The revival of Cork Hurling 2013 by Conor McGrath Mar11


Related Posts

Share This

The revival of Cork Hurling 2013 by Conor McGrath

2013 started with a big win for Cork in Pairc Ui Chaoimh when they tore Tipperary to pieces. However, this led to four narrow defeats which gave Cork serious trouble. They had to play Clare in a relegation battle in the Gaelic Grounds in Limerick. The game was a close encounter with no team wanting to give in. Clare started to build a handy lead and at one stage they were seven points ahead. Cork somehow found a burst of energy from nowhere and drew level. The last few minutes were tense with neither side breaking the score line. The game went to extra time. Something had to give and it ended up that Cork had just gone one step too far behind. This game told us that Cork and Clare were out of contention for the Liam McCarthy cup in September but in fact these two teams turn out to be the revelation of the summer.

In the first round of the Munster championship Cork met Clare once again. This game proved to be another cracker with the Rebels coming out on top with an unbelievable performance. Two weeks later Cork met Limerick in the final. It was nip and tuck for the first thirty minutes until Cork were reduced to fourteen men. This was a poor decision by the referee which proved very costly in the end for Cork. This left them facing Kilkenny in Thurles in an enthralling match. People thought this was going to be the end of Cork hurling for another year. They were proven completely wrong. Cork came out and blitzed Kilkenny winning by six points in the end. This blew the championship up a notch and Cork stated that they were not going to be beaten too easily from then on.

They now had to meet Dublin in Croke Park in the All-Ireland semi-final. It was set to be a mouth-watering clash between the two sides. Luckily for the huge crowds that travelled it didn’t disappoint. It was blow-for-blow and point-for-point for sixty minutes of the game. Then Dublin was reduced harshly to fourteen men when their centre forward was sent off with a second yellow card. Cork pushed on and ran out to be four point winners in the end of a classic match. This meant that Cork and Clare would meet on the first Sunday in September for the third time.

On the day of the game Cork seemed to be nervous and were not doing the basics right. Clare seemed to be winning a lot of the battles but Cork made sure that they could not get too far ahead. With twenty minutes to go Cork went on a rampage and scored three brilliant goals. It was all square with two minutes left and then Cork were on the attack and Patrick Horgan scored a wonder point to put Cork ahead. Time was up when the Clare keeper took the puck out. Clare won it and their corner back scored a nice point. The match was over and a replay was fixed for two weeks later.

The two weeks flew and the game was another cracker. It started at a rip-roaring pace with Clare getting three early goals. Then came Antony Nash’s moment when he beat thirteen men from a twenty-one yard free to score a goal. Cork kept battling but Clare were cute; they kept just that bit ahead until Cork got a run and they drew level. Clare went straight down the other end of the pitch to score another goal. To Cork’s credit they kept fighting but just couldn’t break the Clare defence. Clare ran out six point winners but we all know Cork will be back next year to fight again.