2011 All-Ireland Quarter Final: Mayo v Cork
All Ireland Quarter Final
31 July 2011
Two teams that had last met in HQ in the 2010 League Final – a one sided affair that underlined the strength of this Cork side and raised many questions about the Connacht men. Cork not only won the 2010 League title but retained it in 2011 and in between they had of course added an All Ireland title. So, despite their loss to Kerry in the Munster final there was no question that the Rebels were serious contenders to go all the way again in 2011. They had underlined that by brushing aside Down, the team they beat in last years final, in a Round 4 qualifier match just a week earlier. One concern was an injury list that included some key players.
Mayo, under new manager James Horan, had reclaimed the Connacht title from Roscommon but there was nothing in their match performances to date to suggest they were capable of beating the bookies odds on this game. Horan had introduced some new faces to his panel, including ex minor star Cillian O’Connor who had impressed in the Connacht campaign, but many pundits still questioned their readiness to return to Croke Park with any chance of dethroning the reigning champions.
Cork got off to a flying start and the odds looked like being on the button but a defiant Mayo, personified by Man of the Match Andy Moran, caused the shock of the season. A clash that was seen by most as a ‘no contest’ turned out to be one of the matches of the season. Mayo 1-13 : Cork 2-06