Kevin Moran savoured every moment of the Páirc Uí Chaoimh experience as his crucial goal just before half-time laid the platform for Waterford to battle into the All-Ireland SHC semi-finals.

It was nip and tuck between the Déise and Wexford at the redeveloped Cork stadium until Moran scampered on to Shane Bennett's pass to drill the sliotar low to the net.

That gave his team a five-point cushion at the break which they would not relinquish, eventually closing out a 1-23 to 1-19 success.

It's the third year on the bounce Derek McGrath's men have reached the last four, and Moran was quick to praise the collective as he reflected on the raucous noise and colour of the new-look Páirc.

"It was fantastic," Moran told RTÉ Sport.

"Everything about it, top-class facilities, top class.

"The atmosphere, it's what players want to play in. It was a really enjoyable day for us all. That's what it's all about.

"It's a 20-man game. Everyone's going out and giving it their all for as long as they can.

"Obviously you have to try and bring freshness to the team for I suppose the important part of the game, the last 15, 20 minutes.

"The boys have been great, coming off the bench and doing their role. It's a 50-man squad between back-room team and everyone involved. It's for everybody. Everyone involved has put an awful lot of work in."

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Waterford took some heavy criticism after the Munster semi-final loss to Cork last month, but they responded by carving a path through the qualifiers and ultimately to within 70 minutes of an All-Ireland final.

Moran admitted they had to go to the well to respond to that setback, but piled praise on the response as he savoured a hard-earned win. 

"You take every game as it comes. Since the Cork game, it was a tough road back to where we are now, but we're over the moon.

"Three good games, three wins. We're delighted to be back in an All-Ireland semi-final. Wexford are a very tough team to beat; we're thrilled to get over the line."