Clare blown away in the second half
Cork use the wind to their advantage after the interval to reach Munster hurling final
Clare’s Nicky O’Connell challenges William Egan of Cork. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho
Clare 0-15 Cork 0-23: Jimmy-Barry Murphy’s Cork have beaten Clare by eight points in this afternoon’s Munster semi-final.
The Rebels will face Limerick in the provincial decider on July 14th after producing a stunning second half performance at the Gaelic Grounds, in front of 19,049 spectators.
Cork will return to the Limerick city venue for the provincial decider against the Treaty men in three weeks time, for a first Munster final clash between the counties since 1992.
A brilliant scoring blitz early in the second half paved the way for Cork’s first victory in four competitive outings against Clare in 2013.
Clare had won a Waterford Crystal Cup clash early in the year – before winning the two National League fixtures between the teams, including a relegation play-off.
But the tables were turned in sensational fashion as Cork outscored Clare by 0-15 to 0-4 in the second half.
Clare led by 0-11 to 0-8 at half-time but a scintillating run of nine points without reply laid the foundation for this Cork win.
And the Rebels have now extended an unbeaten championship run against Clare that stretches all the way back to 1998.
Cork, who had ten different scorers, also had a hero in All Star goalkeeper Anthony Nash, who pulled off some vital saves while also popping over two long-range frees.
As early as the eighth minute, Nash did well to keep out Tony Kelly’s fiercely-struck 20m free. And Clare, who registered seven first half wides, had other chances to register an elusive green flag.
Padraic Collins, Clare’s best player and scorer of five points, shot wide when well placed in the 10th minute and if Clare had taken better options on other occasions, they could have troubled Nash.
Playing against a strong wind in the first half, Cork were happy with a three-point deficit at the break.
And they took full advantage after half-time with a power-packed display that Clare had no answer to.
Clare: P Kelly; D O’Donovan, D McInerney, C Dillon; P O’Connor, P Donnellan, N O’Connell, C Galvin (0-2); J Conlon, T Kelly (0-1), C Ryan (0-2, 1f, 1 65); C McGrath (0-2), D Honan (0-2), P Collins (0-5). Subs: A Cunningham for Conlon (20), F Lynch for Ryan (44), S Morey for O’Connell (55), S O’Donnell (0-1) for McGrath (61).
Cork: A Nash (0-2f); C O’Sullivan, S McDonnell, B Murphy; S O’Neill, C Joyce, W Egan (0-1); T Kenny, D Kearney (0-1); S Harnedy (0-3), C McCarthy (0-1), C Lehane (0-2); L O’Farrell (0-2), P Horgan (0-8, 5f), S Moylan. Subs: J Coughlan (0-2) for Moylan (32), P Cronin (0-1) for McCarthy (62).
Referee: B Kelly (Westmeath).