Wednesday 18 October 2017

Sheehan strike rescues replay in Rebels’rally in thrilling Munster minor hurling semi-final

Tipperary 2-18 Cork 1-21

EVAN SHEEHAN salvaged a draw for Cork with a goal from a 20-metre free in the third minute of stoppage-time
EVAN SHEEHAN salvaged a draw for Cork with a goal from a 20-metre free in the third minute of stoppage-time

Jackie Cahill

EVAN SHEEHAN salvaged a draw for Cork with a goal from a 20-metre free in the third minute of stoppage-time – at the end of extra-time – in a gripping Electric Ireland Munster minor hurling semi-final at Semple Stadium.

In a game of so many twists and turns, Sheehan had the final say to ensure that the sides will have to do it all over again tomorrow afternoon at Páirc Uí Rinn, with a 1.0 throw-in.

In the second half of normal time, Cork came from six points down to level in the fourth minute of stoppage-time, Robert Downey on target.

Tipp then looked to have won it when Jake Morris pointed but that man Downey responded again as the sides finished level at 0-16 to 1-13, Ray McCormack on target with the first-half goal for the hosts.

Tipp had gone 21 minutes of playing time without a score before Morris ended the drought and they kicked on in the first period of extra-time, with sub Darragh Woods scoring two points, cancelled out by points from Cork’s Declan Hanlon and Daire Connery.

Woods, introduced as a sub at the end of normal time, would end up scoring 1-4 of Tipp’s 1-5 in extra-time but even

though the reigning Munster and All-Ireland champions moved into a three-point lead with time running out, Sheehan stepped up to ensure a replay.

Woods profited in the 78th minute, following Ger Collins’ goalkeeping error, for Tipp’s second goal. That score

turned a one-point deficit into a two point lead but Brian Turnbull, Cork’s leading scorer on the night, reduced the deficit to the minimum again.

Tipp, playing the second period of extra-time with the breeze, responded with points from Woods and fellow sub Willie Barry, to lead by 2-18 to 1-21.

Incredibly, there was still time for one last twist and when Cork were awarded a late, late free, Sheehan somehow managed to beat five Tipperary players on the line, as the sliotar nestled in the Killinan End net.

Before all of that drama, wind-assisted Tipp led by 1-7 to 0-8 at half-time in normal time, as McCormack’s 28th-minute goal gave the hosts a real confidence boost before the break.

With less than ten minutes on the watch, Cork led by 0-4 to 0-2, before Tipp full-forward Anthony McKelvey flashed a goal chance across the face of goal and wide.

But with Turnbull threatening almost every time the ball came his way, Cork had the edge and were three points up, 0-7 to 0-4, by the 18th minute.

The visitors would not score again until stoppage-time, however, and Tipp hit 1-3 without reply, but Connery added a point for Cork to keep them in touch at the interval. The scene was set for a remarkable second half – and much more.

SCORERS – Tipperary: A McKelvey 0-8 (7fs), D Woods 1-4 (0-2fs), Ray McCormack 1-0, P Cadell 0-3, J Morris 0-2, W Barry 0-1. Cork: B Turnbull 0-9 (5fs), D Connery 0-7 (5fs), E Sheehan 1-0f, R Downey 0-2, D Linehan, L O’Shea, D Hanlon 0-1 each.

TIPPERARY–ECollins; KBreen, MFeehan,MPurcell; RQuirke, C Morgan, B O’Mara; J Cahill, P Cadell; C Bowe, J Morris, R McCormack; NHoctor, AMcKelvey,CBourke. Subs: AOrmonde for Bourke (37), K McCarthy for Hoctor (58), B Seymour for O’Mara (60+1), D Woods for Ormonde (60+3), O’Mara for Bowe (60), E Connolly for Quirke (60), Bowe for McKelvey (69), W Barry for McCormack (74).

CORK – G Collins; C O’Callaghan, S O’Leary-Hayes, E Roche; J Keating, GMillerick, RHowell; DConnery, DLenihan; CHanafin, L O’Shea, B Roche; E Sheehan, R Downey, B Turnbull. Subs: A Walsh Barry for Howell(30),B Murphy for O’Shea(38), CO’Brien for Hanafin(47),D Hanlon for Sheehan(50),O’Shea for Murphy (64), D Jones for O’Brien (70),

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