Cork 5-24; Waterford 3-9
Waterford fans travelled to Cork for Wednesday evening’s Munster Intermediate Hurling Final anticipating another famous win for the Deise.
It was pointed out that Ian O’Regan and Brian Wall had played senior championship while Pat Fitzgerald and Pa Kearney were as good as any players at this level.
Sure, we said, how good could Cork be? After all, they can ‘only’ pick from Intermediate clubs. How wrong we were.
On the night, Waterford were well beaten by a much slicker, younger, fitter and confident Cork outfit by a sizeable 21-point margin, just two points less than what Waterford themselves had defeated Limerick by in the semi-final in Thurles.
A team crossing the Blackwater hasn’t been on the receiving end of a defeat like this since the 1983 Munster senior final, making the trip home feel very long indeed.
The margin of victory couldn’t have been reckoned upon during an end-to-end first half, with the teams level on no less than five occasions. Yet Cork’s dominance in midfield, greater attacking threat and a strong finish to the half gave them a seven-point advantage at the break.
The second half scoreboard read Cork 3-17 Waterford 2-2, which gives one some idea of the home side’s complete dominance. A bad night at the office also saw Waterford’s captain John O’Leary dismissed for a second bookable offence.
Cork: A Nash; B Coleman, D McSweeney, B Murphy; J Carey, R Cashman, J O’Leary; E Dillon, L Desmond; R Dwyer, Mark O’Sullivan, L McLoughlin; Maurice O’Sullivan, L Farrell, S Moylan.
Scorers: Maurice O’Sullivan (2-3); L Desmond (1-7; 0-5f, 0-1 65); Mark O’Sullivan (1-2); S Moylan (0-5); L Farrell (0-3); L McLoughlin (1-0); R Dwyer (0-1), B Ring (f) and J Jordan (0-1 each).
Substitutes: J Jordan for Cashman (40 mins); E Clancy for B Murphy (50 mins); A Mannix for Dwyer (55 mins) and B Ring for Farrell (55 mins).
Waterford: I O’Regan; B Wall, J O’Leary, K Flynn; J Coffey, S Kearney, W Henley; D Murphy, P Fitzgerald; P Hurney, D Howard, J Kearney; B Hannon, L Lawlor, P Kearney.
Scorers: D Howard (1-1); B Hannon (0-4f); J Kearney, P Hurney (1-0 each); P Fitzgerald (0-2); P Kearney and L Lawlor (0-1 each).
Substitutes: R Power for D Murphy (40 mins); P Molumphy for Henley (52 mins); S Hannon for P Kearney (55 mins and D Hickey for J Kearney (55 mins).
Referee: N Cosgrove (Tipperary)