Cork rally to earn hard-fought draw in Thurles

Updated: April 1, 2012

Despite trailing by four points in Semple Stadium, Thurles, Cork fought back to share the spoils with Tipperary and secure a place in the 2012 Allianz National League Semi-Final.

The sides are expected to meet again in the semi-final on the 22nd April and in light of today’s exciting encounter, it is a match not to be missed after a hard-fought battle finished honours even.

The Leesider’s started the game the stronger of the two with Patrick Horgan opening the scoring.

However, Tipperary were keen to establish their mark on the game and with seven points being registered in the first six minutes, the game was always going to be difficult to decide.

Cork ended the first-half on top; however, their two-point lead proved to be short lived as Tipperary dug deep and took an early second-half lead forcing Cork to chase the game.

Tipperary quickly pointed to reduce the gap to just one point after half-time before a well worked free led to a Pa Bourke goal on 37 minutes to give the Tipperary men a two-point lead.

Burke continued to impress with Noel McGrath also getting on the score-sheet however, Cork kept in touch with Horgan in particular finding his scoring range.

With Tipperary refusing to relinquish their lead, Cork showed their steel and their never-say-die attitude was awarded after a Conor Lenhane goal set the game up for a grand stand finish.

With the seconds ticking away and Cork desperately searching for an equaliser, the outstanding Horgan struck again for his ninth point of the game to earn Cork what has been described as a hard-earned and fair result.

Cork’s late comeback will surely act as morale booster ahead of a second meeting with the Premier County later this month as both sides vie for a place in the 2012 Allianz National League Final.

TIPPERARY: B Cummins; D Maher, P Curran, M Cahill; T Stapleton (0-1), C O’Mahony, P Maher (0-1); B Maher, J Woodlock (0-1); G Ryan (0-2), N McGrath (0-5), P Bourke (1-6, 1-2f); S Bourke (0-3), B O’Meara, J O’Brien (0-3).

Subs: S McGrath for Ryan (h.t.), E Kelly (0-1) for O’Meara (48), T Hammersley for N McGrath (55), J Ryan for Woodlock (59), A Ryan for B Maher (70).

CORK: D Óg Cusack; S O’Neill, S McDonnell, B Murphy; S Óg Ó’hAilpín, E Cadogan, W Egan (0-1f); L McLoughlin, D Sweetnam (0-3); C Lehane (1-2), P Cronin (0-1), C Naughton (0-4); J Coughlan (0-2), P O’Sullivan, P Horgan (0-9, 3f).

Subs: L O’Farrell for Coughlan (58), T Kenny for Sweetnam (63), J Gardiner (0-1) for McLoughlin (69).

Referee: B Kelly (Westmeath).

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