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End of road for Galway League after shootout loss to Wexford

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The Galway U13 team which lost out to Mayo (2-1) in the SFAI U13 Inter League at Eamonn Deacy Park. Front row, left to right: Baba Adeeka, Dave Gavriliak, Ethen Fiorentino, Josh Buckley, Colm Cunningham, Daniel Cox, Ben Molloy and Dave Lee. Back row: Dangelo Messan, Leon Daly, Gareth Molloy, Liam Corcoran, Donnie Halloran, Ryan Concannon, Conal Harkin, Charlie Concannon, Lewis Waweru and Evan Nolan.

Wexford League 1

Galway League 1

(Wexford won 6-5 on pens)

AFTER qualifying from the group stages of the Oscar Traynor Cup for the first time in many years, Galway’s odyssey in the competition ended in dramatic circumstances in Gorey on Saturday evening.

On an occasion when they missed a hatful of chances in the opening half in particular, they continued their error ridden performance in the shootout when failing to convert four penalties at a time when any score would have seen them qualify for the last eight.

In contrast, goalkeeper James Keane could not have done anymore as four smashing penalty saves, allied to scoring his own effort, helped maintain the Galway challenge as both sides required 11 penalties before the home side eventually advanced.

The Tribesman’s cause was not helped by the dismissal of two players which meant that two of the team had to shoot twice in the penalty contest. Wexford were also reduced to ten men as one from each side went in a contentious moment.

Galway’s first half performance should have being better rewarded as they created a host of chances, but had to settle for a 1-0 interval advantage as Mike Elwood headed home a Keith Ward set piece delivery on 19 minutes.

A questionable offside decision ruled out what looked to be a good Simon Walsh goal, while Colm O’Donovan and Alex Lee were denied by goal line clearances in the same attack. Sean Gavin was guilty of a misdirected header from in front of goal, while a bad bounce did O’Donovan no favours when through with just the goalkeeper to beat.

While Wexford enjoyed supremacy in the closing stages of the half, just a Paul Muphy effort extended ‘keeper Keane, before the midfielder eventually got the better of the College custodian on 76 minutes with a cracking shot that levelled matters. Subsequently, caution appeared to be the byword in the latter stages and extra time as few opportunities were created at either end.

The penalty shootout more than compensated for that with loads of drama and with Wexford shooting first, James Keane put Galway in the driving seat on a number of occasions with terrific saves, but unfortunately, a number of his colleagues could not take advantage as they too fluffed their lines with missed penalties.

Wexford custodian Gary McCleane equally played a huge part in their success, with three saves in the shootout. Eventually, the home side prevailed by 6-5 and, in the process, set up a home quarter-final against either the Kerry League or the Defence Forces.

Afterwards manager Garret Gorman was hugely disappointed by the outcome. “It was one we certainly left behind us as the missed chances came back to haunt us. We should certainly have put them away in the opening half.

“In the shootout, James Keane put us in the driving seat on four occasions with terrific saves, but each time we failed to take advantage and score ourselves. Now if we were beaten by a better team, it would be easier to accept, but overall the outcome was disappointing  as a win was within our capabilities”.

Galway League: James Keane, T Walsh, S Rodden, J Woods, M Elwood, J Finn (A Lee), S Gavin (K McHugh), DRyan (Jonathan Keane), K Ward, C O’Donovan, S Walsh.

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.

CITY TRIBUNE

Big boost for Connacht as dozen make Irish squads

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Former Galway minor hurler Shane Jennings who is one of six Connacht players named on the Irish U20 rugby squad for the upcoming Six Nations.

By Rob Murphy

THERE was some off season good news for Connacht this week with confirmation of 12 players from the Sportsground having made it into international squads at senior and U-20 level.

Six Connacht players were called into Andy Farrell’s 37-man senior international squad for next month’s two tests against Japan and USA. Three of those are looking to make their international debut in Tom Daly, Paul Boyle and Caolin Blade; while three more are looking to continue their progress with the Irish squad in Dave Heffernan (5 caps), Ultan Dillane (18 caps) and Finlay Bealham (14 caps).

