Defiant 14-man Galway minors pipped at the post in thrilling semi-final

Tipperary 1-24

Galway 0-26

(After extra-time)

John McIntyre at the Gaelic Grounds

ONE of the most heroic displays ever by a Galway under-age hurling team ended in heart-breaking if honourable defeat in this marathon All-Ireland semi-final defeat at the Gaelic Grounds on Saturday.

Harshly reduced to 14 players three minutes from half-time, a defiant Galway came within a whisker of defying the odds only to be nailed on the line by Munster champions Tipperary in a drama-filled climax to extra-time.

It was a tough outcome on everybody associated with this Galway team, notably two players at opposite ends of the field – goalkeeper Seán Kelly, who made a string of top-quality saves, and Brian Callanan, who’s outstanding haul of 15 points included six glorious efforts from play.

Galway had emptied the energy tanks in bidding to reach the All-Ireland final and it was only in the closing moments of extra-time that their numerical disadvantage for so long finally caught up with them. Most of the boys in maroon were now out on their feet.

It was a gut-wrenching result in the circumstances, especially as they had established a two-point lead with only three minutes of extra-time remaining. Galway were almost there as Tipperary looked to be out of ideas against the strengthening wind.

But it to the credit of James Woodlock’s charges that they found sufficient inspiration to pull the game out of the fire with three late points from the stylish Euan Murray, substitute Killian Cantrell and the outstanding Cillian Minogue to snatch the spoils.

Cue devastation in the Galway ranks. They had left it all on the field but having to soldier for over 45 minutes with 14 players after the dismissal of wing back Rhys O’Connor for an off-the-ball ‘flick’ – and I use the word deliberately – on Tipperary midfielder Darragh O’Hora.

Having reviewed the incident multiple times, it was a shocking decision by Dublin referee Chris Mooney. O’Connor made minimal contact with his opponent and the red card was a blatant miscarriage of justice. You can’t be sending off players for such harmless use of the hurley.

Pictured: Galway defender Cathal Maloney prepares to block down this point attempt by Tipperary’s Eoghan Doughan during Saturday’s All-Ireland Minor Hurling semi-final at the Gaelic Grounds. Photos: Joe Keane.


For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune:

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app

The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

More like this:

Sign Up To get Weekly Sports UPDATES

Go Up