Saturday 16 February 2019

1973: Barry-Murphy on the double

Cork 3-17
Galway 2-13

Martin Breheny

Martin Breheny

It holds a place in the record books as the final which produced the highest cumulative score, but then senior championship games were played over 80 minutes in the 1970-74 (inclusive) seasons.

The 1970 decider produced a high tally too (Kerry 2-19 Meath 0-18), but the 1973 version surpassed that on a day when Cork won the title for the first time since 1945. Galway should have been well warned of Cork's scoring prowess after watching them put 2-14 past Clare and then a sensational tally of 5-12 past Kerry in Munster.

They continued the goal rush against Tyrone in the All-Ireland semi-final, hitting the Ulster champions for a whopping 5-10, whereas Galway had beaten reigning champions, Offaly by 0-16 to 2-8 in the other semi-final.

This decider was always likely to be an open affair and so it proved, with Cork taking the initiative early on and while Galway responded as best they could, they were chasing a lost cause.

Jimmy Barry-Murphy, then a 19-year-old newcomer, launched the Cork blitz with a well-taken goal after two minutes and by half-time, the Munster champions were seven points ahead, 1-10 to 0-6.

The second half produced the unusually high tally of 4-14 with each side landing 2-7. A Galway revival saw them cut the margin to just three points when Tom Naughton scored a goal, but Cork's response was controlled and efficient.

A second goal by Barry-Murphy put them back in comfortable control and while Johnny Hughes pulled one back for the men from the West , it was as close as they got and the Leesiders closed out the contest with their third goal, scored by Jimmy Barrett.

Their 3-17 total was the highest in a final up to then (Dublin increased it to 5-12 against Armagh four years later), while Galway's tally of 2-13 was the highest by a losing team. Their misery was compounded by having lost a second final in three seasons and they would go on to lose a third the following year.

Cork were regarded as a team which could dominate the scene for a few years, but they lost the 1974 All-Ireland semi-final to Dublin and wouldn't win another All-Ireland until 1989 as Mick O'Dwyer's legendary Kerry team came to dominate Munster.

Cork -- B Morgan (capt); F Cogan, H Kelleher, B Murphy; KJ O'Sullivan, J Coleman, J Hartnett; D Long, D Coughlan; E Kirby, D Barron, D McCarthy; J Barry-Murphy, R Cummins, J Barrett. Subs: S Coughlan for Coleman, D Hunt for McCarthy, M Scannell for Kelleher.

Galway -- G Mitchell; J Waldron, J Cosgrove, B Colleran; L O'Neill, TJ Gilmore, J Hughes; B Joyce, J Duggan; M Burke, L Sammon (capt), M Rooney; J Coughlan, T Naughton, M Hughes. Subs: F Canavan for Coughlan, C McDonagh for Burke.

Ref -- J Moloney (Tipperary)

Att -- 73,309

Irish Independent

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