A disputed goal just before half time and a pointed free from Barry Brogan with the last kick of the game gave Tipperary a deserved draw over a below-par Down in this game in Newry on Saturday.
The Munster side showed great composure, skill and that little bit of extra fitness as twice they came from behind when all seemed lost. Down did perform well at times, but lacked the commitment of Tipp and often gave away possession needlessly.
Down opened strongly and built up a 0-7 to 0-2 lead thanks to good work at the back from Kevin McKernan, James Colgan and Conor Garvey and accuracy up front from Martin and John Clarke and Conor Laverty.
Laverty lobbed over three of the Down points, while Martin Clarke pointed two frees and John Clarke and Conor Maginn had points from play, while Conor Sweeney scored both of Tipperary points from frees.
The Premier County finally awoke and came storming back into the game with points from Brian Coen Philip Austin, Christy Aylward and another Sweeney free. When a long range free by Austin was misfielded by Down defender James Colgan there was a scramble in the goal area and the umpire signaled a goal after Coen stabbed the ball to the net to leave Tipperary a point to the good, 1-6 to 0-8, at half time.
Three Down points to one by Tipperary in the 10 minutes after the restart saw Down regain the lead and when Martin and John Clarke pointed, they had established a three- point lead with 70 minutes played. Tipperary, however, impressively managed to salvage a point in injury time thanks to a pointed free from Sweeney and two points, one of them the leveller, from the hero Brogan.
Scorers -- Down: M Clarke 0-5 (0-4 f), C Laverty, J Clarke
0-3 each, P McComiskey 0-2 (0-2f), C Maginn 0-1 Tipperary: B Coen 1-1 (0-1f), C Sweeney 0-5 (0-4f), B Brogan 0-2f, C Aylward 0-2, P Austin 0-1
Down -- B McVeigh; D McCartan, B McArdle, D Rafferty; K McKernan, J Colgan, C Garvey; A Rodgers, K King; C Maginn, M Clarke, P McComiskey; C Laverty, J Clarke, B Coulter
Subs: P Fitzpatrick for K King (ht); S Kearney for C Maginn (40), M Poland for C Laverty (60); G McCartan for P McComiskey (67)
Tipperary -- P Fitzgerald; N Curran, C McDonald, A Morrissey; C Awlyard, R Costigan, C McGrath; G Hannigan, S Grogan; B Mulvihill, P Austin Cagney; C Sweeney, B Coen, B Brogan
Subs: S Hahessy for B Coen (ht); S Carey for J Cagney (42); P Acheson for P Austin (54); A Rockett for S Grogan (67)
Ref --J Curley (Meath)