Tipperary 5-19 Waterford 0-13
Tipperary retained their Munster Munster Senior Hurling Championship title with consummate ease as John McGrath claimed a hat-trick of goals to end this game as a contest early in the second half , writes John Fogarty, GAA Correspondent.
The 21-point margin equalled their winning gap over Waterford in 2011.
McGrath added two of them after the break, one from a penalty, to kill off a Waterford challenge that never truly ignited.
Waterford will now face Wexford in an All-Ireland quarter-final on July 24, while Tipperary will be out again in an All-Ireland semi-final on August 14.
Leading 1-7 to 0-8 at half-time, Tipperary took full advantage of the wind in the second half when Darren Gleeson’s assisted deliveries caused no end of bother to the Waterford full-back line.
Not only did McGrath find the net twice but he also laid on another goal for Michael Breen, whose goal-scoring from midfield has become a major weapon for this Tipperary side.
Seamus Callanan, enjoying more freedom as the game developed, added a fifth goal in the final minute of regulation time.
Waterford were the more aggressive team for the opening nine minutes but their confidence was rocked when McGrath took advantage of Stephen O’Keeffe’s failure to negotiate a tame Niall O’Meara shot.
They recovered with the next three points but none of the came from play and by half-time they had registered just two outside of placed balls.
Their wide count of nine at the interval eclipsed their points tally of seven and they were unable to find their range for 20 minutes.
In that period, Tipperary reeled off five scores, four of them frees as the Déise defence struggled to keep tabs on the movement of the Tipperary forwards.
Too often the Waterford attack were forced either to turn back and look for help.
Other times they ran into cul de sacs or shot from low percentage areas.
Tipp, on the other hand, kept the scoreboard ticking over as they found latitude with clever support play in a packed defence.
Scorers for Tipperary: S. Callanan (1-11, 8 frees, 1 65); J. McGrath (3-2, 1-0 pen); M. Breen (1-1); Pádraic Maher, N. McGrath, Patrick Maher, J. Forde, A. McCormack (0-1 each).
Scorers for Waterford: Pauric Mahony (0-6, 4 frees); P. Curran (0-5, 3 frees); A. Gleeson (0-2, sidelines).
TIPPERARY: D. Gleeson; C. Barrett, J. Barry, M. Cahill; S. Kennedy, R. Maher, Pádraic Maher; B. Maher (c), M. Breen; D. McCormack, Patrick Maher, N. McGrath; J. McGrath, S. Callanan, N. O’Meara.
Subs for Tipperary: J. Forde for N. O’Meara (51); S. Curran for D. McCormack (56); K. Bergin for B. Maher (61); A. McCormack for N. McGrath (66); D. Maher for R. Maher (67).
WATERFORD: S. O’Keeffe; S. Fives, B. Coughlan, N. O’Connor; Philip Mahony, T. de Burca, D. Fives; J. Barron, K. Moran (c); S. Bennett, Pauric Mahony, M. Walsh; M. Shanahan, A. Gleeson.
Subs for Waterford: T. Devine for M. Shanahan (49); J. Dillon for M. Walsh (50); C. Dunford for A. Gleeson (56); C. Gleeson for N. Connors (57); B. O’Halloran for P. Mahony (60).
Referee: B. Gavin (Offaly).