Cork 1-25 Tipperary 2-15

Updated: Sunday, 22 Apr 2012 20:13 | Comments

Brendan Maher goes down under pressure
Brendan Maher goes down under pressure


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 Eion 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).

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