Supporting role works wonders for Gary McCabe
Shamrock Rovers 2 Cork City 1
GARY McCABE, two-goal hero for Shamrock Rovers, won't moan about playing out of position.
The decision of manager Trevor Croly to recall McCabe in a supporting role to main striker Tommy Stewart worked a treat at Tallaght Stadium.
Both of the attacker's goals came in a first half dominated by the fifth-placed Hoops.
In the ninth minute, Stewart swivelled in the box before crossing the ball for McCabe to side-foot it home.
The second arrived on 24 minutes when Shane Robinson and Billy Dennehy combined to put McCabe clear on goal and he finished coolly from 10 yards.
As has been Rovers' downfall this season, they failed to kill off this tie and allowed Cork a way back with a 68th-minute goal.
Gary Buckley connected perfectly with Ian Turner's corner to power his header home and that made for a nervous finish for the home team and their supporters.
McCabe felt Rovers deserved their third win on the spin and is hoping that his contribution will earn him a starting place for Friday's FAI Cup quarter-final against league leaders St Patrick's Athletic.
"Playing behind the striker is not my natural position but I seem to get goals every time I play there," McCabe said. "Maybe it's something I can look at now for the future.
"Rovers are the biggest club in the country, there's a big squad so you are going to be in and out of the team. You just have to deal with it but hopefully I can stay in now."
SHAMROCK ROVERS – Murphy; Sullivan, Oman, Elebert, Powell; Ryan (Rice 82), Robinson; Finn, McCabe, Dennehy (O'Connor 71); Stewart.
CORK CITY – McNulty; Horgan, Murray, Buckley, Murphy; Morrissey, Duggan (Lenihan 59), Dunleavy (Healy 46), Horgan; Kenny (Turner 46), D Morrissey
Ref – R Rogers (Dublin)