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Allianz Hurling League Division 1 Semi Final – Cork 1-25 Tipperary 2-15
Cork 1-25 Tipperary 2-15
Report from the RTE.ie web site
Cork defeated Tipperary 1-25 to 2-15 in thrilling encounter at Semple Stadium to set up an Allianz Hurling League final against Kilkenny. The sides were level on 10 occasions, but Cork finished strongly with 1-07 in the final 10 minutes to Tipp’s sole point. Brian O’Meara and Eoin Kelly set Tipp up for victory with second half goals, but a superb Luke O’Farrell strike sparked a Rebel rout in the closing stages, and with Patrick Horgan claiming a nine points tally, they strode away to win by seven. A superb defensive display by Eoin Cadogan, coupled with huge contributions from Pa Cronin, Horgan and Niall McCarthy set up a mouth-watering title decider.
Horgan gave Cork the lead for the first time in the ninth minute, after Pa Bourke (2) had traded points with John Gardiner and William Egan. A superb Niall McCarthy score was followed by another Horgan point, but Tipp responded with Shane Bourke firing in a shot which goalkeeper Donal Og Cusack did well to deflect over the bar. Moments later, Cusack’s game was over, due to an injury sustained while stretching for a ball, with Anthony Nash coming into the action after 16 minutes. Jamie Coughlan’s creative streak saw him carve an opening for Horgan to clip over his third score, and when Paudie O’Sullivan tagged on another Cork point, they led by three.
But that advantage was soon wiped out. With James Woodlock imposing himself on the game, Tipp came strong, Woodlock firing over a long range effort and setting up a gem for Bourke, who also converted another free to make it 0-07 each on 25 minutes.
Bourke’s fifth score had Tipperary back in front, but only briefly, for Horgan’s fourth levelled the scores for the fifth time, before Egan steered over a long range free to make it 0-09 to 0-08 in the Rebels’ favour. A wonderful Niall McCarthy score eased Cork two ahead, and with Eoin Cadogan revelling at the heart of their defence, they thwarted their opponents until Brian O’Meara popped up with a stoppage time point, and won the free from which Bourke sent the sides in level on 0-10 each.
Horgan and Luke O’Farrell tagged on further points as Cork eased into a two-point lead early in the second half, but in the 46th minute, Brian O’Meara used his stregth and power to bustle his way past two defenders and blast the ball to the net. But Cork, with Horgan, Egan and O’Farrell all on target, kept their noses in front until substitute Eoin Kelly drilled a 20-metre free direct to the net. Tipp were clinging on to a two-point lead when O’Farrell broke away on the left to arrow an angled shot to the net for a magnificent 57th minute goal, a score that effectively killed off the Premier county’s title challenge. Cork scored at will in the closing stages, with substitutes Conor Lehane and Darren Sweetnam and Horgan leading the Rebels to glory, while the brilliant Cadogan continued to deliver an exhibition of defending.
Cork scorers: L O’Farrell 1-02, P Horgan 0-09 (6f), N McCarthy, W Egan (2f) 0-03 each, P Cronin, C Lehane 0-02 each, J Gardiner, P O’Sullivan, D Sweetnam, A Nash 0-01 each.
Tipperary scorers: B O’Meara 1-02, E Kelly 1-01 (1-01f), P Bourke 0-07 (5f), J Woodlock, G Ryan, N McGrath, S Bourke, J O’Brien 0-01 each.
TIPPERARY: B Cummins, C O’Brien, Padraic Maher, M Cahill, T Stapleton. C O’Mahony, D Young, B Maher, J Woodlock, G Ryan, N McGrath, P Bourke, S Bourke, B O’Meara, J O’Brien.
Subs: S Maher for Young, E Kelly for S Bourke, S McGrath for B Maher, S Curran for Woodlock, J O’Neill for N McGrath.
CORK: D Og Cusack, S O’Neill, S McDonnell, C O’Sullivan, S O hAilpín, E Cadogan, W Egan, J Gardiner, L McLoughlin, J Coughlan, P Cronin, N McCarthy, L O’Farrell, P O’Sullivan, P Horgan.
Subs: A Nash for Cusack, J Kenny for O hAilpin, C Lehane for Coughlan, D Sweetnam for McCarthy, C McCarthy for McLoughlin.
Referee: M Wadding (Waterford)
Cork send summer signals
Cork 1-25 Tipperary 2-15
By Diarmuid O’Flynn for the Irish Examiner newspaper
Monday, April 23, 2012
Move over, make a bit of room for us there lads — that was the message delivered to Kilkenny and Tipperary from Semple Stadium yesterday as Cork came with a powerful finish to qualify for their second Allianz Hurling League final in three years (lost the 2010 final to Galway).
