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No date for hurling draws

Stephen Glennon

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THE County Committee meeting – originally scheduled for March 18 – will be brought forward to next Monday night in an effort to bring closure to the recent controversy regarding the senior and intermediate club hurling championships.

Following a CCCC meeting on Tuesday, the decision was taken by Committee Chairman Noel Treacy – as was his prerogative – to reschedule the meeting “in order to bring clarity and closure to the recent issues and doubts surrounding the club championship competitions”.

Galway’s senior and intermediate hurling championships, along with a number of other competitions, were thrown into chaos after an objection from the Moycullen club forced the Hurling Committee to abandon their scheduled championship draws, which were to be aired live on Galway Bay FM last Thursday night.

It is understood Moycullen, relegated from senior last year, lodged an objection against the draws proceeding as the competition match regulations for 2014 had not been approved by the Galway County Committee – as should be the case under bye-law 22.

Consequently, the 2014 U-21 hurling championship draws, which had been made, will possibly have to be redone while the move also cast doubts over Galway’s Gaelic football competitions, in which a number of U-21 games have already been played.

However, Galway GAA Secretary John Hynes says he does not believe the football competitions will be affected by this latest controversy as the match regulations had been discussed at Football Committee level and had been subsequently endorsed by the CCCC.

“The Football Committee had reviewed their championships at a Football Committee meeting and discussed their match regulations at the start of the year and these were approved by the CCCC,” said Hynes.

“They still have to get approval from the County Committee and this will be done on Monday night. So, I suppose, for them, it was in transition. It’s a case of ‘once bitten, twice shy’.

“However, there is no problem with the football because they had discussed them at Committee level and I don’t think the same can be said about the hurling.”

This latest debacle arises out of on-going concerns relating to the structure of the Galway senior hurling championship over the past three years. Hynes explains there are two distinct issues at play here.

“The first issue relates to the senior structure or format. There were questions raised at the County Convention by the Athenry club in relation to rule 6.20, paragraph 3, that when it comes to a county championship, a county can organise a bye in the first round but after that any other bye needs approval from Central Council if it is to comply with rule.

“We knew this last year and, as a result, we checked it out with the Rules Advisory Committee who recommended we send it on to Central Council for approval. And this was approved on February 21,” outlined Hynes, who said the second issue relates to match regulations.

 

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune

Galway’s ability to ‘mix it’ up with Tipperary proves telling

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NO WAY THROUGH: Tipperary's Karen Kennedy collides with Heather Cooney and Shauna Healy of Galway during Saturday's All-Ireland camogie semi-final at Pairc Uí Chaoimh. Photo: INPHO/Laszlo Geczo.

By Eanna O’Reilly

GALWAY’S victory over Tipperary in Saturday’s All-Ireland senior camogie semi-final required the attributes of physicality, doggedness and work rate, in what was a very attritional game.

The physicality of the Tipp side, along with the damp conditions and slippery surface on the Páirc Uí Chaoimh pitch, meant that an open game was always unlikely. In the circumstances, the Tribeswomen had to roll up their sleeves and dig in, in order to break Tipp down and ultimately outlast them.

It was a day when Galway’s fitness combined with their strength and conditioning work really stood to them, given the challenge posed by Tipp and the conditions on the day. Coming through such a test will surely stand to Cathal Murray’ side, while they certainly have the extra gear they will need for the final against Kilkenny.

In the opening quarter of Saturday’s game, Tipp showed the greater sharpness and energy. Some good inter-play and strong runs saw them break through the central channel on a couple of occasions, most notably when Karen Kennedy was taken down by Galway’s Shauna Healy.

Bill Mullaney’s side were winning a lot of breaks around the middle third, with Kennedy, Róisín Howard and Niamh Treacy prominent early on. They showed their inexperience however, in taking on some shots from difficult angles and hitting three early wides. They also missed a goal chance when Howard’s shot lacked the power to beat Sarah Healy.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Galway give their all but it’s not enough to carry day

John McIntyre

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Galway's Mannion brothers, Padraic and Cathal, try to halt the progress of Limerick's William O'Donoghue during Sunday's All-Ireland hurling semi-final at Croke Park. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile.

