in Portlaoise on Sunday. The Banner men maintained their place at the top of the table in Division IB with another strong performance, condemning Laois to their third successive defeat, a thoroughly miserable start to Teddy McCarthy’s start to life as Laois manager An early goal by Clare’s centre-forward Sean Collins, which was set up by John Conlon, helped offset the concession of three points in a row at the start of the game. Fitzgerald’s men dominated the first half to lead by 1-11 to 1-6 at the break, Neil Foyle hitting the Midlanders’ major.

That advantage was stretched to 10 points when Conlon turned goal scorer just after the restart. Willie Hyland brought his total to 1-6 for the day when he grabbed a goal near the end, but it was nothing more than consolation. “We’ve won three games. Laois beat us last year and we got one over on them today. We’re looking to Wexford next week and that’s all we can do, we’re not getting carried away,” Fitzgerald, the Clare boss, said after.