Fintan O’Toole (The 42.ie)
Photo Courtesy of George Hatchell
AFTER OPENING WEEKEND reversals in the hurling league, the focus tonight in Páirc Uí Chaoimh was on who could rebound best.
It took over 80 minutes before a result was delivered, the additional time due to a lengthy hold-up late on for treatment to Tipperary substitute John O’Dwyer. He shipped a heavy blow but there was good post-match news that he had not suffered a severe injury.
When time was called in front of a crowd of 9,821 it was Cork who had the scoreboard cushion that delivered the victory. The first night of February brought a contest that crackled to life during the second half as Tipperary mounted an assault on Cork’s advantage.
The opening half goals that Cork had plundered enable them to keep Tipperary at arm’s length while Patrick Collins did well in his net-minding duties for Cork. He was beaten by a rocket to the net in the 68th minute from a penalty by his opposite number Brian Hogan but the Ballinhassig man dealt capably with a few other scenarios where Tipperary threatened to raise green flags.
Cork’s attacking additions made a critical impact in the opening period. Alan Cadogan popped over 0-3 and Robbie O’Flynn contributed 1-2. The pair linked up to telling effect in the 11th minute, Cadogan turning his man and popping a handpass that released O’Flynn, the Erins Own man drilling in a shot that went past Brian Hogan at his near post.
O’Flynn was centrally involved in the second Cork goal as well on the cusp of half-time. Ronan Maher was caught in possession by a mixture of the tenacity of Declan Dalton and Seamus Harnedy, O’Flynn seized the break and charged through before being dragged down. Patrick Horgan smashed home the resultant penalty and Cork went in 2-13 to 0-15 to the good at the break.
Those scoring salvos were important in pushing Cork clear and came from two of their brightest attackers on the night. Horgan’s free-taking was vital in the second half while Darragh Fitzgibbon stepped up to make a fine impact when brought on.
Tipperary had their own emerging attacker with Mark Kehoe on song from the start. He snapped over three points in the first half and added another after the interval. At different times their established names of Padraic Maher and John McGrath influenced the course the game was taking.
Tipperary were ahead 0-15 to 1-11 approaching the interval but they shipped 1-2 in the time frame before they entered their dressing-room at the midway mark. That was a scenario they never recovered from despite their best attempts to overhaul Cork.
At various stages during the second half they got within two points of Kieran Kingston’s side but it was only after Hogan’s goal that Tipperary were within the minimum, 2-23 to 1-25. Then came that nasty looking injury to O’Dwyer and the game was stalled. When it resumed there was only one further score, Seamus Harnedy flighting over for Cork and a levelling score eluded Liam Sheedy’s men.
Scorers for Cork: Patrick Horgan 1-9 (0-8f, 1-0 pen), Robbie O’Flynn 1-3, Alan Cadogan 0-4, Seamus Harnedy, Darragh Fitzgibbon 0-2 each, Luke Meade, Damien Cahalane, Mark Coleman, Aidan Walsh 0-1 each.
Scorers for Tipperary: Mark Kehoe, John McGrath, Jason Forde (0-3f) 0-4 each, Brian Hogan 1-0 (1-0 pen), Padraic Maher 0-3, Jake Morris, Paddy Cadell, Cian Darcy 0-2 each, Alan Flynn, Ronan Maher (0-1f), Niall O’Meara, Jerome Cahill 0-1 each.
1. Patrick Collins (Ballinhassig)
2. Colm Spillane (Castlelyons)
3. Robert Downey (Glen Rovers)
4. Sean O’Donoghue (Inniscarra)
5. Chris O’Leary (Valley Rovers)
6. Tim O’Mahony (Newtownshandrum)
7. Damien Cahalane (St Finbarr’s)
8. Bill Cooper (Youghal)
9. Luke Meade (Newcestown)
10. Robbie O’ Flynn (Erin’s Own)
11. Seamus Harnedy (St Ita’s)
12. Aidan Walsh (Kanturk)
13. Alan Cadogan (Douglas)
14. Declan Dalton (Fr O’Neills)
15. Patrick Horgan (Glen Rovers – captain)
21. Darragh Fitzgibbon (Charleville) for Walsh (inj) (21)
20. Mark Coleman (Blarney) for O’Mahony (inj) (26)
24. Conor Lehane (Midleton) for Dalton (46)
22. Shane Kingston (Douglas) for Meade (61)
1. Brian Hogan (Lorrha-Dorrha)
23. Joe O’Dwyer (Killenaule)
3. Ronan Maher (Thurles Sarsfields)
4. Seán O’Brien (Newport)
5. Séamus Kennedy (St. Mary’s)
6. Padraic Maher (Thurles Sarsfields)
7. Paddy Cadell (JK Brackens)
8. Alan Flynn (Kiladangan)
9. Willie Connors (Kiladangan)
10. John McGrath (Loughmore-Castleiney)
11. Cian Darcy (Kilruane MacDonaghs)
12. Michael Breen (Ballina)
13. Mark Kehoe (Kilsheelan-Kilcash)
14. Jason Forde (Silvermines)
15. Jake Morris (Nenagh Éire Óg)
17. Jerome Cahill (Kilruane MacDonaghs) for Cadell (inj) (26)
25. Niall O’Meara (Kilruane MacDonaghs) for Breen (33)
18. Séamus Callanan (Drom-Inch) for Darcy (46)
24. Bryan O’Mara (Holycross-Ballycahill) for Kennedy (53)
2. John O’Dwyer (Killenaule) for Forde (64)
19. Paul Flynn (Kiladangan) for John O’Dwyer (blood) (77)
Referee:James Owens (Wexford)