TG4 LADIES FOOTBALL ALL-IRELAND SEMI-FINAL: FULL TIME:
DUBLIN 2-14 KERRY 3-8
Midfielder Fiona Corcoran slipped home the vital goal that split Dublin and Kerry, 2-14 to 3-8 in today's first TG4 All-Ireland semi-final, helping new Jackies boss John O'Leary through to his first ever ladies decider.
Despite conceding two first half goals, and three in all to teenager corner forward Kacey O’Driscoll, O’Leary’s side pulled through thanks to six points from their own scoring general Mary Nevin, and two second half goals from Bernie Finlay and player-of-the-match Corcoran.
Lynsey Davey and Elaine Kelly opened the Dubs scoring in the first five minutes before Ger O’Shea quickly replied and O’Driscoll, beating goalkeeper Cliodhna O’Connor to the bounce, raced through to net.
Then Dublin upped their challenge, seeking a second semi-final win over Kerry in twelve months, as Nevin, Ashling McCormack, 36-year-old veteran Angie McNally and Nevin again saw the metropolitans pull 0-6 to 1-0 clear.
O’Driscoll plucked a long ball from the Portlaoise sky to volley home her second midway through, but with O’Shea’s point their only over, amongst four first half wides, Dublin ended the half 0-11 to 2-1 in front.
Nevin tagged on five of those scores, with her third free in injury time ending a run of five consecutive scores from the blues.
Mindful of last year’s collapse to Dublin where O’Shea was their lone scorer in the second half, Kerry boss Robbie Griffin stoked the fires at half time and by the tenth minute the Munster runners-up held a one-point lead.
O’Driscoll latched onto another loose, long ball to evade O'Connor again and hit an empty net for a 3-4 to 0-12 lead for the 11-time champions.
Dublin, rallied by McNally up front, picked off points from Ashling McCormack and Nevin again to keep up the chase. Midway through the half, Dublin regained the initiative as Bernie Finlay goaled, turning past marker Evelyn O’Connell, after Nevin’s free had come back off a Kerry upright.
Although O’Driscoll managed to run her tally up to 3-1, and Patrice Dennehy pointed also in the closing stages, Kerry’s luck was out on 57 minutes as Corcoran bulldozed through on a solo run to strike past a stranded Andrea O’Donoghue, and seal a second successive final for the Martin Farrell-led Dubs.
Scorers: Dublin: M Nevin 0-6 (3f), B Finlay, F Corcoran 1-0 each, A McCormack 0-3, E Kelly, A McNally 0-2 each, L Davey 0-1
Kerry: K O’Driscoll 3-1, G O’Shea 0-3 (1f), D Corridon, K Kenneally, N Feally, P Dennehy 0-1 each
Dublin: C O’Connor; S Farrelly, N Comyn, M Kavanagh; N McEvoy, L Keegan, G Fay; M Farrell; F Corcoran; E Kelly, B Finlay, L Davey; A McCormack, A McNally, M Nevin.
Subs used: L Kelly for E Kelly (51 mins), N Hurley for Fay (52), K Hopkins for Farrell (56), S Aherne for McCormack (59)
Kerry: A O'Donoghue; G O'Malley, G Ni Fhlatharta, J Murnane; K Gleeson, E O'Connell, R Ni Chinneide; C Kelly, J Murphy; S Delaney, S O'Connor, P Dennehy; N Fealey, G O'Shea, K O'Driscoll.
Subs used: K Kenneally for O’Malley (29 mins), D Corridon for Delaney (ht)
Half time: Dublin 0-11 Kerry 2-1
More to come…