Forde leads rout of Rebels as Tipp storm into decider
Tipperary 5-19 Cork 2-13
KEN Hogan's Tipperary demolished Cork by 15 points in the Bord Gáis Energy Munster U-21 hurling championship semi-final at Semple Stadium.
Last year's beaten provincial finalists ran riot in the second half to set up a final meeting with Clare or Waterford on August 7.
Senior star Jason Forde led the scoring charge as the Silvermines youngster notched 2-8.
Full-forward Bill Walsh was also on target with two goals for Tipp as the hosts devastated Cork with a blistering scoring run after the break.
The Rebels trailed by 10 points – 2-9 to 0-5 – approaching half-time before a run of six points without reply kept them in touch at the break. And the visitors were back within a point when substitute Mark Sugrue netted a 32nd-minute goal.
But Tipp's response was emphatic as the Premier County, powered forward by captain and man of the match Niall O'Meara, registered an unanswered 2-8 to regain complete control.
Walsh notched his second goal in the 40th minute before Forde found the net from a penalty five minutes later. Forde and Justin Cahill added points to put Tipp 14 points clear – 4-16 to 1-11 – before senior star and Cork captain Christopher Joyce stopped the rot.
But Tipp responded strongly again as Tommy Heffernan scored a fifth goal for the rampant hosts, to ensure that all six starting forwards were now on the scoresheet.
Cian Buckley scored a consolation goal for Cork in the 58th minute but this was a disappointing fade-out from the Leesiders, who had worked so hard to give themselves real hope early in the second half.
Tipp had opened the game with real intent, in front of 2,911 spectators at Semple Stadium, with Walsh netting in the third minute, after taking Tomás Hamill's pass.
And Hogan's charges were in cruise control by the 22nd minute when Forde scored the first of his two goals.
The senior panellist had options either side of him as he burst through on goal but he elected to go it alone and it proved a smart choice as the flame-haired hitman dropped the sliotar and whipped on it to find the back of the net.
Scorers – Tipperary: J Forde 2-8 (1-0 pen, 0-6fs), B Walsh 2-1, N O'Meara 0-4, T Heffernan 1-0, L McGrath 0-2, J Cahill, B Stapleton, A McCormack and J McGrath 0-1 each. Cork: M Sugrue 1-1, J Coughlan 0-4 (3fs, 1 '65'), C Buckley 1-0, R O'Shea 0-3, B Murray 0-2, C Joyce, C Lehane, J Wall 0-1 each.
TIPPERARY – D Mooney; C Barrett, A Ryan, M Breen; S Kennedy, T Hamill, J O'Dwyer; J Cahill, B Stapleton; J Forde, N O'Meara, T Heffernan; L McGrath, B Walsh, A McCormack. Subs: J McGrath for McCormack (35), C O'Riordan for L McGrath (50), C Kenny for Walsh (55).
CORK – P Collins, C Spillane, P O'Mahony, D Lester; D O'Mahony, C Joyce, D Cahalane; R O'Shea, B Murray; D Lordan, J Coughlan, C Lehane; A Cadogan, J Wall, B Hartnett. Subs: M Sugrue for Lordan (27), N Kelly for Cadogan (38), S Murphy for P O'Mahony (44), K Kavanagh for Murray (50), C Buckley for Hartnett (53).
REF– S Hourigan (Limerick).