Cork City returned to winning ways in the SSE Airtricity League Premier Division as they narrowly defeated St Patrick's Athletic 1-0 at Turners Cross on Friday evening.
A stunning header from Graham Cummins at the beginning of the second half was enough to separate the sides and earn John Caulfield's men a much needed three points which sees them climb to second place.
Pat's remained unchanged from the side that demolished Bray Wanderers 5-0 at Richmond Park last week and they made the brighter start here.
Both Dean Clarke and Conan Byrne threatened during the opening exchanges and it took superb blocks from City defenders Conor McCarthy and Colm Horgan respectively to deny the visitors an early lead.
The Leesiders made two changes to the side that suffered a 2-1 defeat away to Waterford in the Munster Derby last time out and they went close to edging in front after a quarter of an hour.
Barry McNamee's in-swinging corner picked out Cummins lurking at the back post but the striker was unfortunate to see his clever header back across goal crash against the inside of the far upright.
Following that frantic opening period, the game soon adopted a much slower tempo much to the frustration of the 4,402 crowd in attendance.
Genuine goal scoring chances soon dried up as a result although City goalkeeper Mark McNulty was twice called into action before the half-time interval but on both occasions, he was easily able to deny Dean Clarke and Jake Keegan's tame efforts.
But the champions would finally break the deadlock just five minutes into the second half as Cummins notched his sixth league goal of the season when he looped his header over Barry Murphy and into the back of the Shed End net.
The home side remained in control of proceedings following that goal but it wasn't until the 70th minute that they next went close to scoring.
But after being invited to shoot, Gearoid Morrissey drove his powerful strike from the edge of the box wide of the far right post.
And Pat's ought to have punished City just one minute later but Ryan Brennan somehow turned a long free-kick into the box wide of the back stick from a few yards out.
The Dubliners introduced Christy Fagan with a quarter of an hour to play as they looked to pile players forward and the striker went close to scoring almost immediately.
But his half volley from just inside the penalty area sailed over the bar for what proved to be their final chance of the match as City clung on to the win.