Cork 0-17 Limerick 0-9
THE individual brilliance of full-forward Daniel Goulding fired Cork to victory over Limerick in the first round of the Munster U21 Football Championship at Páirc Uí Rinn last night.
The Eire Óg clubman kicked ten points, seven from frees, as the reigning champions overcame a difficult opening hurdle.
Right corner forward Colm O’Neill from Ballyclough was also very much to the fore, scoring three electrifying points in the first half and with the mercurial Goulding formed a brilliant twin strike force.
Limerick looked the more impressive side in the opening sequences but their exciting approach play was not matched with clinical finishing.
With a shell-shocked Cork side under the cosh, Limerick hit four wides in the opening three minutes and that cost them dearly because Cork, with Goulding on target, scored in their very first attack.
Team captain Kieran O’Callaghan equalised for Limerick in the seventh minute but this proved to be the visitors’ only score of the first half while playing against the wind.
They matched Cork in the outfield exchanges but had no answer to the attacking skills of Goulding and O’Neill who destroyed Limerick’s dreams.
Goulding with five points and O’Neill with three were the only Cork forwards to score as the champions, with a late strike from full back Michael Shields eased into an interval lead of 0-9 to 0-1.
But with wing forward James Ryan working his socks off and full forward Sean Cronin exploding into the action, Limerick clawed their way back into contention after the break.
First Kieran O’Callaghan converted a difficult free and then Limerick, inspired by Cronin cut into Cork’s lead.
Three points in succession from Cronin narrowed the deficit to four points after just five minutes into the second half. This was Limerick’s golden period but before they could consolidate, Goulding rocked them when pointing two frees in rapid succession.
But when Goulding, with Cork leading by six points, had a goal effort splendidly saved by Tom Enright, Limerick gained in confidence and three points in succession from Ger Collins, O’Callaghan and wing back Robert Browne brought them back in contention and left just four points between them entering the closing quarter.
However, Cork responded in style and with Goulding again pointing magnificently, Cork stormed out of the danger zone.
Limerick bagged only one more score; a point from corner forward Mikey Kelly in the 52nd minute, and the night was to end on a sad note when midfielder Michael Galvin was stretchered off with a serious leg injury.
Cork finished off their opponents with two points from Goulding from frees and two more from substitute Fintan Gould and Carthach Keane in the closing stages.
Scorers, Cork: D Goulding 0-10 (0-3 frees), C O’Neill 0-3, M Shields, P Kerrigan, F Gould, C Keane 0-1 each.
Limerick: S Cronin 0-3, K O’Callaghan 0-3 (0-2 frees), M Kelly, G Collins, R Browne 0-1 each.
CORK: K O’Halloran, R Carey, M Sheilds, G O’Shea, S O’Donoghue, D Limerick, E Cadogan, F Lynch, C Keane, S McCarthy, C Callinan, P Kerrigan, C O’Neill, E Goulding, R Leahy. Subs. S Cahalane for Callinan, F Gould for Leahy, D Kearney for Keane, N Horgan for O’Shea.
LIMERICK: T Enright, M Cahill, D Woods, S Garvey, L Martin, L O’Dwyer, R Browne, M Galvin, L Kavanagh, J Ryan, K O’Callaghan, G Collins, M Kelly, S Cronin, N Mulvihill. Subs. E Horgan for Mulvihill, I Ryan for Kavanagh, Kavanagh for Galvin (leg injury), T Gleeson for Browne, M Boyce for Martin.
Referee: P O’Sullivan (Kerry).
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