Tipperary 1-22 Cork 0-24

Updated: Sunday, 24 Jun 2012 20:04 | Comments

Tipperary are into the Munster final after defeating Cork
Tipperary are into the Munster final after defeating Cork



Noel McGrath notched the only goal of the game as defending champions Tipperary overcame old rivals Cork to qualify for next month's Munster Senior Hurling Championship final.

There were seven points apiece from free-takers Pat Horgan and Pa Bourke in a free-flowing first half, at the end of which Cork led 0-14 to 0-12.

Lar Corbett had been introduced by Tipp before the break and it was his pass that created the opening for McGrath’s crucial 46th-minute goal.

The semi-final, watched by a 32,568-strong Páirc Uí Chaoimh crowd, took another sudden twist when Tipp forward John O’Brien was sent-off just two minutes later.

He walked for a high challenge on Brian Murphy but despite threatening throughout the remainder, Cork were unable to make the extra man count.

Referee Brian Gavin reacted to a pre-match skirmish between Cathal Naughton and Padraic Maher by producing two yellow cards, with the obvious tension bubbling over moments before the throw-in.

Both attacks exploited space in a fast-paced opening period, Noel McGrath slinging the first point over for Tipp before Cork captain Pat Horgan replied with a free.

The pace of the youthful Rebel attack was in evidence when Jamie Coughlan cut through and supplied Championship debutant Darren Sweetnam with a settling score.

Another first-timer, Conor Lehane, followed up with Cork’s third to open up a 0-03 to 0-01 lead much to the delight of the home supporters.

Jimmy Barry-Murphy’s men were able to maintain that two-point buffer as Cathal Naughton, Pa Cronin and Horgan (free) replied to efforts from Pa Bourke, Gearóid Ryan and Noel McGrath.

In the 12th minute, Patrick Maher broke through for the game’s first goal-scoring chance but Cork stopper Anthony Nash was untroubled as the shot flew into the side-netting.

Cork strung together two points to move 0-08 to 0-04 ahead, Horgan converting a free after he was fouled and the busy Coughlan got free to grab his first of the afternoon.

Noel McGrath set up Brian O’Meara for Tipp’s sixth point and free-taker Bourke soon added to his tally, yet Cork were putting pressure on the Tipp rearguard and getting some reward.

Michael Cahill coughed up a free which Horgan angled over, Coughlan landed his second from play and Paudie O’Sullivan got in the only before Horgan trumped everyone with a stunning catch and point.

That strike meant that all six Cork forwards had scored from play by the 21st minute, and more importantly their lead now stood at 0-12 to 0-08.

Tipp hit back with three successive points - all from Bourke, with Noel McGrath’s movement causing concern for Cork - before Horgan (free) and Brendan Maher exchanged scores.

Horgan scooped up a breaking ball for a fine score on the cusp of half-time, nudging the margin back to two. Bourke had a chance in injury-time to bring it back to the minimum, but he opted to go for goal from a close-in free and Cork repelled it.

The breeze, now behind Tipperary, stiffened for the start of the second half and O’Meara’s strung burst and point from the right made it 0-14 to 0-13.

Cork bounced back with a Horgan free, won by the elusive Coughlan, and Paudie O’Sullivan showed great composure to fire over his second.

It was classic end-to-end stuff and Tipp then enjoyed their best spell, rattling off a haul of 1-03 that would prove so vital in the end.

After some loose shooting, Bourke boosted his confidence with a long-range free and tapped over a second following a foul on O’Brien.

A terrific leap and catch by Patrick Maher put in motion the move that led to their goal. The ball was fed through to Corbett who spotted McGrath unmarked to his left and the corner forward produced a tidy finish past Nash.

Padraig Maher caught Cork on the hop soon after when he surged through the middle and pointed to give Declan Ryan’s side a 1-16 to 0-16 lead.

Cork showed no signs of crumbling though and O’Brien’s sudden dismissal - a poor attempt as dispossessing Murphy earned him a second yellow card - invited the Rebels to dictate.

Apart from a Brendan Maher point, it was all Cork for the next few minutes. Horgan fired over another free, substitute Cian McCarthy pointed after good work from Lorcan McLoughlin and O’Sullivan picked off his third.

The momentum was with Cork as their pace up front left Tipp struggling to cover and Lehane swiftly levelled at 1-17 to 0-20.

Tipp wobbled with a second wide in quick succession, but substitute Shane Bourke made an immediate impact - setting up two points for top scorer Pa - and their defence, with Thomas Stapleton standing out, tightened up considerably.

Coughlan did get loose to cut the gap back to a single point at 1-19 to 0-21, however goal scorer Noel McGrath stepped up to the mark again with some key contributions.

He pointed from a lovely ball in from Shane Bourke, and then Pa worked it in for McGrath to complete his tally of 1-04.

Now a goal behind again and running out of time, Cork had to react. Corbett foiled them by winning a free which Bourke sent over for a 1-22 to 0-21 scoreline.

That proved to be Tipperary’s final score as the Rebels enjoyed the better of possession in the closing six minutes. Daniel Kearney pointed and fellow substitute Luke O’Farrell won a free which Horgan slotted over.

Nonetheless, Cian McCarthy fluffed his lines with a poor wide after Conor O’Sullivan had picked him out for a possible goal chance.

14-man Tipp were coming under more pressure but the two minutes of injury-time only produced one further point - Horgan’s ninth successful free - and Ryan’s charges will face Waterford in the provincial decider for the second year running.


Cork: P Horgan 0-11 (0-09f), J Coughlan, P O’Sullivan 0-03 each, C Lehane 0-02, D Sweetnam, C Naughton, P Cronin, D Kearney 0-01 each

Tipperary: P Bourke 0-12 (0-07f, 0-02 ‘65’), N McGrath 1-04, B O’Meara, B Maher 0-02 each, G Ryan, Padraic Maher 0-01 each

Cork: Anthony Nash; Shane O'Neill, Brian Murphy, Conor O'Sullivan; Tom Kenny, Eoin Cadogan, William Egan; Darren Sweetnam, Lorcan McLoughlin; Conor Lehane, Pa Cronin, Cathal Naughton; Jamie Coughlan, Paudie O'Sullivan, Patrick Horgan.

Subs used: Cian McCarthy for Naughton (47 mins), Daniel Kearney for Sweetnam (51), Luke O’Farrell for Lehane (63).

Tipperary: Brendan Cummins; Conor O'Brien, Paul Curran (capt), Michael Cahill; Thomas Stapleton, Conor O'Mahony, Padraic Maher; Brendan Maher, Shane McGrath; Gearóid Ryan, Patrick Maher, Pa Bourke; Brian O'Meara, John O'Brien, Noel McGrath.

Subs used: Lar Corbett for Ryan (34 mins), Shane Bourke for O’Meara (55), James Woodlock for B Maher (57), Eoin Kelly for P Bourke (67), Donagh Maher for Stapleton (70).

Referee: Brian Gavin (Offaly).

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