HL1A: Tipp toppers see off Rebels

March 11, 2018

Billy McCarthy of Tipperary gets in front of Cork's Tim O'Mahony

Tipperary advanced to the league quarter-finals with an encouraging 1-24 to 1-21 victory over Cork in Thurles.

The win sees the Premier County finish top of Division One on score difference, which secures them a quarter-final date with Dublin at Parnell Park next weekend.

As for the Rebels, they will face Waterford in the relegation decider to see who is demoted to Division 1B.

At the end of an exciting opening period, Tipperary led by three points, 0-15 to 1-9.

Jason Forde's exceptional ninth-minute brace of points had Tipp level, 0-5 to 1-2, and Billy McCarthy's score edged the Premier ahead with ten minutes on the clock. Sean Curran collected a pass from John McGrath to double the difference as the hosts slotted four quickfire scores without reply.

Patrick Horgan's seventh-minute penalty had fired the Rebels into a 1-2 to 0-3 lead and it was the same player who clipped over a twelfth-minute free to get the visitors motoring again after Tipp rallied with those four successive points. Shane Kingston tied the scores up again on 14 minutes only for Michael Breen to slap over his second point of the afternoon - a lovely wind-assisted effort from distance.

Conor Lehane hit back instantly, 1-5 to 0-8, with 15 pulsating minutes played, and Alan Cadogan's point had the Rebels one ahead as we passed the midway stage in the first half.

A Forde free drew Tipp level and Patrick Maher nudged them back in front, but Horgan found space to slot another equalising score in the 24th minute. Forde restored the hosts' advantage nine minutes from the short whistle but a Horgan free meant it was all-square again five minutes later.

Cathal Barrett's sumptuous strike began a run of three without reply for Tipp, Patrick Maher making it 0-14 to 1-8 before Horgan's free on the stroke of half time was cancelled out by corner back Alan Flynn as the hosts led by three at the interval. But Cork would have wind advantage when the action resumed…

Four points separated them as Forde clipped over a brace of frees either side of one from Horgan upon the resumption; Horgan then hammered over a stunning long-distance free from his own '45' and a Forde brace teased Tipp's lead out to five before Lehane replied from play, 0-19 to 1-12 after 47 minutes.

The busy Bonner Maher notched his third but Horgan's next free left four between the sides going into the final 20 minutes. Cadogan closed the gap to three, when he turned down a shot at goal in favour of his point at the three-quarters stage. Brendan Maher replied within seconds and Billy McCarthy finished the game as a contest when he ran straight through the heart of the Cork defence to busy the ball in the net. Again, the response was a Horgan score - 1-21 to 1-15 with 15 minutes to go.

Michael Cahalane pointed as the Rebels refused to roll over but Forde struck another free to squeeze the winners six clear again on 59 minutes. Luke Meade and Barrett exchanged scores before the former and Cadogan pulled back a couple more for the Leesiders, Nash diverted a late Sean Curran effort onto his crossbar in a frantic finale and Horgan's 66th-minute point drew the Rebels back within four.

Daniel Kearney made it a three-point game with two minute of regulation time remaining but Tipp, despite 20 wides, held on for a fine win.

Tipperary - B Hogan; A Flynn (0-1), S O'Brien, D Maher; B Heffernan, Padraic Maher, R Maher; B Maher (0-1), C Barrett (0-2); S Curran (0-2), B McCarthy (1-1), Patrick Maher (0-3); M Breen (0-2), J Forde (0-12, 7f), J McGrath. Subs: M Russell for J McGrath, M Cahill for D Maher, C Darcy for B McCarthy.

Cork - A Nash; S O'Donoghue, E Cadogan, C Spillane; C Joyce, T O'Mahony, M Coleman; D Fitzgibbon, B Cooper; S Kingston (0-1), C Lehane (0-2), R O'Flynn; A Cadogan (0-3), M Cahalane (0-2), P Horgan (1-10, 1-0pen, 0-8f). Subs: L Meade (0-2) for S Kingston, B Lawton for R O'Flynn, D Kearney (0-1) for B Cooper, J O'Connor for D Fitzgibbon, L McLoughlin for T O'Mahony.

Referee - P O'Dwyer.

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