Tipp blitz Déise to claim Munster title

Tipperary 4-14 Waterford 2-16

Tipperary 4-14 Waterford 2-16

Tipperary claimed their second Munster senior hurling title in succession when they withstood a late Waterford fightback at Semple Stadium in Thurles today.

Tipp led for most of the game and were a stronger unit than their opponents, who relied too much on John Mullane and Eoin Kelly for scores, though Michael Walsh was outstanding at centre-back for Davy Fitzerald's Déise.

However, Waterford's defence found it tough to cope with Tipp's attackers, with all six starting forwards scoring, Lar Corbett helping himself to 2-2 while Eoin Kelly scored 1-3 before retiring injured at half-time.

Early on, things looked to be going Waterford's way when Kelly goaled from a 20m free to make it 1-2 to 0-1 in the fifth minute, but 18 minutes would pass before their next score, a good goal from Mullane, by which time Tipp had scored six points.

Seamus Callanan's goal from a good Noel McGrath hand pass helped hand the initiative back to the home side, and when Eoin Kelly struck for his goal in the 26th minute, they led by 2-8 to 2-3.

Waterford were not playing all that badly but were struggling for scores, while Tipp were having no trouble doing so, Corbett's first goal in first-half injury time making 3-10 to 2-4 at the break.

Six minutes into the second half, he struck again, and Waterford looked really up against it, but they began to get on top in midfield as Tipp began to fade.

When Callanan pointed in the 61st minute, it was 4-14 to 2-10 for Tipp, but that was to be their last score, as Waterford reeled off six without reply. However, poor wides were costly and their comeback just fell short.

Scorers for Tipperary: L Corbett 2-2, E Kelly 1-3 (0-2f), S Callanan 1-1, N McGrath 0-3 (0-1f), C O'Mahony (0-1f), S McGrath, P Kerwick, J O'Brien, B Dunne 0-1 each.

Waterford: E Kelly 1-7f, J Mullane 1-5, S Molumphy 0-2, R Foley, D Shanahan 0-1 each.

TIPPERARY: B Cummins; P Stapleton, P Curran, C O'Brien; D Fanning, C O'Mahony, P Maher; J Woodlock, S McGrath; P Kerwick, S Callanan, J O'Brien; E Kelly, L Corbett, N McGrath. Subs: B Maher for Curran (34), W Ryan for Kelly (half-time), B Dunne for Woodlock (46), H Maloney for Kerwick (56), M Webster for O'Brien (69).

WATERFORD: C Hennessy; E Murphy, D Prendergast, N Connors; T Browne, M Walsh, A Kearney; K Moran, S O'Sullivan; J Nagle, S Prendergast, S Molumphy; J Mullane, J Kennedy, E Kelly. Subs: D Shanahan for Kennedy (27), R Foley for Moran, E McGrath for Nagle (both 45), S Casey for Mullane (blood, 46), M Shanahan for Mullane (blood, 53-54), M Shanahan for S Prendergast (55).

Referee: J Sexton (Cork).

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