Classifieds Advertise Archive Subscriptions Family Announcements Photos Digital Editions/Apps
Connect with us

Sports

Hurlers flunk key test in losing top flight status

Published

on

Galway 0-25

Cork 2-22

NOT the end of the world but a pretty dire result nonetheless.

Galway slipped out of the top tier for the first time in quarter of a century after succumbing to late goals from cocky Cork. They will next year contest Division 1B of the National Hurling League, along with some of the minnows of the game, Kerry and Offaly. Playing like they did on Sunday at Pearse Stadium, they won’t be out of place in the lower division.

How did it come to this? Galway was 35 minutes away from capturing Liam McCarthy last September and now they’ve slipped out of the country’s top six teams.

It cannot be analysed without reference to the peculiarity of the league system. Prior to the weekend, Galway earned one win and two draws and Cork lost all five games, and yet it came down to a winner-takes-all battle. It hardly seems fair. But they’re the rules.

What has to be factored into the entire league performance, too, is here was a squad that used its collective muscle to force regime change in a winter of discontent. The back-drop to this competition was Anthony Cunningham’s messy departure; the elephant in the room.

So it wasn’t an ordinary league; and Sunday wasn’t an ordinary league match. Survival was on the line. Reputations were on the line. It was high-stakes. Galway had something to prove.

And yet instead of laying down a marker early, they were flat, struggled to get to the pace of the game, and were second best in the first half in particular.

Cork was under pressure too. They were stung by criticism this spring – much of it merited – and so there was always going to be a sting in their tail.

But what about Galway, where was their kick? Backs to the wall and yet the response wasn’t adequate.

At some stage the players will have to stop pointing the finger of blame at the person who is managing them.

You’ve got to cut manager Micheál Donoghue some slack. His appointment Christmas week means the other counties had a head-start in terms of preparations. He’s been unlucky with injuries and in fairness, through necessity and experimenting, Donoghue used over 30 players in the campaign, probably the most tangible positive to be taken from the disappointment.

It’s worth noting that none of what happened in the league will matter one jot if Galway can capture an All-Ireland title this summer. Had Galway won the league, we wouldn’t get carried away, so it’s important not to be too despondent. But still, this result is bad for momentum, bad for morale, bad for the optics, and it’s a bad omen for the year ahead. It was the underperformance as much as the result that will rankle with grassroots.

Extensive coverage in this week’s Connacht Tribune.

CITY TRIBUNE

Galway minors continue to turn season around with latest win over Derry

Published

on

Galway players Seán Dunne, Fionn O'Connor and Adam Colleran celebrating their All-Ireland Minor Football semi-final win over Derry at Parnell Park on Saturday. Photo: Ray McManus /Sportsfile.

THE results may not have gone Galway’s way in the Connacht minor football championship, but team manager Alan Glynn never lost faith in his young squad.

And his belief in them has certainly been justified following deserved victories over Dublin and Derry in the All-Ireland series, setting Galway up for a unique third championship collision with Mayo in the one year.

The more games Galway are playing, the better they are getting, and Glynn is in no doubt that their extended championship run will do wonders for the development of his players.

But after losing three times in Connacht – twice to Mayo – how did Glynn, and his backroom team of Tim Rabbitt and Michéal Antaine Ó Loidéain, manage to turn their season around?

“We did speak in the dressing-room after that game [Connacht final] and we said, ‘look that’s the Connacht championship done with, that’s one competition finished and we’re now into a new All-Ireland competition.’

“There were eight teams left and we took that look to things. At the end of the day, we had lost three games in Connacht, and I suppose if you were to dwell on that, we could get bogged down and we could get negative. We just said, ‘We’ve finished second in Connacht. Not what we wanted but it’s where we were and we’re now into the last eight.’

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.

 

Continue Reading

CITY TRIBUNE

Aki captains Ireland, scores a try but tourists’ first match ends in heavy defeat

Published

on

Ireland captain Bundee Aki touches down for a first-half try against the Maori All Blacks on Wednesday, but the game ended in a disappointing loss for the tourists.

IT should have been a night to savour for Bundee Aki who was honoured with the Irish captaincy for the first game of their daunting tour to New Zealand.

Leading an inexperienced tourist selection, Aki could hardly have wished for a better start after powering over for Ireland’s first try against the Maori All Blacks.

But it was nearly all downhill for the men in green subsequently on Wednesday. Ireland were repeatedly carved open and trailed by 32-10 at the break.

On a night when fellow Connacht player, flanker Cian Prendergast, also started and prop Finlay Bealham was a second-half substitute, Ireland never really fired despite not conceding another score on the resumption.

But all the tourists could add to their tally was a converted Gavin Coombes’ try in a disappointing opening to their five-match tour.

Ahead of the game, Aki said it was a “huge privilege” to captain Ireland against the Maori All Blacks after initially suspecting head coach Andy Farrell was joking about giving him the responsibility.

New Zealand-born Aki led a youthful side containing five uncapped players on Wednesday night as the Irish kicked-off their summer tour of his homeland.

For more, read this week’s Galway City 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.

 

 

 

Continue Reading

CITY TRIBUNE

Galway have more than a prayer of toppling Limerick

Published

on

Galway’s Tom Monaghan breaking away from Limerick’s Kyle Hayes during their National League encounter at the Gaelic Grounds last February The teams clash again in Sunday's All-Ireland semi-final.

THEY are unbeaten in the championship since the All-Ireland semi-final of 2019; are chasing a fourth Liam McCarthy Cup in five years; and when it comes to brute force and physicality, they have no peers in the game.

This is the Limerick team that Galway must upset the odds against in Sunday’s All-Ireland hurling semi-final at Croke Park (3.30pm). And though few give them a realistic chance of doing so, the Tribesmen are at least capable of giving the champions a searching test.

Galway will also draw encouragement from their last semi-final battle with Limerick in 2020 at an empty Croke Park. The teams were level in injury time only for the Shannonsiders to salvage a result with Tom Morrissey catching fire late on.

It was a contest with no goals (0-27 to 0-24) and benefiting from a flying start, Galway really carried the fight to Limerick despite suffering the loss of Cathal Mannion through injury in the opening-half. It was an occasion which also stood out for Joe Canning’s remarkable feat of converting four sideline cuts – a record number for one championship game.

The team’s long-time ace marksman is no longer involved, but apart from the also retired Aidan Harte and long-term injury victim Shane Cooney, Galway will again be relying on the bulk of those players from that semi-final of two years in their quest to turn the tables.

Naturally, it will be one less if, as anticipated, Gearóid McInerney fails to recover from the knee injury which forced him to hobble off before half-time in their quarter-final victory over Cork in Thurles last Saturday week.

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.

 

Continue Reading

Local Ads

Local Ads

Advertisement
Advertisement

Facebook

Advertisement

Trending