Tipperary have too much firepower for brave Offaly
Lar Corbett and Séamus Callanan grab two goals each for Premier County
Offaly’s Brian Carroll has no room to move as the Tipperary trio of Michael Cahill, Paddy Stapleton and Paudie Maher surround him during the All-Ireland SHC Qualifier at O’Moore Park in Portlaoise. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho
Tipperary 5-25 Offaly 1-20
It wasn’t always straightforward but Tipperary got the job done nonetheless in Portlaoise, running out easy winners in the end. Two goals apiece from Lar Corbett and Séamus Callanan put Offaly to the sword, although Brian Whelehan’s side at least died with their boots on this time around, certainly more so than against Kilkenny last month.
It looked that any hope of a contest was gone up in smoke after just four minutes. Tipp sallied through at will and Corbett and Bonner Maher helped themselves to a goal apiece before most of the Offaly players had even touched the ball. Callanan set up Corbett’s with a strong run through the middle, Maher slipped through onto a loose ball for his.
To Offaly’s great credit though, they didn’t lie down and take their beating. Brian Carroll continued his excellent summer and started building a score for Offaly. He got the next three points, a couple from frees, and got help from Dan Currams and Cathal Parlon. By the 20th minute, they had scored the same amount of times as Tipp – 2-4 to 0-6.
They kept at it and got the margin down to two points on 25 minutes but Tipp only had to stretch their legs a little to move clear. Corbett planted his second goal of the day after running on to a gorgeous flick from Callanan before Callanan himself popped up for his first goal of the day just before half-time. It meant that Tipp went in 4-9 to 0-11 up at the break.
The second half got interesting for a while after Colin Egan tapped home a goal for Offaly soon after the restart. Joe Bergin grew into the game as well and with Carroll dependable as ever on the frees, Offaly hauled themselves back to within four points.
But just as in the first half, a brief tap on the pedal put Tipp into the clear. They rattled off seven points in as many minutes to put the matter beyond doubt.
TIPPERARY: D Gleeson; C Barrett, Pádraic Maher, M Cahill; J Barry, C O’Mahony, B Maher; K Bergin (0-4), J Woodlock (0-1); G Ryan, Patrick Maher (1-1), J O’Dwyer (0-1); N McGrath (0-1), S Callanan (2-10, seven frees), Lar Corbett (2-2).
Subs: D Maher (0-2) for Ryan (7-12 mins, blood) and for Ryan (half-time); T Stapleton (0-1) for Barrett (47 mins); E Kelly (0-1) for O’Dwyer (59 mins); S McGrath for Woodlock (60 mins); J Forde (0-1) for Patrick Maher (66 mins).
OFFALY: J Dempsey; N Wynne, R Hanniffy, C McDonald; E Nolan, K Brady, C Parlon (0-1); S Ryan (0-1), D Currams (0-1); J Bergin (0-3, one free, one ’65), C Mahon, C Egan (1-0); B Carroll (0-13, nine frees), D Kenny, S Dooley (0-1). Subs: S Cleary for Kenny (31 mins); Kevin Connolly for Brady (half-time); Peter Geraghty for Cleary (62 mins); Thomas Geraghty for Connolly (70 mins).
Referee: Alan Kelly (Galway)