Cork make it four from four after seeing off Wexford
The last time these two sides met it took extra time to decide who booked their place in the All-Ireland final. Fast toward to the 2017 league campaign and the battle was nowhere near as ferocious or strong when Cork dominated an uncharacteristically lifeless Wexford side in the Littlewoods Ireland Camogie League Division 1 fixture played at Cork IT on Sunday March 19th.
A Niamh McCarthy effort followed shortly after by a stylish Julia White point got Cork off to a strong start. On five minutes the leesiders were three clear when Amy O’Connor slotted over from a great Orla Cronin layoff. Wexford opened their scoring on six minutes when Chloe Fox was made to work hard to earn a point off the Cork defense. Gemma O’Connor put three between the sides again when her long range effort glided over from 50 metres.
Ashling Thompson and Gemma O’Connor at centre back and centre field respectively linked up well to avert any Wexford attacks and with Cronin and White proving lively in attack Cork had a stranglehold on the game. Cork, however, went without a score for nine minutes before Katrina Mackey pointed the first of her five frees on 16 minutes to stretch the lead to four points.
McCarthy handpassed over a hard earned point on 24 minutes when a goal was on the cards only that she was bottled up by her marker and did well to get her pass over the bar. A minute later Cronin pointed to see Cork 7 points to one to the good, and when Mackey pointed a 20 metre free it left the half time score Cork 0-08 Wexford 0-01.
Wexford had little answers to Corks dominance apart from the fact they thwarted any goal opportunities Cork built up. Over the course of the second half Cork doubled their tally with McCarthy adding to her first half haul and O’Connor mirroring her first half long range effort to double her tally. Having had a shot on goal denied on 37 mins by a diving save from D’arcy, Mackey added two from placed balls in the 41st and 42nd minute before Cronin doubled her haul to two on 43 minutes. Eimear O’Sullivan with her first touch after being introduced on 55 minutes slotted over before a Mackey free on 56 minutes rounded off Corks scoring for the afternoon. Lisa Bolger added two frees to Wexfords scoring on the 47th and 59th minute and Una Lacey registered a fine score from long range after she was introduced late in the second half. Cork secured their fourth victory and will take on All Ireland champions Kilkenny away in two weeks’ time.
Cork: A. Murray, L. O’Sullivan, R. Buckley (capt.), L. Treacy, P. Mackey, A. Thompson, C. Sigerson, G. O’Connor, J. Barry, A. O’Connor, O. Cronin, J. White, K. Mackey, N. McCarthy, L. Collins.
Subs: R. O’Shea for J. White (50 mins), L. Coppinger for L. O’Sullivan (52 mins), E. O’Sullivan for J. Barry (54 mins).
Wexford: M. D’arcy, L. O’Leary, S. Nolan, K. Atkinson, C. Storey, A. Leacy, S. O’Connor, S. Sinnott, A. Cardiff, S. Kehoe, C. Foxe, N. Fortune, B. Gordon (capt.), L. Bolger, S. Kehoe.
Subs: L. Walsh for A. Cardiff and U. Sinnott for S. Kehoe (43 mins), M. Leacy for S. Sinnott (46 mins), U Leacy for S. Kehoe and A. Cousins for L. O’Leary (48 mins) J. Dillon for B Gordon (53 mins), K O’Connor for A. Leacy and E Walsh for C. Foxe (56 mins).
Cork: K. Mackey 0-06 (0-05f), N. McCarthy 0-03, O. Cronin & G. O’Connor 0-02 each, J. White, A. O’Connor & E. O’Sullivan 0-01 each.
Wexford: L. Bolger 0-02 (0-02f), C. Foxe & U. Leacy 0-01 each
Referee: Ray Kelly, Kildare