| 22°C Dublin

Goals from Noonan and Finn help Cork into decider

Cork 2-11 Donegal 0-11

Close

Cork players, from left, Eimear Meaney, Ashling Hutchings, and Eimear Scally celebrate. Photo: Sportsfile

Cork players, from left, Eimear Meaney, Ashling Hutchings, and Eimear Scally celebrate. Photo: Sportsfile

Cork players, from left, Eimear Meaney, Ashling Hutchings, and Eimear Scally celebrate. Photo: Sportsfile

Cork manager Ephie Fitzgerald praised his side's defensive discipline on Saturday at Dr Hyde Park as they kept Donegal at arm's length to set up a hotly-anticipated TG4 All-Ireland senior ladies football final against Dublin on September 16.

Goals from Orla Finn and Saoirse Noonan paved the way for Cork's victory, while Player of the Match Doireann O'Sullivan landed three crucial, long-range scores as they struggled to break through Donegal's tight defensive screen.

Close

Cork's Orla Finn palms the ball to the net for her side's first goal. Photo: Sportsfile

Cork's Orla Finn palms the ball to the net for her side's first goal. Photo: Sportsfile

Cork's Orla Finn palms the ball to the net for her side's first goal. Photo: Sportsfile

The Ulster champions looked to be off the pace in the opening half, but the scoring threat of Karen Guthie kept them in touch at the break, while Geraldine McLaughlin's four points after the restart meant Maxi Curran's side were always a threat.

However, a 1-3 haul off the bench from talented youngster Noonan meant Donegal could not pull closer than three points and the record winners worked their way back into the final after a year's absence.

Determined

"We are absolutely thrilled. It was disappointing last year, we lost a close semi-final and we were determined this year that we'd go one step further," said Cork manager Fitzgerald. "I must compliment our backs because we were under a lot of pressure."

Close

Cork's Shauna Kelly of Cork in action against Donegal's Sarah Jane McDonald. Photo: Sportsfile

Cork's Shauna Kelly of Cork in action against Donegal's Sarah Jane McDonald. Photo: Sportsfile

Cork's Shauna Kelly of Cork in action against Donegal's Sarah Jane McDonald. Photo: Sportsfile

Cork got off to a flying start, but Donegal hit back. A palmed Finn goal after 18 minutes was a crucial score and after a handful of poor first-half wides Donegal never got back in touch.

"I think we probably missed too many scoring opportunities and kicked too many wides and squandered possession inside the '45'. I think that will probably be the biggest tale of today," said Donegal manager Curran.

After trailing 1-6 to 0-5 at half-time, Donegal came out of their shells and were well in contention by the 37th minute, but Noonan made a real impact.

She kicked three frees and Doireann O'Sullivan's point with 11 minutes remaining maintained their advantage, before Noonan blasted her sixth goal of the summer with two minutes to go.

Close

Dublin's Carla Rowe battles with Cork's Melissa Duggan. Photo: Sportsfile

Dublin's Carla Rowe battles with Cork's Melissa Duggan. Photo: Sportsfile

Dublin's Carla Rowe battles with Cork's Melissa Duggan. Photo: Sportsfile

GAA Newsletter

Exclusives from under the skin of the GAA, from Ireland’s largest and best GAA team; Brolly, Mullane, Hogan and Ó Sé, to name but a few.

This field is required

"The two goals were the difference," said Fitzgerald. "I won't say we were comfortable, but I thought we were the better team, in the sense that we always had a lead and they never really looked like taking it off us."

Scorers - Cork: O Finn (3f), S Noonan (3f) 1-3 each, D O'Sullivan 0-3, E Scally 0-2

Donegal: G McLaughlin 0-5 (2f), K Guthrie 0-4 (1f), K Herron, Y Bonner 0-1 each

Cork - M O'Brien; R Phelan, E Meaney, M Duggan; S Kelly, A Hutchings, M O'Callaghan; D O'Sullivan, H Looney; A O'Sullivan, C O'Sullivan (c), E Spillane; L Coppinger, E Scally, O Finn Subs: O Farmer for Finn (36), S Noonan for A O'Sullivan (36), O Finn for Hutchings (47)

Close

Cork manager Ephie Fitzgerald. Photo: Sportsfile

Cork manager Ephie Fitzgerald. Photo: Sportsfile

Cork manager Ephie Fitzgerald. Photo: Sportsfile

Donegal - L Gallagher; T Doherty, N McLaughlin, T McCafferty; D Foley, K Keaney, C Hegarty; AM McGlynn, O McCaffrey; K Herron, N Hegarty, SJ McDonald; K Guthrie (c), Y Bonner, G McLaughlin Subs: A McDonnell for McCafferty (23), E Ward for N Hegarty (43), A Boyle Carr for Keaney (48), N Hegarty for McGlynn (50)

Ref - B Rice (Down)


Most Watched





Privacy