BY KEVIN EGAN
CORK sit on top of Division 1A of the Very Camogie League after Saturday afternoon’s series of games, but Matthew Twomey’s side was pushed to the wire by Tipperary at The Ragg, the first time this year that serious questions were asked of last year’s league and All-Ireland finalists.
It was Tipperary who started the sharper of the two Munster rivals, as they edged 0-4 to 0-2 in front. Nenagh’s Grace O’Brien was in prolific form in the early stages as she fired over three early points from play, with Eimear McGrath adding another. Amy O’Connor and Chloe Sigerson (free) hit back for the Rebels.
The contest shifted in the Rebels’ favour when Orlaith Cahalane produced a mesmerising solo run to get beyond the Tipp defence before rifling low in to the bottom left corner of the net and they pushed on from there, with O’Connor and Fiona Keating both working the scoreboard as Cork moved 1-8 to 0-7 ahead at the break.
O’Brien continued to lead the line brilliantly up front for Tipperary and she fired in a quickfire 1-1 at the beginning of the final period to leave the sides deadlocked, Róisín Howard finding a deft pass to pick out O’Brien.
These two sides, both unbeaten before Saturday, were level at 1-8, 1-9 and 1-10 apiece before Cork struck two in a row with Emma Murphy grabbing the pick of the pair. Despite their best efforts, Tipp were unable to regain parity with Keating grabbing the final score of the game in the 67th minute to seal a crucial 1-14 to 1-12 win for Cork.