Cork man up to take final step
For the third championship match involving Cork this year, a sending off becomes the seminal moment
Daly changed up, forcing men onto Cork but William Egan took on the mantle of cleaning up.
“Certainly the sending off was a break that we needed today,” said Barry-Murphy.
There was another moment that will always be the accompanying image for this fantastic contest. Dublin’s usually diligent goalkeeper, Gary Maguire, was humiliated by a brilliant piece of ingenuity from Cork’s chief hunter-gather.
Patrick Horgan, aka “the pick pocket”’ produced a moment of subtlety that Maguire will have to relive in his nightmares. It so rarely happens.
Pa Cronin dropped a ball in and as Maguire was seeking to ride the first belt and clear down field, as he has done over a thousand times before, the sliotar was stripped from his control, and in a split second nestled in the net.
Horgan, the man Cork struggled so desperately without in the Munster final defeat to Limerick, delivered their first goal of this year’s championship to make it a four point game.
Seven minutes remained. Dublin were in Kilkenny territory; trying to reel in Rebel hurlers, bursting with confidence, and an extra man.
Daly reacted, hauling off David Treacy then Dotsy O’Callaghan but an old failing crept back into their game. Paul Ryan posted two wides from scoreable frees.
Then, as he prepped for a free just over 20 metres out and to the left, Dublin selector Ciarán Hetherton arrived with a bottle of water. Shoot for goal was the brief instruction. The water bottle remaining full to its brim.
Nash saved. Cork cleared.
A moment later possession went to an unmarked Danny Sutcliffe near half way, wide on the left. Dublin’s outstanding player this summer, a man who landed four magnificent points yesterday, bungled the ball out of play.
And Dublin, with the winter blanket of being Leinster champions, but who finally seemed poised to rise from the embers of Kilkenny’s demise were gone.
Of course, Cork have broken free from the yoke of Kilkenny dominance to build their own dynasty many, many times before.
Every decade or so. Their last great team shined from 1999 until 2006. Maybe it’s that time again.
“At the start of this year I wasn’t thinking about an All-Ireland,” Barry-Murphy added. “I was thinking about surviving in the national league because after a long number of years without success we were trying to build up a team.
“I don’t think we are in bonus territory but we are delighted to be there and are certainly going to give it our best shot to win it. We are there now, why not?”
Average age 24. It feels like the start of something.