Waterford rue misses as Cork book semi-final meeting with Meath

Cork were made to fight all the way in tough Pairc Ui Chaoimh battle
Waterford rue misses as Cork book semi-final meeting with Meath

1st August 2021..... Cork's Eimear Scally shoots from Waterford's Karen McGrath during the TG4 All Ireland championship 2021 senior quarter final at Pairc Ui Chaoimh

All-Ireland ladies SFC quarter-final: Cork 0-14 Waterford 0-8 

After a tense battle at Pairc Ui Chaoimh, Cork are into the TG4 All-Ireland Ladies Senior Football championship semi-final after a six-point win over Waterford

They were made to fight all the way by their opponents who will rue two missed goal chances in the second half.

But in the end Cork saw the game out to advance to the semi-final.

Eimear Scally opened the scoring from a free in the third minute off her left foot. Three minutes later she showed the right is just as good, slotting over another free.

Cork were dominating the opening exchanges and it was no great surprise when they extended their lead further, with Hannah Looney setting up Ciara O'Sullivan to point.

With nine minutes played Cork were dealt a blow with Orla Finn having to go off injured, replaced by Eimear Kiely.

Waterford got off the mark when Maria Delahunty raised the white flag from a free and she got a second, also a free, to put one between them. However, she was then guilty of a careless tackle on Erika O'Shea, which saw her sin-binned.

Eimear Kiely scored for Cork just before the first water break as they led 0-4 to 0-2.

From the restart Cork regained possession with Aine O'Sullivan raising the white flag as the home side were taking advantage of the extra player.

O'Sullivan pointed again, before a last-gasp block from Laura Mulcahy denied Sadhbh O'Leary what looked like a certain goal. From the resulting 45 O'Sullivan got her third in a row as Cork continued to dominate.

Waterford struck back with Eimear Fennell taking over the free-taking duties in Delanhunty's absence to pull one back. She was on target again to make it 0-4 to 0-7, with 23 minutes gone.

Fennell made it three in a row, with Waterford's first point from play as they were back to 15 players.

Cork finished the half strongly with Kiely extending their lead, before Ciara O'Sullivan made it 0-9 to 0-5. Scally got the last score of the half as Cork led by double scores at the break, 0-10 to 0-5.

Despite playing against the wind, Waterford were much the better side at the start of the second half, with Fennell raising the white flag and Delahunty also scoring to put three between the sides, with 33 minutes played.

Cork were guilty of some sloppy play and squandered a number of chances before Ciara O'Sullivan went close with a shot for goal, just going the wrong side of the post.

Another mistake from Cork let Waterford in but with an open goal in front of her Kate McGrath shot wide.

Even with that warning Cork were still giving the ball away too easily at times, with credit having to go to Waterford for the pressure they were putting them under.

Just before the water break Cork got their first point of the second half, with Scally raising the white flag, to make it 0-11 to 0-7.

Again Waterford drove forward on the restart with Megan Dunford pointing. Doireann O'Sullivan, who is continuing her return to full fitness, pointed for Cork.

Another quick free from Delahunty found Fennelly and another goal chance went wide, Sadhbh O'Leary increased Cork's lead as they started to go up the gears to try and finish the game out.

With time running out, Doireann O'Sullivan pointed again to see Cork into the semi-final in two weeks' time against Meath.

Scorers for Cork: E Scally 0-4 (2f), A O'Sullivan 0-3, C O'Sullivan, E Kiely, D O'Sullivan 0-2 each, S O'Leary 0-1.

Waterford: M Delahunty 0-3 (2f), E Fennell 0-4 (2f), M Dunford 0-1.

CORK: M O’Brien; M Ambrose, R Phelan, E Meaney; E O’Shea, M Cahalane, M Duggan; A Hutchings, H Looney; L O'Mahony, C O’Sullivan, Á O’Sullivan; S O’Leary, O Finn, E Scally.

Subs: E Kiely for O Finn, (9 inj), D O'Sullivan for L O'Mahony (ht), K Quirke for A O'Sullivan (40), L Coppinger for E Scally (55), S Kelly for M Ambrose (58).

WATERFORD: R Landers; M Dunford, L Mulcahy, R Casey; R Tobin, Karen McGrath, A Mullaney; C Fennell, M Wall; S Dunphy, B McMaugh, Kate McGrath; E Fennell, M Delahunty, A Wall.

Subs: L Cusack for S Dunphy (38), C McCarthy for E Fennell (56), N Power for B McMaugh (58), S Coakey for A Mullaney (59).

Referee: Seamus Mulvihill, Kerry.

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