Limerick 0-27

Galway 0-24

John McIntyre at Croke Park

THE battle of hurling’s big beasts served up the anticipated physical war of attrition, but Sunday’s All-Ireland semi-final still fell far short of being classified as one of the sport’s epic contests of the modern era.

It was undoubtedly tense, edgy and robust with the outcome remarkably in doubt deep into injury time, but this eagerly awaited contest was riddled with poor handling, unforced errors and wayward shooting at times. The game only flowed in spots and the absence of a goal was another black mark.

Galway hurling teams have often returned from Croke Park loaded with regrets, but this wasn’t one of those occasions. Their commitment and resolution were beyond reproach, while the men in maroon could hardly have wished for a better start against the title favourites.

But having stormed into a 0-7 to 0-2 lead with corner forward Brian Concannon quickly catching fire, Galway were then outscored by 18 points to eight between the 15th and 50th minutes. By that juncture, Limerick were bossing the exchanges and had one foot in the All-Ireland final.

The champions of 2017, however, were a little too goal-hungry for their own good in the second-half, leaving Galway hanging on and they were forced to win the match for a ‘second time’ in a protracted period of injury time.

That fact that Limerick registered three of the final four points – including a hat-trick from the impressive Tom Morrissey – tells its own story. They were able to lift the tempo when needed but, overall, this was a somewhat underwhelming performance from the Shannonsiders.

Limerick’s wides tally of 16 compared to Galway’s 11 also reduces debate about the validity of the outcome. They had a few horrible misses on an evening their much-acclaimed half-forward line of Morrissey, Cian Lynch and Gearóid Hegarty still managed 11 points from play between them. In total, Galway only had ten.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Mission accomplished as Galway stay on course to retain All-Ireland title

Stephen Glennon

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Galway full back Sarah Dervan comes under pressure from Miriam Campion of Tipperary during Saturday's All-Ireland camogie semi-final at Pairc Uí Chaoimh. Photos: INPHO/Laszlo Geczo.

Galway 1-11

Tipperary 0-8

STEPHEN GLENNON AT PÁIRC UÍ CHAOIMH

A solid performance – nothing more, nothing less – from Galway in this hard-fought All-Ireland senior camogie semi-final at Páirc Uí Chaoimh on Saturday. On the champions march to a second consecutive final, where they will defend their crown against old foes Kilkenny.

It’s days like these when the result outweighs everything else and in overcoming Tipperary, a side that continues to improve game-on-game, Galway now have the opportunity to achieve something that the county has never done before: win back-to-back titles.

Standing in their way are their old nemesis Kilkenny, who will be driven to avenge their All-Ireland defeat to the Tribeswomen in last year’s September encounter.

That will be a potent motivating factor for Kilkenny as they look to buck a trend that has seen them lose six of the last seven All-Ireland finals they have appeared in since 2009 – two of those losses coming against Galway in 2013 and 2019.

Galway manager Cathal Murray will be wary and, certainly, it will not be lost on him just how impressive Kilkenny were in accounting for Cork, 2-10 to 1-11, in last Saturday’s curtain-raiser, particularly given the pressure Brian Dowling’s women came under when Cork raced into an early lead. It was an impressive recovery from the Cats.

In contrast, Galway, at times, stuttered to this victory. When they got into their flow, they looked to be a class apart but for long periods, they were forced to play this physical semi-final on their opponents’ terms.

What champions do, though, is that they find a way and this they did on Saturday. While Tipperary may argue the six-point margin didn’t reflect what they brought to the contest, in truth, Galway could have claimed this victory by much more.

Aside from Carrie Dolan’s brilliantly worked and taken goal on 15 minutes, Galway spurned goal chance after goal chance throughout the 60 minutes. Two of those were from the penalty spot, although in fairness to substitute Siobhan McGrath, who took the second penalty on 60 minutes, the instruction had come from the sideline to tap it over.

Galway’s first penalty midway through the second period was taken by Galway goalkeeper

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.

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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