Donegal come good in second half to outgun Cork in a thrilling encounter

Peter Campbell


Peter Campbell


Donegal come good in second half to outgun Cork in a thrilling encounter

Michael Murphy - hit 0-6 for Donegal

Donegal are still in the hunt for promotion after a great second half performance saw them defeat Cork in Pairc Ui Rinn on Saturday.

Cork 1-12
Donegal 1-19

It was a very good display from Donegal, who were the better side and but for a number of poor wides, they would have won more easily.
But they were made fight and when the game was there for the taking, they stood up and took some great scores. Cork were not helped by using their subs too early and they ended up with just 12 men on the field.
In a cracking first half it was close until the final minutes when Cork hit 1-2 in the final few minutes to lead by 1-8 to 0-6 at the break.
In a very open contest with refreshingly attacking football, Donegal gave as good as they got until those final few minutes of the half. Indeed, Donegal, if they had taken their chances, would have been ahead.
They could have had a goal from the throw-in as Caolan McGonagle and Hugh McFadden combined to put Jamie Brennan in on goal. Brennan went for goal but it went just over but Michael Murphy was waiting on the edge of the square for a tap in goal.
Mark Collins levelled for Cork before Ryan McHugh found Michael Murphy who was fouled. The free was moved on and Murphy tapped it over.
Michael Hurley, twice, levelled with Osin Gallen getting the other Donegal point to leave it 0-3 each after seven minutes.
Donegal had chances with Caolan McGonagle lacking composure when put through while Caolan Ward had an effort that was too high and short.
Cork then took a three point lead by the 22nd minute. The first came after a wayward Caolan McGonagle pass which was punished by Ruairi Deane. When a Hugh McFadden effort for a point dropped short, Eoghan McSweeney found the range at the other end. Then Niall O'Donnell was wide after a great run by Eoghan Ban Gallagher and again Cork came forward for Luke Connolly to point a free.
Donegal responded to be level by the 33rd minute. Jamie Brennan persisted to win a free for Michael Murphy to point. Then a great move from the back finished with Leo McLoone releasing Ciaran Thompson to score, while a minute later Michael Murphy and Niall O'Donnell combined to set up Caolan Ward to level.
But then Donegal were hit by that late first half Cork rally. Ruairi Deane did the damage, cutting the Donegal defence wide open. His shot was brilliantly saved by Shaun Patton but the ball rebounded and seemed to be going out for a '45' but Mattie Taylor was alert to follow up and first time to the net.
Eoghan McSweeney quickly added a point while Jamie Brennan was wide from a good position at the other end. And then just before the half-time whistle McSweeney added another to leave Cork five clear facing into the wind in the second half.
Cork increased the margin to six inside a minute of the restart when Mark Collins punished a poor kick-out but Dáire Ó Baoill, in after 23 minutes of the first half, hit back and Michael Murphy showed his skill to dummy and kick a great point with his left.
It could have been better as Ciaran Thompson and Oisin Gallen hit two bad wides.
They were made pay when Luke Connolly converted a free but Ryan McHugh found space to cut the lead and Jamie Brennan won a free for Murphy to leave just three between them after 47 minutes.
Murphy pointed a '45' and Jamie Brennan hit a great point from distance to leave the minimum between them. However, from the kick-out Donegal left Luke Connolly all alone to take his score.
But Donegal responded again with Niall O'Donnell finding the range. They got back on terms on 57 minutes when Stephen McMenamin won a free for Murphy to point and leave it 0-14 to 1-11.
They then went ahead thanks to a wonder ball from Dáire Ó Baoill who found Hugh McFadden in space going through the middle and he fired over on the run.
Cork got back on terms after a free on the 45m line was moved on for dissent and it made it easy for Luke Connolly.
Ryan McHugh and Jamie Brennan had wides while Ciaran Thompson made a great intercept at the other end, before Niall O'Donnell swung over the lead point with his left. Hugh McFadden fielded the kick-out and Dáire Ó Baoill set up O'Donnell to push Donegal two ahead with a minute of normal time left.
Cork were reduced to 14 when Ian Maguire went off injured and all subs were used. And it went all wrong for the Rebels as Mark Collins was sent off on a second yellow and Luke Connolly had to go off injured.
Donegal took advantage with Dáire Ó Baoill pointing after being through on goal. He was almost closed down but somehow squirmed and hooked the ball over. Then Niall O'Donnell intercepted the kick-out to set up Jamie Brennan for a goal with five of the six minutes of added time played.
And they could have added a second goal when Ryan McHugh got through but he opted to take a point with just the 'keeper to beat.

Scorers - Cork: Luke Connolly 0-4,3f; Mattie Taylor 1-0; Eoghan McSweeney 0-3; Michael Hurley, Mark Collins 0-2 each; Ruairi Deane 0-1
Donegal: Michael Murphy 0-6,4f,45; Jamie Brennan 1-2; Niall O'Donnell 0-3; Dáire Ó Baoill, Ryan McHugh 0-2 each; Caolan Ward, Oisin Gallen, Ciaran Thompson, Hugh McFadden 0-1 each.

CORK: Micheal Martin; Sam Ryan, Kevin Flahive, Conor Dennehy; Kevin Crowley, Thomas Clancy, Mattie Taylor; Ian Maguire, Cillian O'Hanlon; Eoghan McSweeney, Luke Connolly, Ruairi Deane; Michael Hurley, Mark Collins, Paul Kerrigan.
Subs: Mark White for M Martin 42; Ronan O'Toole for Kerrigan, Kevin O'Driscoll for Taylor, both 57; Cian Kiely for Dennehy 62; Sean Powter for Crowley 66

DONEGAL: Shaun Patton; Stephen McMenamin, Eamonn Doherty, Eoghan Bán Gallagher; Caolan Ward, Leo McLoone, Ryan McHugh; Hugh McFadden, Michael Murphy; Niall O'Donnell, Ciaran Thompson, Caolan McGonagle; Oisin Gallen, Jamie Brennan, Paul Brennan.
Subs: Dáire Ó Baoill for P Brennan 23; Paddy McGrath for C Ward ht; Eoin McHugh for Gallen 73; Neil McGee for E Doherty 75

REFEREE: David Gough (Meath)