Allianz Football League Division 1 – Cork 0-14 Mayo 0-13

Allianz Football League Division I: Mayo 0-13 Cork 0-14

Two late points from Paul Kerrigan and Donncha O’Connor completed a remarkable turnaround for Cork as they beat Mayo by a point in a thrilling encounter in McHale Park. The result all but assures Cork of a place in the semi-finals of Division I of the Allianz Football League but the Rebels’ late rally means Mayo are up against it in their quest to preserve their top flight status. James Horan’s men now sit joint bottom on four points alongside Donegal and Laois but given that the Westerners have to play Kerry and Dublin in their last two games, it will be a big ask for them to avoid being in the bottom two come the close of the competition.

Mayo had led for almost the entire game, and they profited from the first-half sending off of Cork’s Mark Collins. The game was a low-scoring affair for much of the first half, with Mayo 0-4 to 0-2 ahead after 20 minutes, Donal Vaughan’s fine effort the pick of their early scores. Cork got within one through Paddy Kelly before efforts from the on-form Michael Conroy, substitute Conor Mortimer and Alan Dillon left the home side 0-7 to 0-3 ahead at the break. Collins was dismissed shortly before the sides went in at the break after an entanglement with Vaughan.

The breeze had favoured Mayo in the first half but they stayed in control for much of the second period, and were 0-10 to 0-5 up after 45 minutes. Mortimer had kicked a few more points, while Andy Moran was also showing well. However, it was when Mayo went five clear that Cork brought the required urgency to their game, and they almost goaled on 51 minutes when Donncha O’Connor’s fine shot was blocked by Ger Cafferkey. Mayo were still looking solid though and were able to maintain a three or four point buffer up until Barry O’Driscoll’s booming effort from distance made it 0-12 to 0-10 with nine minutes left on the clock.

Jason Doherty looked to have secured the points for Mayo when he responded shortly after to put a goal between them again but it was all Cork from there, and their cause was helped when Dillon was sent off with a few minutes to go after picking up his second yellow. With time running out, Mayo remained one point ahead but Cork showed far greater determination in the crucial final moments, and Kerrigan’s equaliser was quickly followed up by O’Connor’s smart finish to stun Mayo.