Cork have enough to see off Déise and reach All-Ireland camogie semi-final

Rebels have won all their group games to date, securing a place in the last four of the Glen Dimplex All-Ireland series
Cork have enough to see off Déise and reach All-Ireland camogie semi-final

Cork's Cliona Healy out in front of Waterford's Orla Hickey. Picture: Noel Browne

Cork 0-16 Waterford 0-10 

CORK are through to the Glen Dimplex All-Ireland Senior Camogie semi-final after a six-point win over Waterford in a game that failed to ignite in Walsh Park. The job however was done.

They were forced into another change to their planned start line-up with the omission of Orla Cronin, her failure to partake in training during the week the deciding risk factor.

Cliona Healy and Izzy O’Regan came in for Cronin and Kate Wall from last week’s clash with Dublin. Ciara O’Sullivan replaced the injured Laura Treacy, named at centre-back but playing at midfield because Ashling Thompson as expected played defensively in Treacy’s slot.

Perfect conditions with just a slight wind blowing left to right from the stand side favoured Waterford.

Going into the game with Waterford goalkeeper Brianne O’Regan and right half-forward Abby Flynn holding worrying injuries to their ankle and hamstring respectively it was no surprise to see Flynn replaced on 25 minutes.

A defensive Waterford, with often four in their full-back line, were hoping to capitalise on the distance striking of Beth Carton and Niamh Rockett. Looking up the pitch during the opening 10 minutes there was no attacking player inside Waterford’s own ’45, Roisin Kirwan and Niamh Rockett drifted in and out but with Ashling Thompson as a free player, Waterford weren’t making much headway. Thompson was on too much ball and Cork were working it out with ease.

Cork's Ciara O'Sullivan passes forward under pressure from Waterford's Lorraine Bray. Picture: Noel Browne
Cork's Ciara O'Sullivan passes forward under pressure from Waterford's Lorraine Bray. Picture: Noel Browne

Cork always kept two or three attackers inside with Katrina Mackey hovering between the 30 and 45. It was strange to see Cork’s number two Meabh Murphy take up a corner-forward position as Cork pushed up their free defenders. 

They didn’t need more than the one sweeper in Thompson. Murphy was the one to get Cork on the scoreboard in the third minute.

Some poor passing by Cork gifted a couple of opportunities to Waterford around the 25-minute mark but they failed to capitalise hitting dropped shots and their fifth wide, seven by the end of the opening 30 minutes. Had Waterford’s accuracy not let them down they would have led at the break. A low-scoring first half wasn’t of the standard expected with passes going astray, overplaying the ball and missed targets.

Mackey was Cork’s biggest threat up front and a one-two with Amy O’Connor saw the latter pulled down in the square on 34 minutes, leading to a booking for Keeley Corbett Barry and a penalty. Chloe Sigerson shot wide leaving Cork just two points to the good at half time.

Beth Carton and Saoirse McCarthy swapped points by the 36th minute. The free Thompson was still doing a lot of damage to Waterford. 

Hannah looney replaced Ciara O’Sullivan and moved into midfield. A couple of wasted chances by Cork before Mackey stretched their lead by three.

Cork couldn’t quite shake the Waterford challenge off. They’d hit two, Waterford would hit one back with Cork only extending their lead by an additional one by the 50th minute. 

Cork's Izzy O'Regan and Waterford's Aoife Landers in a battle for possession during the first half at Walsh Park. Picture: Noel Browne
Cork's Izzy O'Regan and Waterford's Aoife Landers in a battle for possession during the first half at Walsh Park. Picture: Noel Browne

Two from Cork, two from Waterford before two converted frees by Amy O’Connor in additional time gave Cork a cushion. Cliona Healy, Laura Hayes and Beth Carton stuck points before a 69th-minute penalty was awarded to the home side. 

Up stepped Carton again and she struck it well but a brilliant diving save and clearance by Amy Lee signalled the final whistle and Cork are gone the direct route on twelve points. Waterford remain on six and second-placed.

Scorers for Cork: K Mackey 0-4, A O’Connor 0-4 (0-3 f), C Healy 0-3, L Hayes 0-2, M Murphy, F Keating, S McCarthy 0-1 each.

Waterford: B Carton 0-7 (0-4 f, 0-2 45), N Rockett 0-2, S Lacey 0-1. 

CORK: A Lee; M Murphy, L Coppinger, M Cahalane; L Hayes, C O’Sullivan, S McCarthy; K O’Mahoney, A Thompson; C Healy, F Keating, I O’Regan; A O’Connor, C Sigerson, K Mackey.

Subs: H Looney for C O’Sullivan (39), E Murphy for I O’Regan (43), K Wall for K Mackey (59), Ali Smith for C Sigerson (59).

WATERFORD: B O’Regan; K Corbett Barry, I Heffernan, M Power; O Hickey, C Carroll, A Landers; L Bray; C Griffin; A Flynn, B Carton, M O’Brien; R Walsh, R Kirwan, N Rockett.

Subs: T Power for A Flynn (inj 24), S Lacey for O Hickey (inj 36), C O’Sullivan for R Kirwan (49), A O’Sullivan for L Bray (inj 55).

Referee: Ray Kelly (Kildare).

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