McCrabbe steers Dublin to nine-point win over Tipp

Dublin 1-21 Tipperary 1-12

Alan McCrabbe hit ten points as Dublin claimed the scalp of last year's All-Ireland runners-up Tipperary at Parnell Park.

McCrabbe shook off a leg injury to play his part in the Dubs' first NHL Division 1 win, ably assisted by the likes of Peter Kelly, Niall Corcoran, Shane Durkin and Oisin Gough.

Tipperary captain Eoin Kelly cracked home a first minute penalty but the visitors were 1-12 to 1-7 behind at half-time.

Tipp goalkeeper Darren Gleeson let a long delivery from John McCaffrey slip into his net and a late penalty miss from Kelly summed up his side's day.

The Premier county were sluggish and evidently rusty, following the double postponement of their league opener against Kilkenny in Thurles.

But that should not take away from what was a very accomplished performance from Dublin who bounced straight back from last weekend's hammering at the hands of Waterford.

Manager Anthony Daly demanded much more from the Metropolitans and he got it in spades - despite a shaky start.

Lar Corbett won a penalty in the opening seconds for Tipperary, after being gouled by Tomas Brady. Kelly's powerful shot rippled the net, past goalkeeper Gary Maguire, Brady and John McCaffrey on the line.

Tipp included eight players from last year's All-Ireland final team, and four current All-Stars in Corbett, Noel McGrath, Padraic Maher and Conor O'Mahony.

The Dubs were forced into a late change as centre-back Ronan Fallon made way for Joey Boland, but forward duo McCrabbe and David 'Dotsy' O'Callaghan were fit to start.

Dublin's reaction to the concession of that goal was brilliant, with O'Callaghan, McCrabbe, Liam Rushe, Maurice O'Brien and Simon Lambert helping themselves to points.

The hosts hit six on the bounce to lead by 0-6 to 1-0 by the twelfth minute, with young centre-forward Rushe's over-the-shoulder effort the highlight.

Rushe typified Dublin's sharpness and hunger to get on the ball, find space and create scores. With McCrabbe accurate from frees, they built a five-point lead for half-time.

Kelly, Seamus Hennessy and McGrath had picked off points as Tipp fought back to lead by 1-6 to 0-8, seven minutes before the break.

However, the next score fell to Dublin and it was a goal, McCaffrey's high ball dropping in on top of Tipp net minder Gleeson who, under a considerable amount of pressure from O'Callaghan, fumbled the sliotar over the line.

Some excellent scores from McCrabbe and Durkin added to the Dubs' buffer and the evasive David Treacy opened the scoring in the second half.

Eoin Kelly and McCrabbe swapped a succession of frees, but Peter Kelly, McCaffrey, Durkin and Kevin Flynn helped Daly's men stretch into a comfortable lead.

Tipp skipper Kelly, who scored 1-05 in all, had an injury-time chance of a goal but his stinging effort was knocked onto the bar and cleared as Dublin collected two valuable league points.

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