Hurlers find Waterford in unforgiving mood
Last Monday I met a few punters around the town who were very disappointed with Galway's 0-22 to 1-13 defeat to Waterford in Walsh Park, as that result scuttled what were otherwise well predicted accumulators and trebles that had come up.
However, it was difficult to have too much sympathy for their woes as it was well acknowledged that Galway have struggled with Waterford in the championship, in particular, over the past few years and last Sunday was no different.
Galway played with the wind in the first half and they did themselves no favours by hitting eight wides in that first 35 minutes, some of them of the "should have been scored" variety.
Anthony Cunningham's charges were behind by 0-9 to 0-8 at the small whistle and they were always going to face a tough task in the second half, especially being weakened with the absence of the Portumna contingent, target man Jonathan Glynn (broken finger), Niall Burke and Cyril Donnellan.
The more experienced and physically strong Waterford players such as Kevin Moran and Michael "Brick" Walsh really took over in the last quarter, winning most of the dirty ball and the breaking ball, and they fully merited their six-point win.
Despite last Sunday's defeat, however, Galway remain on top of division 1A on points difference (+7), after two rounds.
The hurlers will face Kilkenny in Nowlan Park on March 9, and that is a game that will give a really good indication of where the panel is at.
Kilkenny hit 5-20 last Sunday in their thrilling win over Tipperary and their forwards are sure to ask some serious questions of the Galway rearguard.
Galway will have to up the intensity all over the field from what they produced against Waterford if they are to survive that black and amber forward onslaught.
Before that clash the Galway players representing Connacht will face Leinster this Saturday (5pm) in the inter-provincial final at Croke Park.
After the footballers’ win last weekend, it would be nice to do the Connacht double.
Galway v Waterford: C Callanan, F Moore, R Burke, J Coen, A Harte, I Tannian, D Collins, D Burke 0-1, P Brehony 0-2, K Hynes, C Cooney 0-6 (0-2f), J Flynn 1-0; N Healy 0-1, C Mannion 0-3, D Glennon. Subs: P Landers for Hynes (28m), Daithí Burke for Glennon (43m), D Dolan for Landers (62m), R. Cummins for Mannion (65m).