Cork 2-30 Clare 2-21
Mark Coleman made a winning start as Cork's new captain in AN impressive win over Clare at Pairc Ui Chaoimh on Saturday.
The centre-back linked the play brilliantly, especially during Cork’s most productive spell in a wind-assisted second quarter, he also contributed 0-5 from play and placed balls.
Despite a promising start Clare were simply blown by the hosts, although a late rally yielded 1-3 and put a more respectable look on the scoreboard.
The sides were level four times during the first-half before Clare received a major boost with a goal after 21 minutes. Shane Meehan created the opportunity by turning Cork full-back Ger Millerick and setting up Mark Rodgers from close range.
It put the visitors 1-9 to 0-9 in front, but they didn’t score again in the opening half as Cork took over, compiling 1-9 without response to a take a firm grip,
After Shane Barrett was denied by a flying Eibher Quilligan save, Cork managed a goal of their own after 26 minutes, Seamus Harnedy cutting out a pass before sending Kingston clear.
He spotted wing-back Tim O’Mahony sprinting forward and his finish began a Cork scoring surge, availing of the strong wind to race 1-19 to 1-9 ahead at the interval.
Harnedy’s effort during first half injury time was the pick of the bunch, converting from close to the left touchline on half-way.
Clare went 21 minutes without adding to their tally following Rodgers’s goal before David Reidy obliged from a 42nd minute free. But it was still all Cork, despite them facing the elements.
Shane Kingston assumed placed-ball duties in place of Patrick Horgan, who was an unused substitute, and he emerged as top scorer.
The game as a contest was well over by the time Cork substitute Luke Meade slammed in their second goal, before Clare replacement Domhnall McMahon replied at the other end.
CORK: P Collins; N O'Leary, G Millerick, S O'Donoghue; T O'Mahony (1-0), M Coleman, (0-5, three frees), R Downey (0-1); C Joyce (0-3), D Fitzgibbon (0-4); C Lehane (0-1), S Harnedy (0-2), S Twomey (0-1); S Kingston (0-9, five frees, 0-1 '65), A Cadogan (0-1), S Barrett (0-2).
Subs: C Cahalane for Twomey (40 mins), J O’Connor for Lehane (52 mins), P Power (0-1) for Cadogan (56 mins), L Meade (1-0) for Harnedy (60 mins), R O’Flynn for Barrett (65 mins), S O’Leary-Hayes for O’Leary (temporary sub 68 mins).
CLARE: E Quilligan; R Hayes, C Cleary, P Flanagan; D Ryan (0-2) , A Fitzgerald, D McInerney; J Browne, S Meehan (0-1); C Malone (0-5), D Reidy (0-3 frees), R Mounsey; M Rodgers (1-5, three frees), R Taylor (0-2), A Shanagher.
Subs: P Crotty (0-2) for Mounsey (40 mins), D McMahon (1-0) for Shanagher, D Fitzgerald for Reidy and P Donnellan (0-1) for McInerney (all 55 mins).
Referee: J Murphy (Limerick).