Cork's footballers claim draw against Kildare

KILDARE 0-14 CORK 0-14

KILDARE 0-14 CORK 0-14

Cork came from four points down with ten minutes remaining to claim a share of the spoils in a high-quality Allianz NFL Division 2 tussle at Newbridge this afternoon.

The Rebels started the stronger and finished the stronger, with Kevin O'Sullivan's injury-time point the crucial score in seeing them gain parity.

Really though, this was a game Kildare should have won and although John Doyle (0-5) did lead the scoring, he failed to converted other chances which could have sealed the win for Kieran McGeeney's men.

There was also the controversial awarding of a '45' to Cork, in the closing quarter-hour, when it was clear that Daniel Goulding had nudged the ball over the end-line and it should, in fact, have been a Kildare kick-out.

Adding to Kildare's frustration, Donnacha O'Connor duly punted the '45' through the uprights.

In a lively opening quarter, Cork hit the front thanks to points from Fintan Goold and Goulding before Kildare answered back through Doyle (free) and Padraig O'Neill, who kicked over on the run.

A key area for Cork was the half-forward line where their nippy forwards were able to pull their markers away from centre-field, and centre-forward Goold was particularly influential in this regard.

The space was freed up for Cork to collect a series of well-struck points, including a fine 'team' score which ended with Graham Canty rifling over off his left.

That Cork spell of dominance left them 0-6 to 0-3 ahead but Kildare responded magnificently before half time.

Their passing became crisper and their off-the-ball running left Cork stretched as the Lilywhites mustered five points in a row.

O'Neill and Michael Conway closed the gap to one point before Doyle hit a hat-trick of scores, including two from open play.

0-8 to 0-6 ahead at half-time, McGeeney's men would probably have preferred to skip the interval break in favour of playing on.

But they managed to keep up that high standard of attacking play on the resumption, with James Kavanagh growing into the game.

The talented wing forward grabbed four points from play in the second half and had his stinging, goal-bound shot not been saved by Cork goalkeeper Alan Quirke, it would surely have been a case of game over.

However, Cork were still in touch and their manager Conor Counihan unloaded his bench in the closing 17 minutes, going all-out attack with Paul O'Flynn, Paul Kerrigan, John Hayes and O'Sullivan introduced.

Goold (0-2) and Noel O'Leary put just a point between the sides.

Substitutes Paudie Kissane and O'Flynn laid the groundwork for O'Leary's point, which he bent over off the outside of his right boot.

A defensive steal by Conway set up a Kavanagh point at the other end but Cork snuffed out two more points before the final whistle to bring them level.

Kerrigan bisected the posts from a left wing position and then O'Sullivan fisted over in injury-time to rescue a draw for his side.

KILDARE: S McCormack; D Brennan, K O'Neill, H McGrillen; B Flanagan, M Foley, M Conway (0-1); D Flynn, D Earley (0-1); E Callaghan, P O'Neill (0-2), J Kavanagh (0-4); K Donnelly, R Sweeney, J Doyle (0-5, 0-2f).

Subs used: K Brennan for Earley (20-21, blood sub), A Smith (0-1) for Donnelly (28), E O'Flaherty for P O'Neill (61, yellow card), M O'Flaherty for Conway (69).

CORK: A Quirke; J Miskella, R Carey, A Lynch; N O'Leary (0-1), G Canty (0-1), G Spillane; A O'Connor (0-1), P O'Neill; C McCarthy (0-1), F Goold (0-4), P Kelly; D Goulding (0-1), M Cussen, D O'Connor (0-3, 0-2 '45').

Subs used: P Kissane for Canty (47 mins), P O'Flynn for Kelly (54), P Kerrigan (0-1) for McCarthy (55), J Hayes for O'Neill (58), K O'Sullivan (0-1) for Goulding (67).

Referee: Derek Fahy (Longford)

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