Champions Cork were put to the pin of their collar by Kilkenny in the Gala All-Ireland senior camogie championship (Group One) at Nowlan Park on Saturday.
However, despite the relentless rain that made conditions extremely difficult, they regained the lead in the second half to emerge victorious on a score of 2-05 to 0-07.
Credit must go to Denise Cronin's charges who received a stiff examination. After a low-scoring first half played in torrential rain, the Red and White turned over leading by a single point, 0-03 to 0-02. Kilkenny were awarded a penalty soon after the resumption but the alertness of Aoife Murray in the Cork goal diverted Michelle Quilty's effort over for a point.
It was a battle all the way until substitute Emer O'Farrell found the net at the end of the third quarter. Cork continued to drive forward with Gemma O'Connor and Emer Dillon in control and when Rachel Moloney bagged their second goal three minutes later, Kilkenny were up against an inspired Cork.
They never gave up through their captain Ann Dalton and Quilty but scores were hard come by as Cork held out. This group which also involves Tipperary and Dublin will go down to the wire to determine the semi-finals places.
Elsewhere at a rain-soaked Wexford Park extra time in the All Ireland SFC qualifier between Wexford and Roscommon threatened the Group Two camogie game between Wexford and Galway. Although put back a half hour to 7.30pm the girls remained focused. They were all square at the break, but the Maroon and White with Aisling Connolly shining managed to shake off a determined challenge from the hosts to come out on top, 3-07 to 2-06.
The teams, both looking good for the penultimate stages, were deadlocked on 30 minutes 2-04 apiece with the hosts having the better of the starts. Goals from Rose Marie Breen and one from Kate Kelly on 20 minutes were negated by Connolly and Veronica Curtin within a two minute spell immediately before the break.
The Wexford defence was staunch, however Brenda Hanney goaled eight minutes into the new half – this score ultimately proving the difference as Wexford only managed two more points.