Thursday 22 August 2019

Corbett leads by example to end Limerick's seven-year itch

Limerick 3-11 Tipperary 1-10

Iain Corbett of Limerick celebrates after scoring his side's first goal. Photo: Sportsfile
Iain Corbett of Limerick celebrates after scoring his side's first goal. Photo: Sportsfile
Limerick midfield partners Tommie Childs, left, and Darragh Treacy celebrate after the match. Photo: Sportsfile

Iain Corbett scored 1-2 as Limerick stunned Tipperary to get their first championship win in seven years. Limerick were the better side in the first half but had to settle for a 0-8 to 0-8 scoreline at the break.

However, captain Corbett scored the crucial goal shortly after half-time in front of the 2,165 crowd, and then Cillian Fahy and Peter Nash hit goals either side of Michael Quinlivan's finish for Tipperary.

Jamie Lee's free put Limerick ahead on three minutes and Adrian Enright doubled the lead. Quinlivan got in behind for Tipp's first goal chance, but he opted to fist over. Conor Sweeney added a free and then Steven O'Brien put Tipp in front.

Corbett broke forward from centre-back and almost hit the net in the 16th minute. He had to settle for a point and that was cancelled out by Sweeney.

But Limerick scored three points in a row in a dominant six-minute spell, through Enright, Lee and Sean McSweeney (free), for a two-point advantage.

Liam Casey cut the gap before Lee added his third of the half, another outstanding effort from play, and frees from Sweeney and Liam McGrath brought Tipperary back level in the 32nd minute.

Cillian Fahy fisted a point for Limerick but Quinlivan's second point meant the teams went in level at the interval.

Corbett's point on the resumption was exquisite and it served as inspiration for his Limerick teammates, and his goal was even better. Neither team had scored for 11 minutes but when Darragh Treacy looked to be running out of room, Corbett appeared on his shoulder and blasted into the top corner.

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It got even better in the 57th minute when Lee's shot dropped short only for Fahy to claim possession and drive his shot into the roof of the Tipp goal.

Limerick were 2-9 to 0-8 in front and after Sweeney's response, from a free, Lee extended the Limerick lead again.

Fahy added another point but Quinlivan placed a brilliant finish low past Donal O'Sullivan to give Tipp belief.

However, substitute Nash killed off the Tipperary challenge with a goal in the 69th minute to secure a shock win as the Munster SFC opened with a bang.

Scorers - Limerick: I Corbett, C Fahy 1-2 each, J Lee 0-4 (1f), P Nash 1-0, A Enright 0-2, S McSweeney 0-1 (0-1f), Tipperary: M Quinlivan 1-2, C Sweeney 0-4 (3f), L McGrath 0-2 (2f), S O'Brien, Liam Casey 0-1 each.

Limerick: D O'Sullivan; B Fanning, S O'Dea, P Maher; C McSweeney, I Corbett, G Brown; D Treacy, T Childs; A Enright, C Fahy, M Fitzgibbon; S McSweeney, S O'Carroll, J Lee. Subs: P Nash for Lee (62), S Keeley for Enright (70), P De Brún for Fitzgibbon (70).

Tipperary: E Comerford; A Campbell, J Meagher, S O'Connell; K Fahey, R Kiely, E Moloney; S O'Brien, L Casey; J Keane, P Maher, B Fox; C Sweeney, M Quinlivan, L McGrath.

Subs: B Maher for Kiely (h-t), L Boland for Maher (h-t), J Kennedy for Keane (49), D Brennan for Fahey (58), D O'Meara for Fox (66), J Feehan for Meagher (72).

Ref: J Molloy (Galway).

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