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Sunday, 5 May, 2002, 16:01 GMT 17:01 UK
Kilkenny edge out Cork
Henry Shefflin hit some key Kilkenny scores
Henry Shefflin (centre) was in action for Kilkenny
Allianz NHL Division 1 Final:
Kilkenny 2-15 2-14 Cork

Kilkenny claimed their 10th National Hurling League title with a thrilling one-point victory over Cork in Sunday's decider at Thurles.

Brian Dowling's injury-time point clinched the match, finally repelling a brave Cork fightback.

The Rebels trailed by five at half-time but Bertie Og Murphy's side produced some tremendous hurling in the second period to take the lead on three occasions.

Martin Comerford hit a third minute goal for Kilkenny after taking a fine pass from Eddie Brennan and Brian Cody's side stretched their lead to 1-3 to 0-0 after nine minutes.

Comerford gave Cork full-back Diarmuid O'Sullivan a torrid time early on and the Rebel defence was once again breached in the 15th minute when John Hoyne hit the net.

Eamon Collins gave Cork hope in the 22nd minute when he hit the first of his two goals.

Andy Comerford (right) helped Kilkenny to victory
Andy Comerford (right): Set up Cats winner

Kilkenny led 2-9 to 1-7 at the interval but Cork aided by a slight breeze, quickly chipped away at the Cats' advantage.

Collins hit his second goal nine minutes after the restart and when Diarmuid O'Sullivan hit over a long-range point, the Rebels were suddenly in the lead.

Substitute Brian Dowling quickly levelled with a Kilkenny point.

Alan Browne put Cork ahead on two further occasions with points but both leads were short-lived with Henry Shefflin and Sean Dowling quickly responding.

The match seemed set for a replay but in injury-time Andy Comerford set up Brian Dowling for a score which earned Kilkenny their first NHL title since 1995.

In the Bank of Ireland Leinster Football Championship, Louth came from seven points down midway through the second half to draw 1-14 to 2-11 against Longford.

Paddy Carr's side kept Longford scoreless for the final 19 minutes.

Longford hit the opening goal in the sixth minute with Paul Barden hitting the net with a great shot after a fine sweeping move.

Sunday replay

The goal helped Longford to a 1-7 to 0-8 interval lead.

Trevor Smullen's punched goal in the 43rd minute seemed likely to clinch the match for Longford with them now seven points clear.

However, JP Rooney replied with a Louth goal in the 56th minute and with Longford wilting, four further points ensured the replay.

Ollie McDonnell's leveller came in injury-time.

The replay will take place in Longford next Sunday.

Allianz NHL final (full-time):
Kilkenny 2-15 2-14 Cork

Allianz NHL Division 3 final (full-time):
Louth 0-12 1-12 Longford

Allianz NHL Division 4 final (full-time):
Mayo 1-14 4-5 Monaghan

Bank of Ireland Leinster SFC (full-time):
Louth 1-14 2-11 Longford

Connacht SFC (2000 BST):
New York v Sligo

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 ON THIS STORY
BBC's Mark Sidebottom
"It was spellbinding"
See also:

05 May 02 |  Northern Ireland
Laois fightback stuns Antrim
05 May 02 |  Northern Ireland
Cavlan inspires Dungannon win
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