GAA: Tipperary record 10-point victory over Cork in All-Ireland semi-final
Last Updated: 17/08/14 6:07pm
Seamus Callanan celebrates after scoring his second goal against Cork
Seamus Callanan inspired Tipperary to a comprehensive 2-18 to 1-11 win over Cork in the All-Ireland semi-final at Croke Park.
Callanan took a significant step towards being crowned Hurler of the Year with 2-4 as the Premier County overpowered their opponents with a storming second-half performance.
There was just two between the old Munster rivals at half-time but Tipp outscored the provincial champions by 1-11 to 1-3 after the break.
Callanan was at the hub of the scoring blast, adding a 47th minute goal to his sixth minute strike to help secure a September 7 final clash with Kilkenny.
Tipperary always looked good value for victory and aside from Callanan, John O’Dwyer shot six points while midfielders Shane McGrath and James Woodlock supplied 0-3 apiece.
Tipp actually hinted at a rout early on as they continued their fine form since being knocked out of the Munster Championship. By the 11th minute they’d scored 1-3 to Cork’s single point and were putting the Rebels’ rearguard under serious pressure.
Callanan came into the contest as Tipp’s primary attacking outlet, and he put his side on the front foot with a brilliant first goal after an error in the Cork defence.
Shane O’Neill failed to collect a ball across the Cork 13-metre line and Callanan pounced, finding space before releasing a bullet to the top right corner.
John O’Dwyer drilled over back-to-back points and suddenly Tipp led 1-3 to 0-1. Cork’s spirit was further dashed by a worrying number of wides, seven in the first 20 minutes, 10 for the half and 16 in total.
However, the Munster champions rallied bravely with points from Aidan Walsh, Seamus Harnedy and an Anthony Nash free to trail 1-4 to 0-4.
The game lost some of its early pace in the second quarter though Tipp were never in great danger and deservedly led 1-7 to 0-8 at half-time.
Cork, out of action for five weeks since the Munster final defeat of Limerick, scored just five points from open play in the first period.
Tipp moved up a gear after the restart and put significant daylight between the sides. Midfielders McGrath and Woodlock and Callanan all pointed.
But, just like early in the game, it was a Callanan goal that would bring a simmering contest back to the boil.
The Drom and Inch man was fed by Patrick ‘Bonner’ Maher around 20 metres out at the Canal End and unleashed another unstoppable drive to the corner.
Ominously for Cork, Tipp now led by 2-10 to 0-9 and didn’t take their foot off the gas this time.
Noel McGrath opened his scoring account with a point before O’Dwyer split the posts again, stretching Tipp’s lead to nine points with 20 minutes remaining.
Cork were forced to go for goals but Harnedy and subs Paudie O’Sullivan and Jamie Couglan were both denied.
They did eventually break through with four minutes to go when Coughlan fed another sub, Rob O’Shea, who netted from close range.
The 2013 All-Ireland finalists generally lacked the same incisive edge up front that Tipp possessed.
The Premier had scoring threats in all sectors and introduced the prolific Eoin Kelly from the bench. He shot a couple of wides but Tipp had victory well secured and closed out with points from Callanan and Noel McGrath.
Tipperary: S Callanan 2-4 (1f), J O’Dwyer 0-6, S McGrath, J Woodlock 0-3 each, N McGrath 0-2.
Cork: C Lehane 0-4, R O’Shea 1-0, A Nash (2f), P Horgan (2f) 0-2 each, A Walsh, S Harnedy, A Cadogan 0-1 each.