Ronan O’Neill’s late point earns Tyrone a draw in Cork

Six teams battle for semi-final spots as Kildare and Westmeath go down

Cork’s John Hayes comes under pressure from Tyrone’s  Matthew Donnelly during the Allianz Football League Division 1 match at Páirc Uí Rinn. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Cork’s John Hayes comes under pressure from Tyrone’s Matthew Donnelly during the Allianz Football League Division 1 match at Páirc Uí Rinn. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

 

Allianz Football League round-up: You write Tyrone off at your peril. Seemingly dead and buried with the clock ticking down to full-time, Mickey Harte’s team fought back with typical resistance and a late pointed free from Ronan O’Neill gave them a draw in the Allianz League Division One encounter with Cork at Páirc Uí Rinn.

On a day when the trapdoor opened up for Kildare and Westmeath, who were both relegated after their dismal league campaigns continued, the mathematical equations at the top of the table now mean that six teams head into next weekend’s concluding series of games with the potential to make the semi-finals.

Derry and Cork are best placed but Tyrone, Mayo, Dublin and Kerry all have chances to make the play-offs.

The Cork-Tyrone match seemed destined for a home win when Colm O’Neill – a half-time substitute – fired home Cork’s second goal to put them 2-10 to 0-13 lead with less than 10 minutes remaining. Paul Kerrigan had scored an early goal to give Cork a great start only for Tyrone, with Kyle Coney in impervious form and Darren McCurry also to the fore, to claim a four-point lead at the interval.

Colm O’Neill’s introduction had an immediate impact and, with Fintan Goold very impressive around centrefield, Cork slowly but surely took a grip on the game. Tyrone’s response to O’Neill’s goal, however, was to dig in and show their resilience with Martin Penrose, Seán Cavanagh and Coney closing the gap to just a single point before Ronan O’Neill showed his fortitude to kick the equalising point and leave it all to play for when they play host to Dublin next weekend.

Derry moved to the top of the table with a 2-17 to 3-9 win over the Lilytwhites at Celtic Park that was far more comfortable than the five points winning margin would indicate. Kildare, who drop down to Division Tow, had two late goals from Eamonn Callaghan and Tommy Moolick.

Cailean O’Boyle was instrumental in orchestrating Derry’s win, scoring a first-half goal that gave them an initiative they were never to relinquish. Keith Cribbin got a goal back for Kildare before the break but Enda Lynn set up Mark Lynch for Derry’s second goal just four minutes after the break and they were effectively out of sight when Kildare got those two late consolation goals.

Westmeath were sent straight back down to Division Two after losing out to Kerry in Mullingar. The Kingdom continued their fine league recovery with Kieran O’Leary and Paul Geaney grabbing the goals for Kerry in a 2-15 to 0-13 success that gave them a third successive win.

Division One
Cork 2-14 Tyrone 0-20
Derry 2-17 Kildare 3-9 (Kildare are relegated)
Westmeath 0-13 Kerry 2-15 (Westmeath are relegated)

Division Two
Donegal 1-19 Louth 3-7 (Louth are relegated)
Galway 2-14 Armagh 1-13
Monaghan 0-19 Laois 0-14

Division Three
Fermanagh 2-20 Wexford 3-8
Offaly 1-12 Limerick 1-13 (Offaly are relegated)
Sligo 0-15 Longford 2-8

Division Four
Antr im 3-15 London 1-10
Clare 3-21 Carlow 2-10
Leitrim 0-16 Tipperary 5-16
Wicklow 2-14 Waterford 0-12

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