Ireland recapture Cormac McAnallen Cup

Ireland recapture Cormac McAnallen Cup

International Rules second test: AUSTRALIA 53 (3.8.11) IRELAND 57 (4.8.9), MCG, Melbourne

Ireland's Gaelic football stars fired four goals to the Australian net as they recaptured the Cormac McAnallen Cup in thrilling fashion with a 57-53 second Test victory at the MCG.

Following on from their one-point win in Perth, Sean Boylan's men took the series on a aggregate score of 102-97 in wintry conditions in front of 42,823 spectators.

Benny Coulter (2), Kieran Donaghy and Enda McGinley slammed home Ireland's goals, although a late six-pointer from Drew Petrie jangled Irish nerves.

It was a stellar night for Ireland captain Sean Cavanagh who kicked four overs and managed 20 possessions, while Cork's Graham Canty, who amassed 28 disposals on the night, was deservedly named Ireland's player of the series.

A fast start had Australia leading by nine points during the first quarter but Cavanagh got Ireland back within range and the tourists ran riot in the second quarter, picking up goals through Donaghy and McGinley.

Armed with a 36-21 half-time lead, Ireland looked strong but Australia responded in determined fashion with Marc Murphy punching home their first goal of the series.

Ireland's advantage was back to 17 points when Coulter netted and Donaghy collected a late over. The fourth quarter produced some lively attacks, with Shaun Burgoyne, Petrie and Coulter all grabbing goals, and the latter's injury-time effort was enough to see the Irish over the finishing line.

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