Cork 2-24 Tipperary 1-25
Cork survived a late Tipperary rally to claim a first win in the National League at Páirc Uí Chaoimh. A late penalty by Tipperary goalkeeper Brian Hogan brought the visitors to within a point of their rivals, having trailed for most of the second half, but Seamus Harnedy made the points safe with a last score deep into injury-time.
The game finished with what looked a serious injury to John O'Dwyer which led to an extended stoppage time. When play resumed there was a flashpoint with Cork manager Kieran Kingston reacting furiously to an off the ball incident that left Alan Cadogan on the deck. Despite that late rise in the temperature, much of the match was played without rancour, and lacked genuine intensity.
After losing on the opening night to Limerick, Tipperary made just one change, including Cian Darcy in their attack but continuing to hold Seamus Callanan in the traps, before bringing him on in the second half.
Darcy scored two points before going off injured, replaced by Callanan. Mark Kehoe finished with four points and was taken down for the penalty in the 67th minute which Hogan slammed home.
Patrick Collins, preferred to long-standing custodian Anthony Nash, impressed in goal for Cork, a smart save denying Niall O'Meara before the penalty award. Robbie O'Flynn and Alan Cadogan also stood out, with Cadogan scoring four points and setting up two more. O'Flynn scored 1-3 and set up a late first-half penalty for Patrick Horgan. Cork's freetaker finished on 1-9, all bar one point from placed balls, another consummate display of striking from the veteran forward.
In ideal conditions, mild with no significant wind, the game began on a low gear and stayed that way for much of the remainder. Players enjoyed the kind of room they won't be having in a few months' time. So the points kept flowing.
They were level twice in the early stages, Tipp twice coming from behind, before Cork stepped on the accelerator and opened a five-point advantage after 15 minutes, 1-7 to 0-5. Cadogan had three points in the first half, while centre forward O'Flynn finished with 1-2 and was also fouled by Seán O'Brien for Horgan's penalty in first-half injury-time, struck low to the corner, leaving the home team with a somewhat flattering interval lead of 2-13 to 0-15.
The first goal, from O'Flynn in the 11th minute, went in at Hogan's near post, a concession a goalkeeper of his calibre would not be expected to be allowing. Tipp had sneaked in front a minute before with John McGrath carrying on the good form of the previous weekend, and Paddy Cadell hitting two fine scores, but after the goal Cork hit three points without reply.
From five down, Tipp's response was impressive. They hit the next five scores, with Jason Forde having his first free in the 16th minute, followed by a brilliant strike by Forde that split the posts from out on the sideline, and further points from Kehoe, McGrath and Ronan Maher, with a free from his own 45. Kehoe finished the first half with three points but the marking at times was incredibly lax.
Having been reeled in, Cork restored their lead with a first score in 12 minutes, from Cadogan. Paudie Maher joined in the fun with two first half points, the second restoring Tipp's lead in added time. But Cork replied with 1-1, the penalty from Horgan and an excellent point from Darragh Fitzgibbon preceding it.
Twenty minutes into the second half, Cork still led, 2-18 to 0-21, with the hurling becoming marginally more physical and Fitzgibbon starting to exert an influence.
Horgan's influence also grew, as he landed a number frees from the next parish. Tipp's free opportunities were extremely limited and Forde finished with just three scored from dead balls.
Tipp trailed throughout the second half and after a late goal chance, a whipped groundstroke by John McGrath, flashed over the bar, they finally hit the net when Hogan rifled home a penalty with two minutes of normal time remaining, to leave only a point between the sides and set up a tense finish.
Scorers - Cork: P Horgan 1-9 (0-8f, 1-0 pen), R O'Flynn 1-3, A Cadogan 0-4, D Fitzgibbon, S Harnedy 0-2, A Walsh, D Cahalane, L Meade, M Coleman 0-1. Tipperary: J Forde (0-3f), M Kehoe, J McGrath 0-4 each, B Hogan 1-0 (pen), P Maher 0-3, P Cadell, C Darcy, J Morris 0-2 each, A Flynn, R Maher (f), N O'Meara, J Cahill 0-1.
Cork: P Collins; C Spillane, S O'Donoghue, R Downey; C O'Leary, T O'Mahony, B Cooper; D Cahalane, L Meade; S Harnedy, R O'Flynn, A Walsh; A Cadogan, D Dalton, P Horgan. Subs: D Fitzgibbon for Walsh (inj 22); M Coleman for O'Mahoney (inj 26); C Lehane for Dalton (47); S Kingston for Meade (62).
Tipperary: B Hogan; J O'Dwyer, R Maher, S O'Brien; S Kennedy, P Maher, A Flynn; P Cadell, W Connors; M Kehoe, J McGrath, M Breen; J Forde, J Morris, C Darcy. Subs: J Cahill for Cadell (26); N O'Meara for Breen (34); S Callana for Darcy (inj 48); B O'Mara for Kennedy (53); J O'Dwyer for Forde (64); P Flynn for O'Dwyer (inj 77).
Referee: J Owens (Wexford)
Sunday Indo Sport