Masters' class drives Cork

 

Cork 0-18 Dublin 1-6: Cork unveiled James Masters as Colin Corkery's long-term successor at Páirc Uí Rinn on Saturday.

The win for Cork assures them of a place in the top flight of the league next year, and ended any realistic chance the out-of-sorts Dublin had of making it to the semi-finals.

But the real story of the day was to be found in Masters, who displaced Corkery in the Nemo Rangers team last summer and looks certain to become his replacement with the county team. He kicked eight points as the rampant Rebels romped to the easiest of wins before the meagre attendance of 1,800.

The game as a contest was over at the interval, as Cork led by 0-11 to 0-2.

It would have been worse for Dublin, but for a couple of brilliant saves from goalkeeper Stephen Cluxton. Cork should have found the net as early as the fourth minute, when Brendan Jer O'Sullivan's drive from point-blank range was clawed away by Cluxton.

It hardly seemed to matter as Cork, with Masters finding his range and supported by Conor McCarthy, Alan Cronin and O'Sullivan, coasted into a 0-6 to 0-0 lead after 17 minutes.

In fact, it took Dublin 31 minutes before Mark Vaughan kicked their first point from play, and they trailed 0-9 to 0-2 at that stage.

Cork's dominance was absolute, but nowhere was it more marked than at midfield where Nicholas Murphy had a magnificent game, and such was Dublin's discomfort that they were forced to replace Shane Ryan with Darren Homan after just 20 minutes.

Dublin did threaten to make a fight of it at the start of the second half with Jason Sherlock, after taking a pass from Conal Keaney, firing to the net within 20 seconds of the restart.

With the breeze at their backs, points followed from Tomás Quinn and substitute Senan O'Connell and within four minutes Cork's lead had had been whittled down to four points (0-11 to 1-4).

But Cork came home in a canter, with their final-quarter substitute Colin Crowley finding enough time to kick three points before the end.

Compounding Dublin's misery, Homan fell victim to the only yellow card nine minutes from the end.

CORK: K Murphy; K OConnor, N Geary, G Murphy; E Sexton, A Lynch, M Cronin; N Murphy, S Levis; J Masters (0-8, 3 45s, 2 frees), C McCarthy (0-2), A Cronin (0-2); M O Croinin (0-1), BJ O'Sullivan (0-2), K O'Sullivan. Subs: D Duggan for Murphy (30 mins), C Crowley (0-3) for O'Sullivan (50 mins), P Clifford for O Cronin (50 mins), C O'Riordan for McCarthy (69 mins), N O'Leary for A Cronin (69 mins).

DUBLIN: S Cluxton; P Griffin, P Christie, S O'Shaughnessy; P Casey, B Cullen, P Andrews; C Whelan, S Ryan; C Moran, J Sherlock (1-0), D Lally; M Vaughan (0-1), C Keaney, T Quinn (0-3, 2f). Subs: D Homan (0-1) for Ryan, yellow card (20 mins), C Goggins for Andrews (h-t), S O'Connell (0-1) for Vaughan (h-t), D Byrne for Lally (54 mins), D O'Callaghan for Moran (61 mins).

YELLOW CARD: D Homan (61 mins).

Referee: S Doyle (Wexford).