McGrath Cup: Gulf in class clear as Cork thrash Limerick
Limerick manage just two points from play as ruthless Rebels pull away in second-half
Sean McSweeney takes a late free during Limerick’s heavy McGrath Cup defeat to Cork. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho
Limerick 0-07 Cork 3-15
Neither manager will have learned much from this awfully one-sided McGrath Cup semi-final at Rathkeale as the Cork romped to a 17-point win.
Once again the gulf in standard between Cork, Kerry and the rest of Munster was all too obvious.
Cork scored 3-14 from play (the only free being scored by Brian Hurley) whereas Limerick managed only two points from play over the 70 minutes.
In fairness to Limerick they were competitive in the first half, at the end of which they trailed by 0-6 to 1-6. The Cork goal was scored after ten minutes by Brian Hurley who seconds later scored his free.
Limerick clearly needed a good start to the second half but instead they were rocked by two Cork goals from Paul Walsh and Ian Maguire in a three-minute spell which effectively ended the game as a contest.
Picking off points from all angles and distances Cork were not pushed in a second half Limerick will want to forget, as they managed only a single point - a Sean McSweeney free a few minutes from the end.
McSweeney kicked a total of five points from frees, with Limerick’s only scores from play coming from Willie Griffin and Kieran Daly.
Newcomer Paul Walsh and captain Ian Maguire were in top form for Cork and between them they scored 2-3, while Brian Hurley top scored with 1-3.
Limerick: D O’Sullivan; M Donovan, S O’Dea, P Maher; B Fanning, T McCarthy, G Brown; D Treacy, T Griffin (0-1); J Liston, S McSweeney (0-5, five frees), M Fitzgibbon; P Nash, A Kearns, K Daly (0-1). Subs: D Lyons for Daly (41 mins), C McSweeney for Fanning (44), S Keeley for Fitzgibbon (50), J Lee for Liston (61), L Murphy for Maher (62).
Cork: M White; K O’Donovan, J Loughney (0-1), C Dennehy; K Crowley (0-1), K Flahive, P Walsh (1-1); I Maguire (1-2), C O’Hanlon; T Clancy, S White, R Deane (0-2); D Gore (0-2), M Taylor, B Hurley (1-3, one free). Subs: T Corkery (0-1) for Crowley (26 mins), E McSweeney (0-1) for White (HT), A Browne for Loughney (44), J Fitzpatrick (0-1) for O’Hanlon (52), P Murphy for Flahive (55).
Referee: D O’Mahoney, Tipperary.