Kilkenny lay down marker but Orla Cronin's piece of genius wins the day
The All-Ireland champions rallied, but the league champions mercilessly cut off their supplies.
In the end, it was Shelly Farrell who climbed the Nowlan Park steps and hoisted aloft the league trophy that makes it three-in-a-row for Kilkenny but, more importantly, sends out a message that they're coming back and gunning to reclaim the All-Ireland.
In an absorbing camogie final, Cork mounted an audacious comeback from 10 points adrift and had the home side clinging on in the end but cling on the Cats did - all the way to the finish line.
Denise Gaule hit six of their scores in an eventual 0-15 to 1-11 win but the heat was turned up something serious by the Rebels in the second period as the hosts were limited to just three scores after the break, despite Cork operating with 14 players in the closing stages.
And it looked like the Munster outfit had found that special bit of inspiration from a special, special player when Orla Cronin worked pure magic to find the net for the first score of the second half.
The Cork centre forward collected a recycled pass at the edge of the D and, despite coming under intense scrutiny there from two Kilkenny backs, she took the thing the whole way with mouthwatering improvisation.
Cronin drifted to the left and forward with the sliotar resting invitingly to her right, almost teasing the defenders to commit and she ended up dragging four Cats players to the endline, four cats chasing after a piece of string. There, she flicked the most deft of finishes gloriously over the 'keeper's head and into the back of the net and jogged away like it's nothing she doesn't do every night in training.
Cracking goal by Orla Cronin @CorkCamogie
Scór Deiridh @LittlewoodsIRL Camogie Leagues Division 1 Final @KilkennyCamogie 0-15 @CorkCamogie 1-11
Trí sraith buaite as a chéile! #GAABEO pic.twitter.com/YaQkZJC8mu
— Spórt TG4 (@SportTG4) April 8, 2018
But, despite sparking a revival for the Leesiders, Kilkenny dug deeper at the well and came out with the goods. The trophy and a frightening statement to the rest of the country that they've gone absolutely nowhere.
SCORERS FOR KILKENNY: D Gaule 0-6(4fs, 1 45); M Walshe 0-3, K Power 0-2, J Clifford 0-2, S Farrell 0-1, A Doyle 0-1
SCORERS FOR CORK: O Cronin 1-1; L Collins, O Cotter (fs) 0-3 each; K Mackey 0-2; G O’Connor, A Thompson 0-1 each
KILKENNY: J Frisby, C Phelan, C Foley, G Walsh, M Teehan, M Farrell, D Tobin, A Dalton, D Gaule, A Doyle, K Power, S Farrell, M Quilty, M Walshe, J Clifford. Subs: J Malone for Clifford (58), D Morrissey for Quilty (58), C Dormer for Walsh (60)
CORK: A Murray, L O’Sullivan, L Treacy, P Mackey, L Coppinger, G O’Connor, C Sigerson, A Sheehan, A Thompson, O Cronin, O Cotter, K Mackey, L Collins, N McCarthy, A O’Connor. Subs: H Looney for McCarthy (ht), J White for O’Connor (44), L Homan for Coppinger (54), A Lee for K Mackey (56), M Cahalane for O’Sullivan (60+1)