For some time now the consensus has been that the Cats and Tipp — All-Ireland finalists for the past three years — sit on their own at hurling’s top table, Dublin leading a chasing pack that has been living on scraps. Not any more. Yes, it’s still only the league, but the 15,000+ attendance in Thurles yesterday were witness to a team of real ability, a team ahead of schedule in its development, a team that will surely now harbour ambitions that extend beyond the league final against Kilkenny in two weeks.
Right from the start Cork were in this game and though playing into a strong breeze, carried the fight to Tipperary in the opening 23 minutes, at the end of which they led 0-7 to 0-4. They lost their captain and keeper Donal Óg Cusack during that period (a freak Achilles tendon injury) but just as they had absorbed the loss of four starters from the drawn game against the same opposition in the final league round two weeks ago, so they absorbed Cusack’s loss, took it in their stride, big-hitting Anthony Nash taking over between the sticks.
Jamie Coughlan was causing all sorts of problems at centre-forward for Conor O’Mahony with his pace and skill, wings Pa Cronin and Niall McCarthy were winning their battles, while the inside line of Luke O’Farrell, Paudie O’Sullivan and Patrick Horgan bristled with threat. At the other end, centre-back Eoin Cadogan again led the line with authority, while behind him Shane O’Neill was enjoying a massive battle with Tipperary’s giant Brian O’Meara, Stephen McDonnell and Conor O’Sullivan doing well alongside. O’Meara deserves special mention. Though on a beaten team, being very tightly marked by the gritty O’Neill, the big man from Kilruane had a superb game; finished with 1-2 and could have been more, his bulk and strength complemented by a silken touch. By the break Tipp had managed something of a comeback, game tied at 0-10 apiece, free-taker Pa Bourke doing the bulk of their scoring (seven points, five placed balls). It was a false reflection on events, however, Cork already looking the better side.
The second half continued in the same vein, Cork hurling very well throughout the field but hit with two body-blows, goals from O’Meara (46) and sub Eoin Kelly (20m free 53rd min). Each of those goals put Tipp back into the lead, but each time Cork responded immediately with points at the other end — no accident, said Cadogan. “That’s something we focused on in training; when you get setbacks in games you don’t sit back, you have to try and pick yourself up. The movement of our forwards and the way they were moving — it was great for a back to be looking at that down the field, seeing the points going over like that then the goal as well.”
Ah yes, the Cork goal. It arrived in the 57th minute, Horgan and McCarthy combining to put O’Farrell through; Luke had Paudie O’Sullivan available in the centre — didn’t need him, his blistering angled drive almost taking the rigging from the Tipp goals. It put Cork 1-18 to 2-14 up and when the kids came on, Conor Lehane and Darren Sweetnam, the icing was put on the cake, Cork outscoring Tipp 1-7 to 0-1 in the final 10 minutes to romp home. It was total hurling, the forwards running up a big score, midfield supplying the ammo, the backs doing a suffocating job on the dangerous Tipp attack. “We’re working as a unit,” Eoin Cadogan explained: “Any defence in the country has to be tight when you have the likes of Eoin Kelly roaming around the place, Noel McGrath as well. We stood up to them well today but they will be a different animal come championship.”
It’s not just the kids doing the business either, says Eoin. “The old as well, you had Tom Kenny coming on too. It’s a huge bonus when the legs are getting tired to see these fresh guys coming in. With his first touch Conor Lehane puts the ball over the bar, as did Darren Sweetnam, that was a huge bonus for the backs looking down the field. Overall we can be delighted with today.”
Scorers for Cork: P Horgan 0-9 (6f); L O’Farrell 1-2; N McCarthy 0-3; W Egan 0-3 (2f); P Cronin 0-2; C Lehane 0-2; J Gardiner, P O’Sullivan, D Sweetnam, A Nash (f), 0-1 each.
Scorers for Tipperary: P Bourke 0-7 (5f); B O’Meara 1-2; E Kelly 1-1 (1-1f); G Ryan 0-2; J Woodlock, N McGrath, J O’Brien, 0-1 each.
Subs for Cork: A Nash (Cusack inj. 17); T Kenny (Ó hAilpín 60); C Lehane (Coughlan 60); D Sweetnam (McCarthy 66); C McCarthy (McLoughlin 67).
Tipperary Subs: S Maher (Young 28); E Kelly (S Bourke 45); S McGrath (B Maher 48); S Curran (Woodlock 61); J O’Neill (N McGrath 68).
Referee: M Wadding (Waterford)