Allianz FL D2: Tipp too good for Cork
Allianz Football League Division 2
TIPPERARY 3-16 CORK 1-16
By Denis Hurley at Pairc Ui Chaoimh
A dominant period midway through the second half was critical as Tipperary got their Allianz FL Division 2 campaign off to a winning start at Páirc Uí Chaoimh on Saturday evening.
Cork began with six debutants while Tipp had none, and that experience came to bear as the visitors established a 0-4 to 0-1 lead in the opening nine minutes.
After Steven O’Brien’s opener for Tipp was cancelled out by Seán White for Cork, Tipp made use of the wind behind them as Liam McGrath, Michael Quinlivan with a ‘45 and Jack Kennedy all pointed, while Josh Keane drew a good save from one of the Cork new boys, goalkeeper Mark White, brother of Seán.
Seán White got his and his county’s second point on ten minutes and, after Ruairí Deane fisted home a disallowed goal, Cork added another five points without reply.
Mark Collins, playing in a two-man inside forward line with Stephen Sherlock, had three while John O’Rourke also got on the scoresheet.
When another Cork debutant, Daniel O’Callaghan, set up Ruairí Deane for a point on the half-hour, the home side were three to the good, 0-9 to 0-6, but Tipp responded as Kennedy landed a long-range free and then Liam Boland got on the scoresheet.
In injury time, Cork had a great chance to extend their advantage when O’Callaghan’s delivery broke nicely for Seán Powter, who would have had a goal chance but for Robbie Kiely’s illegal challenge.
Unfortunately for the hosts, Sherlock’s penalty was well saved by Tipp goalkeeper Evan Comerford, playing his first game for the county since incurring a 12-week ban during the 2017 campaign.
Sherlock showed that he wasn’t affected by the miss as he began the second half with two points, but Tipp were building momentum and, after Liam McGrath and Mark Collins exchanged points, they scored an unanswered 2-4 to open up a 2-13 to 0-12 lead.
McGrath and Quinlivan had the goals while Conor Sweeney almost netted too, his shot coming back off the crossbar. That was just before McGrath’s strike, set up by Quinlivan, made it 1-10 to 0-12 and further points from Sweeney and Brian Fox had them three in front.
Then Josh Keane forced a turnover to create the chance which Quinlivan beautifully finished with a curling shot past Mark White and another from Sweeney had them seven in front.
Cork ended their drought when sub Colm O’Neill was able to palm home from close range after Ruairí Deane’s handpass set him up, and O’Neill created a similar chance for Sherlock but he hit the post.
O’Neill and Sherlock had points as Cork came back to within two but McGrath gave Tipp breathing space again to bring his tally to 1-5 and then got his second and their third goal with two minutes left to out the outcome beyond doubt.
Scorers for Tipperary: Liam McGrath 2-5 (0-2 frees), Michael Quinlivan 1-2 (0-1 45), Jack Kennedy (0-2 frees), Conor Sweeney (0-1f) 0-3 each, Liam Boland, Brian Fox, Steven O’Brien 0-1 each.
*Scorers for Cork: *Stephen Sherlock (0-3 frees), Mark Collins (0-1 free) 0-5 each, Colm O’Neill 1-1 (0-1 free), Seán White 0-2, John O’Rourke, Seán Powter, Ruairi Deane 0-1 each.
TIPPERARY: Evan Comerford; Shane O’Connell, Jimmy Feehan, Emmet Moloney; Bill Maher, Alan Campbell, Robbie Kiely; Steven O’Brien, Jack Kennedy; Josh Keane, Conor Sweeney, Brian Fox; Liam Boland, Michael Quinlivan, Liam McGrath. Subs: Liam Casey for Boland (half-time), John Meagher for Feehan (43), Kevin Fahey for Kiely (62), Brendan Martin for McGrath, Colm O’Shaughnessy for O’Connell, George Hannigan for O’Brien (all 70).
CORK: *Mark White; Sam Ryan, Jamie O’Sullivan, Micheál McSweeney; Kevin Flahive, Kevin Crowley, Brian O’Driscoll; Ian Maguire, Daniel O’Callaghan; Seán White, Seán Powter, Ruairí Deane; John O’Rourke, Mark Collins, Stephen Sherlock. *Subs: Colm O’Neill for Powter (47), Killian O’Hanlon for O’Callaghan (50), Michael Hurley for O’Rourke (53), Tomás Clancy for O’Driscoll (58), Kevin O’Driscoll for Seán White (65), Conor Dorman for Maguire (66, injured).
Referee: Pádraig O’Sullivan (Kerry).