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Round-up: Wednesday's Munster U20FC action

Kerry U20 footballer, Cormac Dillon. 

Kerry U20 footballer, Cormac Dillon. 

EirGrid Munster U20FC phase 2 round 2

CORK 0-11 KERRY 1-12


By Stephen Barry

First blood to Kerry. Tomás Ó Sé’s under-20 footballers laid down a marker for a potential Munster final rematch with a four-point victory away to Cork.

Cormac Dillon kicked 1-5, including two superb 45s into a bitter gale, in this clash which served up a healthy appetiser for Saturday’s main course in Killarney.

Cork were outscored 0-6 to 0-5 playing with the elements in the second half as they never held their form after a fast start.

The Kingdom must still get a result against Tipperary, who beat Clare by six points, before their final berth is copper-fastened but they top the table, with Cork second, heading into the last round.

Luke Crowley, son of All-Ireland winner Johnny, was a late addition to the line-up but he kicked Kerry’s opening pair off his left and right, although the latter was just too high to find the net from close range. He would go on to assist a goal and a mark by half-time.

Cork were facing into the wind at SuperValu Páirc Uí Chaoimh but they pulled three points clear by the end of the opening quarter. Captain Hugh O’Connor was pushed into the edge of the square and he slotted a quartet, comprising two frees, a mark, and a sublime stutter-step point. A tremendous Aaron O’Sullivan point and another from Ed Myers made it 0-6 to 0-3.

But they wouldn’t score again before half-time. Kerry began to turn over possession at will in the middle third and restricted them to two shots in that second quarter.

Roving corner-back Gearóid Evans landed a huge curler, Tomás Kennedy converted a mark, and Dillon added a free to level.

The lead goal arrived in the 29th minute. From an Eddie Healy turnover on his own 14, Kerry countered. Crowley, who had tracked back to assist the turnover, created the goal by slipping a perfect pass for Dillon’s reverse run. He did the rest. 1-6 to 0-6 at the break.

Cork were back within one after another fine O’Connor point and a tap-over Luke O’Herlihy free.

But Kerry made light of the elements against them with some clinical kicking for the next four. Substitute Maidhí Lynch, not long on, spun one over off the outside of his boot, midfielder Healy battled through for another, and Dillon nailed two placed balls. 1-10 to 0-8 now.

O’Connor’s sixth and Evans’ second cancelled each other out before Dara Sheedy and Ross Corkery, with his first touch from a free, brought Cork within a goal.

Kerry came closer to that clincher with John Kelliher’s shot saved by Mikey O’Connell before Dillon iced it from the 45.

At Ardfinnan, Tipperary were 1-10 to 0-7 winners over Clare but it took a stoppage-time volley of scores to make it safe.

Substitutes Paddy O'Keeffe and Daithí Hogan split four points between them, including three after the fourth official's board had been raised, to put it beyond doubt.

The sides were level four times before Michael Freaney's 27th-minute goal sent the hosts in with a 1-5 to 0-5 edge.

Their wastefulness left Clare in it, with Darren Keane notching the only point of the third quarter, but they found the target for a finish.