Tipperary 5-19 Waterford 0-13
John McGrath and leading marksman Seamus Callanan collected 4-13 between them as Tipperary demolished Waterford in this afternoon’s Munster SHC final at the Gaelic Grounds in Limerick.
The same margin of victory as existed between the counties in the 2011 provincial decider existed here as McGrath bagged 3-02 and Callanan pithced in with 1-11.
This was an absolute rout – a wholly unexpected one it must be said – as Tipp advance to an All-Ireland semi-final on August 14, with Waterford to face Wexford in the quarter-finals on 24 July.
This was a forgettable afternoon for Waterford – who have now lost their last five Munster final appearances against Tipp dating back to 2009.
McGrath’s treble was the first in a Munster final since Lar Corbett put four past Waterford in the 2011 final.
McGrath, a former dual All-Ireland minor medallist, struck in the ninth, 41st and 48th minutes as Tipp repeated last year’s Munster final victory over Derek McGrath’s charges.
The Loughmore-Castleiney star also added two points for good measure.
Tipp were two points clear – 1-07 to 0-08 – at the end of a first half that saw Waterford register nine wides.
There was little to indicate what was to follow in the second half – as Tipp outscored their opponents by 4-12 to 0-05. Waterford finished with scoring contributions from just three players on the day – although Austin Gleeson did cut over two superb sidelines in the first half.
He was also responsible for four first half wides, too, and it was a surprise to see the Mount Sion star whipped off with 15 minutes of normal time remaining.
Pauric Mahony was Waterford’s leading marksman in the first half with five points, four from frees, but the Déise managed just two points from play before the interval – and they were blitzed in the second half.
Waterford did start well with the opening two points from Patrick Curran and Gleeson but they conceded a give-away goal in the ninth minute.
Niall O’Meara’s shot had the fizz taken out of it by a covering Waterford player but goalkeeper Stephen O’Keeffe was picked off as he attempted to clear and John McGrath tapped the ball into an empty net.
That goal handed Tipp a 1-02 to 0-04 lead before a Mahony free levelled matters.
Mahony (free) and Gleeson’s second sideline had Waterford two clear – 0-07 to 1-02 – but Tipp then reeled off the next five points without reply (including four Seamus Callanan frees).
In that spell, Waterford went 20 minutes without a score until another Mahony free concluded the first half scoring.
Waterford were still very much in contention but it unravelled for them in a disastrous eight-minute spell that saw a normally water-tight defence opened up for three goals.
McGrath found the net from close range in the 41st minute, Michael Breen added another three minutes later and McGrath rounded off his treble with a penalty awarded for Barry Coughlan’s foul on Callanan.
There was further misery for Waterford in the final minute when Callanan crashed home Tipp’s fifth goal – leaving the runners-up with that 2011 feeling all over again.
Tipp achieved this without suspended forward John ‘Bubbles’ O’Dwyer too – and the Killenaule man has a battle on his hands to get back in the team for the Premier County’s next assignment based on this evidence.
TIPPERARY: D Gleeson; C Barrett, J Barry, M Cahill; S Kennedy, R Maher, Pádraic Maher (0-01); B Maher, M Breen (1-01); D McCormack, Patrick Maher (0-01), N McGrath (0-01); J McGrath (3-02, 1-00 pen), S Callanan (1-11, 0-08f, 0-01 65), N O’Meara.
Subs: J Forde (0-01) for O’Meara (50), S Curran for McCormack (56), K Bergin for B Maher (60), A McCormack (0-01) for N McGrath (66), D Maher for R Maher (67).
WATERFORD: S O’Keeffe; S Fives, B Coughlan, N Connors; Philip Mahony, T de Búrca, D Fives; J Barron, K Moran; S Bennett, Pauric Mahony (0-06, 4f), M Walsh; M Shanahan, P Curran (0-05, 3f), A Gleeson (0-02 sls).
Subs: T Devine for Shanahan (49), J Dillon for Walsh (50), C Dunford for Gleeson (55), C Gleeson for Connors (57), B O’Halloran for Pauric Mahony (60).
Referee: B Gavin (Offaly).