Cork prove too strong for Offaly

November 8, 2018

Cork pulled through to a five-point victory in the end over Offaly, but it took them all their time to overcome the dogged visitors in Páirc Uí Chaoimh, winning by 1-20 to 1-15.

The Rebel men led by just a point at the break, 1-12 to 1-11, with Offaly having shown particularly strong resistance in the first half. However, Cork’s physical power proved too much in the second half and they ultimately were able to restrict the Faithful side to four points in that period.

Cork got off to the perfect start, putting the ball in the net within 50 seconds as Tom Kenny fired home with an angled shot from the wing.

However, Offaly responded well with two points from Shane Dooley and a neat solo effort from Shane Kelly to get level.

However, Cork always seemed to be able to move up a gear when needed and a Pat Horgan brace either side of an effort from the impressive Pa Cronin restored Cork’s lead and left Offaly constantly battling to keep up.

But keep up they did as Colin Egan fired to the net to draw his side level at 1-4 apiece. Both sides traded scores for the next few minutes to keep the teams level before Cathal Naughton put Cork in front with a fine clipped effort.

Cork finished the half strongly but the superb work of Offaly’s Brian Carroll kept his side well in contention and there was just a point between the teams at the break as Cork led 1-12 to 1-11.

Horgan had a great goal chance for Cork at the start of the second half but his effort was deflected over the bar to put two between the sides again.

Offaly had one fine chance for a goal early in the second half but Anthony Nash’s save from Dooley proved crucial and at the time, gave Cork the fillip they needed to go on and win the game.

Still, Cork never were able to fully shake off Offaly but the Leinster side found things much tougher in the second period, only scoring four points as Cork slowly but surely squeezed them out of the game.

A point from Cronin left a goal between the teams with a quarter of an hour or so to go and further points from Ben O’Connor and Brian Murphy put Cork too far clear for Offaly to catch them.

Scorers — Cork: B O’Connor (2f, 1 s-l), P O’Sullivan, P Horgan (2f) 0-4 each, P Cronin 0-3, T Kenny 1-0, C Naughton 0-2, J O’Connor, B Murphy, N McCarthy 0-1 each. Offaly: S Dooley 0-6 (5f), B Carroll 0-4, C Egan 1-0, J Bergin 0-2, S Kelly, S Wynne, C Parlon 0-1 each.

CORK — A Nash; S McDonnell, E Cadogan, S Murphy; J Gardiner, M Ellis, W Egan; J O’Connor, B Murphy; T Kenny, P Cronin, C Naughton; B O’Connor, P O’Sullivan, P Horgan. Subs: N McCarthy for Naughton (53), K Murphy for Horgan (53), L McLoughlin for Egan (58), C McCarthy for Cronin (63).

OFFALY — J Dempsey; B Mulrooney, J Rigney, S Egan; D Hayden, R Hanniffy, D Morkam; C Mahon, S Kelly; B Carroll, C Egan, S Wynne; C Parlon, J Bergin, S Dooley. Subs: D Hayden for Rigney (41), K Connolly for Kelly (49), K Brady for Wynne (63).

Ref — M Wadding (Waterford).