Inter-Provincial Hurling: Munster register convincing victory
Inter-Provincial Hurling Semi-Final
Munster 3-21 Ulster 0-15
By Jackie Cahill at Semple Stadium
Tipperary stars Seamus Callanan and Mikey Breen combined for 2-8 as Munster cruised past Ulster and into a GAA Inter-Provincial Hurling Final clash with Leinster.
Callanan played a captain’s part, registering 1-7 as Munster had little difficulty in scoring a 15-point victory.
Breen’s first half goal helped to separate the sides at the break before Munster, managed by former Clare star Anthony Daly, pulled away in the second period.
Callanan, All-Ireland final man-of-the-match against Kilkenny in September, netted in the 40th minute following a defensive error before Waterford’s Bennett brothers combined for a goal in stoppage time, Shane providing the assist for Stephen to finish.
Munster led by 1-10 to 0-7 at half-time, two Barry Nash points after his introduction opening up a six-point interval margin approaching the break.
For much of the first half, it was Breen’s third-minute goal that effectively separated the teams as Ulster battled gamely.
They had a fine first half performance from Armagh’s Conor Corvan, a late call-up to the starting line-up who registered three points from play before the break.
But Munster, overall, had the more classy operators and had little difficulty in keeping their opponents at arm’s length.
Callanan, operating at full-forward and captaining the Munster team, had four pointed frees in the first half, with Tipperary team-mate Breen adding a point to his early goal.
Aside from Corvan, Antrim’s Ciarán Clarke was another to show up well for Ulster in the first half, scoring three of his four points from placed balls.
Munster had little difficulty after the break– outscoring Ulster by 2-11 to 0-8 to book their place in the decider.
Scorers for Munster: S Callanan 1-7 (6fs), M Breen 1-1, B Nash 0-4, Stephen Bennett 1-0, J O’Dwyer 0-2, D Byrnes, T Murnane, S Dowling, P Maher, D Reidy, Shane Bennett and D McCormack 0-1 each.
Scorers for Ulster: C Clarke 0-7 (6fs), C Corvan 0-3, C O’Prey 0-2 (1f), D Cullen, N McKenna and C Woods 0-1 each.
Munster: A Nash (Cork); B Coughlan (Waterford), J Barry (Tipperary), N Connors (Waterford); D Byrnes (Limerick), C Dillon (Clare), S Fives (Waterford); M Breen (Tipperary), J Barron (Waterford); S Dowling (Limerick), Shane Bennett (Waterford), D McCormack (Tipperary); J O’Dwyer (Tipperary), S Callanan (Tipperary), D Reidy (Clare).
Subs: A Shanagher (Clare) for Dowling (25), B Nash (Limerick) for Shane Bennett (25), Tom Murnane (Kerry) for Barron (h.t.), P Maher (Tipperary) for Fives (h.t.), Stephen Bennett (Waterford) for McCormack (h.t.), Dowling for O’Dwyer (45), Shane Bennett for Reidy (45), McCormack for Breen (51), Fives for Coughlan (55), Barron for Dillon (55).
Ulster: S Keith (Down); S McCrory (Antrim), P Burke (Antrim), J McManus (Down); N McAuley (Antrim), C Woods (Down), C Taggart (Down); E Campbell (Antrim), Ciarán Johnston (Antrim); C Corvan (Armagh), N McKenna (Antrim), D Toner (Down); Conor Johnston (Antrim), J Dillon (Antrim), C Clarke (Antrim).
Subs: C O’Prey (Down) for Ciarán Johnston (26), D Cullen (Donegal) for Toner (33), J Corvan (Armagh) for Taggart (46), A Grant (Derry) for C Corvan (47), P Henry (Derry) for Conor Johnston (49), C O’Connell (Antrim) for Keith (52), C Devlin (Armagh) for Dillon (52), S Renaghan (Armagh) for Cullen (55), Ciarán Johnston for J McManus (56).
Referee: S Cleere (Kilkenny).