ODM MUNSTER SENIOR CUP: SEMI-FINAL: Saturday, December 31
DOLPHIN 35 CASHEL 3, Musgrave Park
Scorers: Dolphin: Tries: James Coughlan 2, Derek O'Riordan, Shane O'Halloran; Cons: Barry Keeshan 3; Pens: Keeshan 3
Cashel: Pen: Oliver McGlinchey
Dolphin will contest their first Munster Senior Cup final in 30 years in February after thumping junior side Cashel 35-3. The AIB League Division Two outfit had too much class as they scored four tries - talismanic captain James Coughlan grabbed a brace.
The powerful Coughlan, who enjoyed a ding-dong number 8 battle with Ed Leamy, younger brother of Ireland international Denis, touched down after six minutes to set Dolphin on their way. Fly-half Barry Keeshan converted and flanker Derek O'Riordan soon added a second try, crossing from a driving lineout maul.
Keeshan tagged on a 22nd-minute penalty to confirm the Cork side's dominance, but Cashel scrum half Oliver McGlinchey mustered an injury-time penalty of his own for a 15-3 half-time score line.
As the drizzly rain increased, penalties from Keeshan on 46 and 67 minutes stretched Dolphin's lead to 18 points and winger Shane O'Halloran's subsequent try all but confirmed their passage through to the final.
Keeshan converted that score and there was still time for man-of-the-match Coughlan to lunge over in injury-time for his second try. Keeshan again added the extras for a personal haul of 15 points.
Dolphin, who lost the 1976 final to UCC, have the arduous task of facing holders Shannon in February's decider. Mick Galwey's side, who claimed a record sixth straight Munster Senior Cup title last season, beat Garryowen 16-14 on Friday night.
Dolphin: Darragh O'Mahony; Shane O'Halloran, Mike Kingsbeer, Garry O'Keeffe, David Kingston; Barry Keeshan, Jack Purcell; Mick Powell, Kieran Murray, John O'Sullivan, Rory McGrath, Dave Harty, Derek O'Riordan, Donnacha Murphy, James Coughlan (capt).
Replacements used: George Finn for O'Riordan (45 mins), Darren Blower for Murray, Kevin Coughlan for Harty (both 66), Ger Fitzgerald for Purcell (71).
Cashel: John Maher; Alan O'Donnell, Diarmuid O'Connor, Patrick O'Dwyer-Hickey, Eamonn Foley; Trevor Breen, Oliver McGlinchey; Ed Horgan, TJ Hickey, Shane Nolan, Evan Lonergan, TJ Connolly, Eoin O'Connor, Kevin Leamy, Ed Leamy.
Replacements used: Damien Fogarty for E O'Connor (half-time), Edwin Thompson for Horgan (63 mins), Patrick Kelly for K Leamy (69), Gareth McGlinchey for Maher (74).
Referee: Leo Colgan (MAR)