Conor McDonald hits 13 points as Wexford send Cork crashing out

Daniel Kearney’s goal had given Cork hope before late scoring surge from Wexford

Wexford manager Liam Dunne celebrates at the final whistle of the All-Ireland SHC Round 2 qualifier against Cork at Semple Stadium. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Wexford manager Liam Dunne celebrates at the final whistle of the All-Ireland SHC Round 2 qualifier against Cork at Semple Stadium. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

 

Wexford 0-23 Cork 1-17

Conor McDonald hit 13 points as Wexford qualified for round three of the hurling qualifiers after a stunning win over Cork at Semple Stadium.

Liam Dunne’s side were deserving winners, but it looked as if they would fall short when Daniel Kearney crashed home a goal for Cork in the 62nd minute, which gave them a one-point lead.

But the Yellowbellies responded with great style, and Lee Chin pointed within a minute, before two scores from Liam Óg McGovern and another from Chin finished off the job in the closing minutes.

Wexford were good value for their 0-12 to 0-9 lead at half-time, but it was a lead that didn’t look likely after a bright start from Cork.

In fairness to Wexford they got off to a decent start too, but in the first 15 minutes Cork hit six good points from play from six different players as they led by 0-6 to 0-5.

Goalkeeper Mark Fanning gave Wexford the lead in the first minute with a long-range free, but three of the next four points came from Cork, through Patrick Horgan, Alan Cadogan and Bill Cooper.

Two points from McDonald gave Wexford the lead again, before Séamus Harnedy, Luke O’Farrell and Willian Egan all found their range.

But Wexford went on to keep Cork scoreless for the next 21 minutes, a period of time in which they hit seven points of their own to take control as they built a 0-12 to 0-6 lead.

But Cork finished the half with a burst of scores, as Conor Lehane hit two, while Horgan’s free meant there was just three in it at the break.

After the restart Horgan showed his prowess from placed balls and his fire soon cut the gap to two points.

But Wexford responded with two of their own – the first from corner back Eoin Moore from long range – to open out a four-point lead again.

Horgan was on the mark for Cork once more in the 42nd minute, but two scores in a row from McDonald and Chin soon settled Wexford again.

But Cork came with a strong surge and they hit 1-4 in the space of 13 minutes to take an unlikely lead as Wexford began to hit wides at the other end.

A mistake form Paudie Foley allowed Kearney in for the goal, but crucially Chin responded at the other end with a great point within a few seconds. And that score proved crucial as Dunne’s side pulled clear in the end to seal their progression.

WEXFORD: M Fanning (0-1, free); E Moore (0-1, free), M O’Hanlon, J Breen; D O’Keeffe, P Foley, E Martin; J O’Connor (0-1), E Conroy; L Óg McGovern (0-2), L Chin (0-4), P Doran; P Morris (0-1), C McDonald (0-13, 10 frees), D Dunne.

Subs: H Kehoe for Doran (35 mins), A Kenny for Martin (43 mins), S Donohoe for O’Connor (63 mins), C Dunbar for Moore (66 mins), A Nolan for Morris (73 mins).

CORK: A Nash; C O’Sullivan, D Cahalane, S McDonnell; A Walsh C Joyce, M Ellis; B Cooper (0-1), W Egan (0-1); L O’Farrell (0-3), S Harnedy (0-1), J Cronin; A Cadogan (0-1), P Horgan (0-7, six frees), C Lehane (0-3).

Subs: D Kearney (1-0) for Cronin (31 mins), B Lawton for Cooper (55 mins), S Kingston for Harnedy (60 mins), C Murphy for Joyce (63 mins), M Coleman for McDonnell (68 mins).

Referee: Barry Kelly (Westmeath).

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