For Daly, the progress from fringe starter to captaining Connacht has been a rapid one. The 27-years-old inside centre from Carlow is now a key part of Andy Friend’s plans having led the way in starts this season and his consistent form has clearly caught the eye of Farrell too, with the recent stand-out effort in the win over Munster at Thomond Park no doubt a key factor.

At 24, Boyle has already amassed 57 appearances in the green of Connacht having made his debut in 2017. He also has captained Connacht on multiple occasions and while he missed some of the end of season Rainbow Cup games, the Gorey native was a consistent almost ever present part of the back row during the PRO14 campaign.

Monivea man Blade is back in Ireland camp for the second season in a row and will hope to get his first cap this time around. The 27-years-old is being rewarded for another excellent season in the nine shirt for Connacht where he led the team in starts at scrum half and scored five tries in 20 appearances.

Ireland will play two games in the Aviva Stadium next month starting with a clash against Japan on July 3 before they host USA on July 10.

The Irish U-20s will be involved in Six Nations action, starting tomorrow against Scotland with the month-long tournament taking place entirely in Cardiff to help guarantee a safe environment for players.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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CITY TRIBUNE

Galway surrender top flight status after Clones collapse

Stephen Glennon

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Galway’s Robert Finnerty who scored 1-3 in their costly National League relegation play-off defeat to Monaghan in Clones on Sunday.

Monaghan 1-21

Galway 2-17

(After Extra-Time)

NO thermometer was required to take the temperature of those hundred or so die-hard Galway supporters who travelled to Clones last Sunday. With their side five points to the good and time almost up, they watched on in horror as a winning lead was blown.

The result: Galway beaten. The result: Galway are no longer a Division 1 county. The result: Galway now have just won one game in their last seven competitive outings. The result: Galway have gone from a side on the brink of something in spring of 2020 to an outfit that has regressed and have now been cast back to the land of mediocrity.

That Galway boss Padraic Joyce didn’t make himself available to the media afterwards to put some positive spin on the performance only compounded the result. By not offering some take, he left a dangerous void in which disgruntled supporters have begun to weave their own narrative about where Joyce’s Galway are at.

Ironically, with time almost up in Clones, it appeared the Tribesmen had turned the corner after a poor run of form. First half goals from Paul Kelly and Rob Finnerty saw Galway lead this thrilling relegation game by five points going down the home stretch, but in the five minutes plus of normal time injury-time, they came undone.

In hindsight, hauling off Galway’s two best forwards – Robert Finnerty and Shane Walsh (although he was nowhere near his best) – was a mistake as it not only blunted the point of attack but deprived it of the guile and experience that they needed to see this game out.

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.

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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.

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CITY TRIBUNE

Galway U20s set to make up for lost time in delayed final

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Conor Walsh who is a key member of the Galway U20 hurling team seeking Leinster final glory when they take on Dublin next Wednesday.

GALWAY’S U20 hurlers have a number of injury concerns ahead of their long overdue 2020 Leinster final clash against Dublin at O’Connor Park, Tullamore, next Wednesday evening, June 23. Throw-in 7:30pm.

Among them are Sarsfields midfielder Alex Connaire and Craughwell wing-forward Adrian Prendergast, both of whom scored in the Tribesmen’s victories over Laois and Kilkenny last December, but they now look set to miss the provincial decider with groin and pelvis injuries respectively.

“This game is just too early for them, it has just come too quick,” says Galway manager Jeffrey Lynskey, who says Connaire and Prendergast join an injury list that also includes long-term victims Mark Gill of Castlegar (metatarsal) and Conor Hynes of Liam Mellows (shoulder).

“We are lucky enough though that we have depth in the squad and can pull on lads who are performing and doing well (in training). They have trained well, in fairness to them, over the last five weeks.”

Indeed, Lynskey says the form is good in the camp, outlining the focus has been getting the players back up to speed with in-house and challenges games against the Galway development panel.

“In all the in-house and challenge games, they have performed really well. They are all looking forward to getting back. They have trained hard, really, over the last five weeks and they put a serious bloc of work in during the third lockdown. Gym-wise, they all came back in fantastic shape.

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.

 

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