Fourteen-man Kildare secured their first win of the Division 2 league campaign, at Cork’s expense, this afternoon.
Reduced to 14 men after Fergal Conway was black-carded on 43 minutes, he had earlier picked up a yellow, the visitors to Páirc Uí Chaoimh remained composed from there to the finishing post, outscoring their hosts by 0-5 to 0-2. Indeed, following Michael Hurley’s point, which came from the passage of play during which Conway was sent off, Cork scored only once more from play in the closing 28 minutes of action.
Kevin Feely (0-2), Ben McCormack and Neil Flynn (0-2, 0-1 ‘45) were all on target to deliver Kildare their opening victory of the 2019 league.
Ruairi Deane did have a goal chance on 62 minutes, which, if converted, would have edged Cork one in front, but Lilywhites goalkeeper Mark Donnellan tipped the shot onto the crossbar.
A pretty tame first-half ended with the visitors ahead by 1-4 to 0-5. The Kildare goal arrived in the 12th minute, Kevin Feely dispatching a penalty after Ronan O’Toole fouled Jimmy Hyland. That score put Kildare into a 1-1 to 0-2 lead, but Cork responded gamely, with points from Michael Hurley and a Ruairi Deane bringing the home side back on level terms.
The Cork forward unit were winning more than their fair share of the Kildare restarts, but the problem was the collective radar wasn’t functioning at all well when the posts were sized up.
The other standout problem in that first-half, from a Cork viewpoint, was the decision to go with two sweepers - Mark Collins and Tomás Clancy - meant there was a paucity of Cork players in the opposition half when the Rebels attempted to counter.
Cork finished the half with eight wides, Luke Connolly, who did enjoy his finest afternoon on the frees, responsible for five of those misses.
Kildare would finish with 13 after Keith Cribbin was black-carded in second-half stoppages (Cian O’Neill had used all his subs by this point), with Cork sub Brian Hurley following him to the line shortly after for a red card offence.
K Feely (1-1, 1-0 pen); A Tyrrell (0-2 frees), N Flynn (0-1 ‘45), B McCormack (0-2 each); J Hyland, F Dowling (0-1 each).
M Hurley (0-5); L Connolly (0-2, 0-1 free); R Deane, M Collins (0-1 free), S White (0-1 each).
M White; K O’Donovan, K Flahive, C Dennehy; J Loughrey, S Cronin, M Taylor; I Maguire, R O’Toole; T Clancy, E McSweeney, M Collins; L Connolly, R Deane, M Hurley.
P Kerrigan for McSweeney (HT); S White for R O’Toole (49); L O’Donovan for Loughrey (53); B Hurley for Connolly (56); C O’Hanlon for Clancy (62).
M Donnellan; M Dempsey, M O’Grady, D Hyland; J Murray, E Doyle, K Cribbin; K Feely, F Conway; C Hartley, F Dowling, D Slattery; A Tyrrell, B McCormack, J Hyland.
A Masteron for Hartley (HT); N Flynn for Dowling (45); C O’Donoghue for Murray (54); E O’Flaherty for Tyrrell (57); J Gibbons for Hyland (66).
S Lonergan (Kildare).