Connolly is capable of moments of genuine artistry as he showed when firing Nemo to the All-Ireland club final and he carried that form into the Cork geansaí on Saturday night. His scores from play were as classy as any you’d see from Conor McManus or Paul Geaney.
That restricted Tipp’s attacking trio of Michael Quinlivan, Liam McGrath, and Conor Sweeney to 0-3 from play. Ronan McCarthy and his selectors had them drilled to defend as a unit and they forced turnovers by hunting in packs.
Despite a sticky 15-minute second-half spell when Cork squandered some decent opportunities and Tipp trimmed the gap to five points, McCarthy’s charges never looked like losing. Perhaps because they had to play a week earlier against Waterford, Tipp were flat, but conversely Cork hit all the right notes.