Hurlers need to up the ante in Nowlan Park

The Galway hurlers face Tipperary at Pearse Stadium on Sunday (2pm ) in a vital round four Allianz Hurling League tie.

Following two consecutive defeats to Dublin and a narrow loss to Kilkenny last Sunday at Nowlan Park, Micheál Donoghue will be extremely keen to see his Galway charges back to winning ways, especially on home turf.

Another defeat and Galway will be in deep relegation trouble as they have to travel to Waterford for the next round, and with Derek McGrath’s men going great guns at the moment, that will be not an easy day out.

The bottom two teams in division 1A face a play-off to decide which team goes down to 1B for 2016 and Galway need a win on Sunday to try to avoid that. Cork already look doomed for the play-off with no points from three games. They were well hammered by Dublin last weekend by 4-21 to 2-17 and look like a team with a real loss of confidence at the moment. The Rebels shipped 3-6 without reply in the first half, leaving them with no real chance of getting anything from the tie.

Galway did something similar too. After a poor first half last Sunday in their tie with Kilkenny, they were 0-16 to 0-8 behind after forty minutes. However they rallied and outscored the home side by 1-6 to 0-5 thereafter.

Team manager Micheál Donoghue had mixed feelings. “We could have won it. We were way off the pace in the first half, but we improved immensely after that.”

This Sunday Donoghue will want his team to start the way they played for the final 30 minutes against Kilkenny to prevent leaving themselves with a mountain to climb.

Tipperary will be hurting too after their narrow 1-18 to 1-17 loss to Waterford in Semple Stadium, and this Sunday’s joust is set up nicely for a high quality and competitive game between two sides that produced the game of the year in their All-Ireland semi-final last year.

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