/ GAA

Kerry 1-11 Cork 2-18

Updated: Sunday, 06 Apr 2014 22:09 | Comments

Kerry's Anthony Maher and Andrew O'Sullivan of Cork
Kerry's Anthony Maher and Andrew O'Sullivan of Cork

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Cork swatted away old rivals Kerry with a clinical second-half display to win by 2-18 to 1-11 in Division 1 of the Allianz Football League at Austin Stack Park.

The Rebels scored 2-17 from play, with Paul Kerrigan netting just before half-time and substitute Colm O'Neill adding a second goal in the 50th minute.

Paul Geaney's goal was cancelled out by Kerrigan as Cork led 1-07 to 1-06 at the break.

Kerry were torn apart after that with Brian Hurley scoring 0-08 for Cork, who face Dublin in next Sunday's Division 1 semi-finals.

Brian Cuthbert's men had only two points to spare when defeating Kerry in January's McGrath Cup final, but they ran out easy winners this afternoon in the Tralee sunshine.

Kerry came into the game with an outside chance of reaching the league's last-four, aiming for their fourth victory on the trot.

Cork's draw with Tyrone last week secured their semi-final place and they were keen to finish the campaign as table toppers, with Derry, Tyrone and reigning champions Dublin all snapping at their heels.

Kerry had a strong breeze behind them early on, with Peter Crowley charging forward from wing back to cancel out Brian Hurley's opening second-minute point.

Stephen O'Brien watched a fisted effort come back off the post, but James O'Donoghue mopped up with his first score of the day to give his side a 0-02 to 0-01 lead.

The Munster giants continued to go point for point as powerful full-forward Hurley, who gave his marker Mark Griffin a torrid time, finished off a clever passing move from Cork.

John Hayes followed up with a curling 40-yard shot to nudge the Rebels ahead, but Kerry responded through Paul Geaney (free) and O'Brien, who ran strongly before slotting over.

Hurley made it 0-04 apiece with a free and Cork began to hit their stride, Fintan Goold breaking clear of two Kerrymen to edge the visitors ahead again.

Hurley did likewise, benefiting from another pinpoint delivery in towards him. He left full-back Griffin trailing in his wake to punch over his fourth point.

As the pace quickened, O'Donoghue shrugged off Cork captain Michael Shields to race through and send a rising shot just over the crossbar.

The first goal of duly arrived in the 29th minute, crisp passing from Kerry opening up the space as Daithi Casey fed Geaney, who turned and sent a powerful left-footed drive into the roof of the net.

Kerry maintained a two-point lead as a Geaney free cancelled out John Hayes' point from play, but Cork bagged a timely goal on the stroke of half-time.

Kerrigan, a late inclusion in attack for John O'Rourke, held off Shane Enright to fire a low shot to the right of goalkeeper Brian Kelly. That strike saw the Rebels lead by the minimum at the break.

Kerry brought on Johnny Buckley at midfield for the second half, Eamonn Fitzmaurice's second switch after Darran O'Sullivan had been introduced earlier.

The Kerry manager was forced into another change on the resumption as the injured O'Sullivan made way for Bryan Sheehan.

Cork pressed on as two Kerrigan points sandwiched a Damien Cahalane score, moving the visitors into a 1-10 to 1-06 lead by the 40th minute.

Hurley - the game's dominant forward - landed three more points in quick succession as Cork moved up through the gears.

A Casey point was Kerry's only response before the visitors effectively sealed the result with their second major.

The in-form O'Neill was the scorer, his first bit of possession seeing him turn neatly and ripple the neat with a classy finish past Kelly.

Hurley tagged on another point to make it 2-14 to 1-07 and suddenly Cuthbert's charges were out of sight.

Hurley's influence on proceedings eventually saw Fionn Fitzgerald switched onto him, but the competitiveness of the tie petered out as Kerry fans began to leave the ground before the 60-minute mark.

It was becoming a rout as Colm O'Driscoll and two more attacking substitutes, Donncha O'Connor and Daniel Goulding, got on the scoresheet for Cork.

It was a deflating finish to Kerry's final competitive outing before the Munster Championship, and points from David Moran, Sheehan and O'Donoghue mattered little in the end.

O'Neill took his tally to 1-01 in the 68th minute as Cork completed their scoring haul. Just moments later, captain Kieran O'Leary hit a poor wide - summing up a forgettable afternoon for this well-beaten Kerry side.

Kerry: Brian Kelly; Paul Murphy, Mark Griffin, Shane Enright; Peter Crowley (0-01), Fionn Fitzgerald, Marc Ó Sé; Anthony Maher, David Moran (0-01); Donnchadh Walsh, Daithí Casey (0-01), Kieran O'Leary (capt); Stephen O'Brien (0-01), Paul Geaney (1-02, 0-02f), James O'Donoghue (0-04, 0-01f).

Subs used: Darran O'Sullivan for Walsh, Johnny Buckley for Maher, Bryan Sheehan (0-01, 0-01f) for Darran O'Sullivan, Jack Sherwood for Ó Sé, Barry John Keane for Geaney.

Cork: Ken O'Halloran; Michael Shields (capt), Jamie O'Sullivan, Tom Clancy (Clonakilty); James Loughrey, Paddy Kelly, Damien Cahalane (0-01); Fintan Goold (0-01), Andrew O'Sullivan; Colm O'Driscoll (0-01), Mark Collins, Paul Kerrigan (1-02); Barry O'Driscoll, Brian Hurley (0-08, 0-01f), John Hayes (0-02). 

Subs used: Colm O'Neill (1-01) for Hayes, Donncha O'Connor (0-01) for O’Sullivan, Daniel Goulding (0-01) for C O'Driscoll, Tomas Clancy (Fermoy) for Shields, Micheal O Laoire for B O'Driscoll, Rory O'Sullivan for Kelly.

Referee: E Kinsella (Laois)

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