KEY attackers led by example as the Tyrone Minors cruised to a brilliant victory over Cork in the All-Ireland semi-final at O’Connor Park in Tullamore.
A magnificent display from the Red Hand teenagers saw them cruise past Cork on a score of 0-23 to 1-6 and into the All-Ireland Final. Now hopes are high that the Thomas Markham Cup showpiece will take place at Croke Park next weekend as curtain-raiser to Tyrone senior semi-final clash against Kerry.
For the moment, though, both the players and management can reflect on a job very well done here. From start to finish they were the dominant team, with a 0-10 to 0-3 interval lead being translater into a very emphatic 14 point victory by the final whistle.
The Tyrone lads set the tempo for the tie right from the start. Early points courtesy of Eoin McElholm and Hugh Cunningham settled them and they were firmly in control on the scoreboard at least by the end of the first quarter.
But their efforts also owed much to the defence, in that first half especially and throughout. Disciplined tackling and vision from the likes of Ronan Fox, Callan Kelly, Shea O’Hare and Matthew Mallon helped them build from the back and the forwards certainly capitalised.
Only the heroics of Cork goalkeeper, Daniel Walsh prevented Tyrone from scoring the goal which would really have consolidated their lead. Nevertheless, Cormac Devlin, Eoin McElholm, Ronan Cassidy, Ronan Strain and Hugh Cunningham all scored to leave them 0-10 to 0-3 ahead.
It was that man Conor Owens again who grabbed the initiative on the resumption. Within minutes of being introduced as a half-time substitute, he had scored four points from frees and play to snuff out any slim hope that Cork might have entertained of finding a way back into the game.
The closing stages as a result were a procession for Tyrone. Ronan Cassidy, Eoin McElholm and Jack Martin all scored to complete the 0-23 to 1-6 win.