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CORK will play Galway in the All-Ireland Minor A Camogie Final after the Rebels saw off a dogged Clare by 1-11 to 0-9 in Ballyagran, and Galway accounted for Tipperary in a cracker by 4-9 to 1-10 in Banagher.
Mairéad Dillon struck for an incredible four goals and point, and Galway needed such a significant contribution as Tipperary threw everything at them.
The game got off to a terrific start with the teams level on 1-2 each after just eight minutes. Caoimhe Perdue opened the scoring with the first of her four points after just 50 seconds for Tipp but Dillon buried a shot to the net for her first goal soon after. Casey Hennessy careered through the middle of the Galway defence to score a goal at the other end in the sixth minute though and the Munster women were very much in the game.
Niamh Long was doing a very good marking job on Siobhán McGrath and playing into a strong wind, Tippe were trailing by just two points, after Niamh Horan converted three placed balls for Galway, when Dillon registered her second goal to make it 2-5 to 1-3 at the interval.
Tipperary brought it back to three points through Perdue and Hennessy and that was still the margin entering the final quarter. The Premier girls spurned some good chances with the elements in their favour and were made to pay when Dillon completed her hat-trick with a stunning strike off the sod in the 47th minute.
Dillon was denied her fourth goal by a point-blank save from Aoife Butler but the excellent Tipp goalkeeper could do nothing to deny her five minutes from time, Dillon doing the needful after McGrath fetched Sarah Healy’s long delivery and laid it off.
In Ballyagran, Aoife Power got Clare off to a good start but points from Aoife Hurley, Cliona Healy and Saoirse McCarthy enabled Cork to squeak ahead after eight minutes.
The diminutive Fina O’Brien and Brídín Dinan edged Clare in front but then came the crucial score with a goal after 20 minutes from Fiona Keating, who poked the sliotar to the net after McCarthy landed it in the danger zone.
McCarthy after 20 minutes, the Courcey Rovers player poking the sliotar to the net from close range. Ciara O’Sullivan added a point soon after to put a goal between them, and with Dinan and Hurley exchanging scores, that was the margin at half time, 1-6 to 0-6.
Linda Daly made it a two-point game and Róisín Minogue was doing so much to keep Cork at bay but points from Healy and Fiona Keating put clear daylight between the sides for the first time with eight minute remaining. And Jerry Wallace’s crew continued their strong finish, McCarthy and skipper Moira Barrett among the scorers to keep Clare at arm’s length.
Dinan converted a free and had a late penalty saved by Sarah Ahern, ensuring that it was Cork who would advance by 1-11 to 0-9 to cross swords with Galway on April 28th.

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