Cork's firepower and physicality was too much for hosts Leitrim as the Rebels ran out comfortable nine-point winners at Avantcard Páirc Seán MhicDiarmada in Carrick-on-Shannon yesterday.
Both counties had first-half goalscoring opportunities which they spurned. The introduction of Luke Connolly in the 29th minute was to have a major impact on this duel.
There was only two points between the sides on his introduction. He announced his arrival with a 32nd-minute point and before the break Ciarán Sheehan's goal propelled the Rebels into a 1-7 to 0-3 lead.
Both sides traded points in the opening ten minutes of the second half. Connolly was sin-binned in the 41st minute but the home side failed to take advantage of their numerical supremacy.
Leitrim were also guilty of poor use of possession and gifted up possession to their opponents on a number of occasions and were duly punished by the slicker Munster side.
In the heavy conditions Leitrim tired as the game wore on with Cork's greater conditioning evident.
The influential Connolly scored four unanswered points in the closing stages to bring his personal tally to 0-5 (including one free and one mark) as Ronan McCarthy's men cruised to their nine-point triumph.
SCORERS - Cork: C Sheehan 1-3; L Connolly 0-5 (1f, 1m); C O'Mahony 0-3 (1f); T Clancy, T Corkery, P Kerrigan, S White 0-1 each. Leitrim: K Beirne 0-7 (5f); R Mulvey, E Sweeney 0-1 each.
CORK - M Martin 7; S Powter 7, T Clancy 7, L O'Donovan 7; T Corkery 7, K Crowley 7, M Taylor 7; I Maguire 7, B Hartnett 8; J O'Rourke 7, S White 7, R Deane 8; M Hurley 7, C Sheehan 8, C O'Mahony 8. Subs: L Connolly 8 for Hurley (29), K O'Driscoll 7 for O'Rourke (55). P Kerrigan 7 for O'Mahony (55). C Kiely 7 for Powter (58), R Harkins for Sheehan (67).
LEITRIM - D McKiernan 8; C Reynolds 6, F McTague 6, P Maguire 7; A Flynn 6, J Gilheany 6, C McGloin 6; D Wrynn 6, S Moran 6; S Quinn 7, D McGovern 7, D Flynn 6; O McCaffrey 6, D Rooney 6, K Beirne 8. Subs: R Mulvey 7 for McTague (39), P Dolan 6 for McCaffrey (44). E Sweeney 6 for Rooney (51), R O'Rourke 6 for Gilheaney (54), O McLoughlin 6 for Moran (66).
REF - P Maguire (Longford)