Hurlers face resurgent Tipp on Monday
The Galway hurlers will try to bounce back from their two-point defeat to Clare last Sunday in Ennis when they welcome Tipperary to Salthill this Bank Holiday Monday (2pm).
Tipperary had a satisfying and badly-needed 2-17 to 1-19 over Kilkenny last weekend in Semple Stadium, and they will travel to Pearse Stadium in good spirits.
Their new manager this season, Eamon O Shea, was involved with the team when it won the All-Ireland title under Liam Sheedy in 2010, and he was delighted with the team's improving form after their win over the Cats.
"This is one step on the way to becoming a good team. There will be many more steps before we really can count ourselves as being where we want to be. I thought the team showed fine character and mettle."
Tipperary's display led by Eoin Kelly, Lar Corbett, Brendan Maher, Noel McGrath and Paul Curran impressed Galway selector Tom Helebert who says Galway now face a tough task.
"Tipperary will be fired up to get another two points this weekend. They were very impressive last Sunday and they got the ball into the danger area quickly and effectively, especially from their half back line. They were very direct and they played with a nice rhythm. We are going into Monday's clash with our eyes open and we know it will be a real ding-dong battle."
Helebert was not overly critical about Galway's performance last weekend, except the team’s failure to convert four clear goal chances.
"We did not take our chances when they arrived and that cost us dearly at the finish. We took them against Kilkenny and that was the difference in the two performances. You have to take your chances when they come if you are going to be successful. We have analysed the video and none of the panel would be happy with the scoring opportunities we did not avail of.
"We were not ruthless enough in front of goal and that is something we will be working on all week to have it right for next Monday. We worked hard against Clare and gave it our best shot, but if we were more efficient in front of goal, we could have won."
Best wishes to St Thomas
Helebert, along with the rest of the Galway management team and panel, is hoping Galway will have new All-Ireland club champions by the time they face Tipperary on Monday.
"We are all behind St Thomas and it would be fantastic for them and for Galway hurling if they can collect the All-Ireland club title on Sunday.
“ It will be a big boost for the Galway panel too and, with four of the Thomas lads on our panel at the moment, everyone is rooting for them. There are no limits in Croke Park and if they go out and express themselves as they can, they are well capable of coming home as All-Ireland champions. We wish them well."