Monday, June 25, 2012

Cork Pull Off Shock Win Over Wolfe Tones

Donal Og Hodnett was on form for Cork on Sunday.

Cork 1-15 Wolfe Tones 0-16

Cork shocked the Wolfe Tones, and the Boston GAA world, with probably the biggest win for the club since the glory days of legendary players, Lar Barden, Richie Fleming, and Frank Delaney.  The rebels streaked out into a 10 point first half lead, but the Tones clawed it back and almost pulled off an unbelievable comeback in a nailbiting finish.  With the staunch Cork supporters in the crowd pleading for the referee to end the agony, Louthman James Califf* provided Cork with an insurance point as he carried his team through a stomach churning second half.

Cork played some good football in the first half while the Wolfe Tones more or less slept through the first 30 minutes.  Early in the half the Tones must have been wondering if the GAA Gods were conspiring against them after Gary Connaughton, Westmeath’s keeper who came to Boston and enlisted with the Tones, twisted his ankle in making a fine save from Pat Leddy.  Following on the injury to Tipperary man Brian Jones early in his first outing early this season it was a tough blow for the Southie lads.  Ray McKeown retook his place in nets for the Tones, and Cork piled on the pressure in front of a somewhatbemused crowd, who were expecting a comfortable win for the Tones.  Perhaps the Tones were too as they seemed caught in a vice of slumber.  Cork played the ball well out of defence, and found Pat Leddy time and again.  Leddy was the cog in Corks efforts and accounted for 1-4 of Cork’s first half total.  Colm Caffrey pointed from wing back, and other scores came from James Califf, Donal Og Hodnett, and John Wycherley.  Cork had size on their side and as they outmuscled the Tones, and as the half wore on the unlikely became a possibility.  The Tones seemed to try and lift themselves in spurts, Barry Grogan accounted for three points and Marty Farrell one, but nothing sustained came from the blue shirts.  At the half it was 1-11 to 0-4 in Cork’s favour.

James Califf coming through for Cork.

The Tones wasted no time in launching their comeback.  After the first fifteen minutes the Tones had clocked up an additional five points and clawed back the deficit to five points.  Cork’s effort had dropped to such an extent that it now looked a likelihood that the Tones would emerge victorious and Cork were undergoing a second half collapse.  It was 18 minutes before Cork scored their first point of the second period through Califf.  The Tones were winning the kickouts, and introduced Laois man, James Doyle.  Doyle looked his usual sprightly self and caused some problems for the Cork backline.  Mike Newmann, Marty Farrell, Doyle, Grogan, and Collie Carr all partook in the scoring feast, but then Cork got themselves back into it.  Califf pointed twice from midfield before Mick Lynch was called upon to make a fine save from Barry Grogan – a goal at that stage would surely have led to Cork confidence waning severely.  Burke again pointed, and it seemed as though Cork had affairs in hand, but the Tones began to attack in waves again as Cork easily turned over the ball time and again.  With forwards of the caliber of the Tones, such mistakes will be penalized and they were.  Grogan,Joyce-Power, Gary Brilly, and Marty Farrell brought the Tones within a point as injury time dragged on.  It was justified however as there were at least three lengthy injuries in the second period.  Califf scored Cork’s fourth point of the second half and with one more chance to try a score the Tones put the ball over the sideline, and the final whistle sounded to the joy of the Cork faithful.  An upset to be sure, and not exactly what the Tones wanted going into next week’s game against Donegal.

Cork:  M. Lynch, O. Boyle, K. Moynagh, C. Caffrey, C. Moynagh, R. Hodnett, M. Burke, J. Califf, T. Clancy, P. Leddy, J. Wycherley, D. Og Hodnett, M. Moynihan.  Tones:  G. Connaughton, P. McGuirk, D. Dalton, G. Brilly, B. Kennihan, K. Regan, J. Farrell, C. lynch, C. Carr, M. Newman, M. Farrell, B. Grogan, C. Joyce-Power.

*Report updated from initial posting.

By Rory O'Donnell

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