Eoghan Cahill led the scoring at Croke Park with 0-13 as free scoring Offaly delivered on their pre-tournament favourites tag to claim the Christy Ring Cup title at their ease.

Promotion back to the Joe McDonagh Cup for 2022 was the big prize that Offaly were chasing and they secured it in style, striking a whopping 41 points and leaving hurling historians reaching for the record books.

Cahill struck all but four of his points from frees with Oisin Kelly the key forward in open play, blasting 0-07 on a day when 13 different Offaly players got on the scoresheet.

It was success at the second attempt in the competition under Michael Fennelly following Offaly's surprise semi-final defeat to Down in 2020.

They blitzed all opposition in 2021, navigating both the league and Championship with a 100% record and they can have high hopes of a strong showing in next season's McDonagh Cup.

Derry netted twice through Gerald Bradley and Odhran McKeever but were still blown away and lost corner-forward Brian Cassidy to a second booking in the 73rd minute.

Offaly approached the final with an envied perfect record, securing promotion from Division 2A with five consecutive wins and then blitzing Sligo and Wicklow in the championship.

They put 6-30 on the board against Wicklow in the semi-finals and having beat Derry by 17 points in this competition last November were tipped for another big win.

Killian Sampson dispenses a hand-pass for Offaly

Derry cancelled out two early points to level it at 0-02 apiece but Offaly then reeled off 10 points in a row, including three in a row from John Murphy, to lead by 0-12 to 0-02.

Another rout seemed likely though the quality of Offaly's play dipped in the second quarter and they merely broke even with the Ulster men in this period, 0-07 to 1-04.

The goal, crucially, came from Derry and gave them outside hope of hauling themselves back into the game.

Bradley struck it in the 22th minute, capitalising on a ball in from the right wing and striking to the net from close range, before adding a point moments later.

Offaly still led by a significant 0-19 to 1-07 at half-time but their play was becoming ragged and Murphy was berated by two forward colleagues for not passing when a goal chance opened up in the 30th minute.

Eoghan Cahill scored 0-13 as Offaly ran out 21-point winners against Derry

Offaly goalkeeper Conor Clancy was fortunate to get away with a stray puck-out five minutes after the restart too, Odhran McKeever firing the sliotar back with interest just over the bar. Clancy bizarrely did the same thing late on though McKeever fired wide on that occasion.

Still, Offaly were never in any danger of being caught on the scoreboard and extended their lead in the third quarter with a series of Cahill scores, four in a row at one stage.

Boss Fennelly rolled on his full allocation of five subs and they contributed 0-07 with veteran attacker Shane Dooley coming on and scoring 0-02.

Offaly: Conor Clancy; David King, Ciaran Burke, Paddy Delaney; Aidan Treacy (0-03), Ben Conneely (0-01), Killian Sampson (0-01); Leon Fox (0-02), Ross Ravenhill; Jason Sampson (0-01), Liam Langton (0-01), Brian Duignan; Eoghan Cahill (0-13, 0-09f), John Murphy (0-05), Oisin Kelly (0-07).

Subs: Luke O'Connor (0-02) for Langton 45, Eimhin Kelly for Fox 50, Shane Kinsella (0-02) for J Sampson 55, Shane Dooley (0-02, 0-02f) for Duignan 59, Damien Egan (0-01) for Cahill 62.

Derry: Oisin O'Doherty; Meehaul McGrath, Darragh McCloskey, Sean Cassidy; Brian McGilligan, Richie Mullan (0-01), John Mullan; Eoghan Cassidy, Cormac O'Doherty (0-05, 0-05f); Mark McGuigan, Gerald Bradley (1-01), Deaghlan Foley (0-01); Brian Cassidy (0-03), Se McGuigan, Odhran McKeever (1-01).

Subs: Shea Cassidy (0-02) for S McGuigan 46, Padhraig Nelis for E Cassidy 50, Brendan Laverty for Foley 62, Ruairi McWilliams for McCloskey 66.

Referee: Thomas Gleeson (Dublin).