MF Cork goals provide cushion

MUNSTER MFC/Cork 2-12 Tipperary 2-9: TWO FIRST-HALF goals were crucial for Cork who survived a spirited Tipperary comeback to reach the Munster minor football final at Semple Stadium, Thurles yesterday evening.

The game looked over when Cork went in at the break leading 2-7 to 1-2. In the 14th minute, Mark Sugrue finished a four-man move with a cracking strike. In the 27th minute, slick Cork passing again sliced open the defence and Shane Duggan applied the finishing touch for a 2-7 to 0-2 lead. Tipperary got a lifeline with a Billy Hewitt goal in injury time.

Tipp upped their game after the break and a goal by Liam McGrath after 40 minutes lifted them. Two points followed, and in the 55th minute, Billy Hewitt’s shot from close-range blazed over the bar when a goal would have brought Tipperary level.

Cork held their nerve in the tense closing stages as Tipperary had captain Paddy Dalton sidelined for a second yellow card. Cork had key performances from Mark Sugrue, Kevin Hallissey, Damian Cahalane, John O Rourke and Diarmuid Lester.

CORK: D Hanrahan; D Crowley, M O’Shea, D Lester; T Clancy, J Burns, J Wall; D Cahalane (0-1), J O’Rourke (0-1); K Hallissey (0-3), M Sugrue (1-2), A Cronin (0-1); K Sheehan, S Duggan (1-1), B Hurley (0-2). Subs: D Murphy for Crowley; S Ryan (0-1) for O’Shea; D McEoin for Sugrue.

TIPPERARY: P Nolan; P Dalton, C O’Sullivan, P O’Meara; B Maher, M O’Sullivan, S Taylor; D Leahy (0-1), J O’Callaghan; L McGrath (1-1), B Harkin, S Leahy; L Boland (0-3), L Treacy, B Hewitt (1-4). Subs: N O’Meara for C O’Sullivan; B Walsh for Harkin; S Carroll for Treacy.

Referee: R Hickey (Clare).

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