Cork got their bid for an immediate return to Division 2 off to a winning start against Offaly in Pairc Ui Chaoimh this evening.
Ronan McCarthy’s side lowered the colours of John Maughan’s Faithful County on a scoreline of 0-20 to 0-13
2,356 spectators showed up for this first round fixture and the majority of those wouldn’t have been impressed with the home side’s first-half performance.
They trailed by 0-8 to 0-9 at the change of ends but whatever McCarthy said to his troops during the half-time break had the desired effect as they subsequently outscored their Leinster opponents by 0-12 to 0-4 after the break.
McCarthy sprung Michael Hurley from the bench and he found the target with five points while John O’Rourke (2), Tadhg Corkery and Colm O’Callaghan also made the scoresheet following their introductions.
Leitrim's Aidan Flynn closes in on Ryan Bell of Derry. ©INPHO/Oisin Keniry.
Meanwhile, a late Ciaran McFaul point rescued a share the spoils for hosts Derry against Leitrim in what was a repeat of last year’s Division 4 decider.
The Celtic Park scoreboard read Derry 2-11, Leitrim 1-14 when the final whistle was sounded.
Cillian McGloin’s 14th minute goal gave Terry Hyland’s charges the early initiative but that was cancelled out by an Emmet Bradly strike in the 32nd minute and further scores from Eoghan Duffy and captain Chrissy McKaigue saw the Oak Leafers take a slender 1-8 to 1-7 lead into the break.
The Connacht county enjoyed the better of the early second-half exchanges and hit four unanswered points to move three points clear but Shane McGuigan got Rory Gallagher’s men back on level terms when netting their second goal in the 44th minute.
Leitrim fought back once again but both teams had to be content with a point apiece.
Cork - M Martin; S Powter, S Ryan, P Ring; K Crowley (0-1), L O’Donovan, M Taylor; I Maguire, T Clancy; R Deane (0-1), S White (0-2), B Hartnett (0-1); D Gore, C Sheehan (0-3, 1f), C O’Mahony (0-3, 2f). Subs: M Hurley (0-5, 1f) for D Gore, J O’Rourke (0-2) for T Clancy, C O’Callaghan (0-1) for C O’Mahony, T Corkery (0-1) for L O’Donovan, P Murphy for C Sheehan.
Offaly - P Dunican; D Hogan, E Rigney, N Darby; E Carroll, D Dempsey, J Hayes; C Mangan, M Brazil; S Horan, R McNamee (0-4, 2f), C McNamee; C Johnson (0-1), B Allen (0-4, 1f), A Sullivan (0-4). Subs: R McEvoy for C McNamee, C Donohue for R McEvoy, M Abbott for C Johnson, J Dempsey for M Brazil, C Donnelly for S Horan.
Referee - D O’Mahoney.
Derry - O Lynch; C McCluskey, P McGrogan, L McGoldrick; B Rogers, C McKaigue (0-1), C Doherty; G O'Neill, E Bradley (1-3, 0-2f); E Duffy (0-1), D Tallon, C McFaul (0-2); B McCarron (0-1), R Bell (0-2, 1f), C Bradley. Subs: S McGuigan (1-1, 0-1f) for C Bradley, N Toner for G O'Neill, N Keenan for L McGoldrick, A Doherty for E Duffy, C McWilliams for C Doherty.
Leitrim - D McKiernan; C Reynolds, F McTague, P Maguire; A Flynn, J Gilheany, C McGloin (1-0); D Wrynn, S Moran (0-3); S Quinn, D McGovern, D Flynn (0-1); O McCaffrey, D Rooney (0-1), K Beirne (0-9, 7f). Subs: O McLaughlin for O McCaffrey, R O'Rourke for C McGloin, D Bruen for D McGovern.
Referee - N Mooney.Tweet