Electric Ireland MHC Semi-Final
Cork’s underage hurlers did well to hold off a late Dublin comeback against the 14 men in red and white to book a slot in the final against Galway.
It will be their first time in the final for ten years, and Denis Ring’s promising team showed moments of absolute class in their attack and did well to see off an extremely solid Dublin side.
The 45th minute dismissal of Robert Downey was a blow, but Cork were able to adequately deal with a late Dublin flurry.
Dublin scored a goal late in either half, from Eoghan O’Neill and Mark Grogan, but Cork were brilliant at consistently slotting over their points despite a nervy end to the game.
Brian Turnbull top-scored for the Rebels with 0-12, bringing his tally to 0-43 in Cork’s run to the final.
The Rebels had five players who the U17 All-Ireland win against Dublin a week previously, including midfielder Daire Connery who was excellent in both games.
And both Turnbull and Connery will have made senior management stand up and notice for their future careers.
The first-half was an error ridden affair, with the teams hitting 13 wides between them. Cork raced into a 0-7 to 0-2 lead inside the opening quarter, as Connery and Turnbull proved dangerous from placed balls and open play.
Cork’s lead stretched to seven before O’Neill struck with a vital goal for Dublin right before half-time. But ultimately Dublin weren’t efficient enough converting opportunities as they posted 2-13 from 32 shots during the hour.
At the opposite end Cork, prompted by the delightful Brian Turnbull, were that bit cuter.
Turnbull finished with a 0- 12 haul, while energetic midfielder Daire Connery struck five for Ring’s charges.
So impressive down south when winning the Munster Championship, Cork provided glimpses of their considerable ability in the opening period. Still when the teams departed at the break Cork only held a 0-11 to 1-4 advantage which scarcely reflected what had happened.
There was nothing wrong with Dublin’s attitude and application, though, and when Eoghan O’Neill poked a goal on the stroke of half-time it gave Fintan Clandillon’s charges an injection of hope.
Cork had commenced brightly accumulating a 0-7 to 0-2 lead by the 17th minute with Brian Roche, Brian Turnbull, and Daire Connery contributing fine scores.
Despite being under pressure Dublin remained defiant with Liam Murphy and the splendid Sean Currie narrowing the gap, but Cork reeled off four points without reply.
Turnbull (2), Ger Millerick, and Brian Buckley found the range, but O’Neill managed to register a goal for Dublin as the deficit was trimmed.
Within a minute of the restart Dublin spurned a glorious opportunity to net a second major as Conor O’Donoghue’s penalty went wide.
Dublin kept swinging, but with Turnbull in excellent form Cork were 0- 17 to 1- 7 a head when Downey was red carded.
Questions continued to be posed by Dublin, but Cork were finding the requisite answers. An injury-time Grogan goal brought Dublin to within three, but fittingly it was Turnbull, who supplied the insurance score at the death.
Scorers for Cork: Brian Turnbull 0-13 (11fs), Daire Connery 0-5 (2fs), Brian Roche 0-2, Ger Millerick, Brian Buckley, Diarmuid Linehan 0-1 each.
Scorers for Dublin: Sean Currie 0-6 (3fs), Liam Murphy 0-4 (2fs), Mark Grogan and Eoghan O’Neill 1-1 each, Emmet Allen 0-1.
CORK: Ger Collins; Conor O’Callaghan, Sean O’Leary Hayes, Eoin Roche; Aaron Walsh Barry, James Keating, Ger Millerick; Daire Connery, Brian Roche; Brian Buckley, Craig Hanafin, Diarmuid Linehan; Liam O’Shea, Robert Downey, Brian Turnbull. Subs: Barry Murphy for Craig Hanafin (47), Declan Hannon for Brian Buckley (49), Colin O’Brien for Brian Roche (60).
DUBLIN: Conor O’Donoghue; Andrew Dunphy, Ben McHugh, Kevin Burke; Enda O’Donnell, Luke Walsh, Lee Gannon; David Keogh, Ben Coffey; Mark Grogan, Diarmaid O’Floinn, Eoghan O’Neill; Liam Murphy, Sean Currie, Luke McDwyer. Subs: Shane Kennedy for Luke McDwyer (HT), Emmet Allen for Ben Coffey (52), Cian Derwin for Diarmaid O’Floinn (52), Tom Aherne for Enda O’Donnell (60).