Galway hurlers too strong for below par Dublin

Galway manager Michéal Donoghue watches Cathal Mannion pull away from Dublin's Shane Barrett in action from the Leinster Hurling Championship quarter final at O'Connor Park, Tullamore on Sunday. Photo:-Mike Shaughnessy

Galway manager Michéal Donoghue watches Cathal Mannion pull away from Dublin's Shane Barrett in action from the Leinster Hurling Championship quarter final at O'Connor Park, Tullamore on Sunday. Photo:-Mike Shaughnessy

The Galway hurlers were far too strong last Sunday for Ger Cunningham's Dublin outfit in O'Connor Park in Tullamore

Galway won pulling up in front of a crowd of 14,316 - mainly Galway supporters - by 2-28 to 1-17 against a Dublin outfit lacking in cohesion,

It was a game that never burst into life at any stage, and the mood among the Galway fans on the terraces was one of quiet satisfaction that the team is progressing well, while also knowing bigger challenges are some weeks off.

This win sees Micheál Donoghue's side qualify for the Leinster semi-final in Portlaoise on Sunday June 18 against Offaly, who were narrow winners over Westmeath in Mullingar on Saturday.

The Offaly men needed key forward Shane Dooley to come good with two late goals of his 3-8 tally to win by four points, 4-15 to 1-20.

Win came at a high price

Galway's win over Dublin came at a high price with key corner back Paul Killeen now out for the season after suffering a cruciate knee injury in the first half.

The Tynagh/Abbey/Duniry man, having a super season, had cemented the left corner back position, and his injury is a big disappointment for him personally, and a significant loss to the squad.

Rahoon's John Hanbury came on when Killeen was forced off, and he looks the most likely player to take over in the corner back slot.

Although the Dublin squad is struggling for confidence at the moment, and the manager is under pressure, it did not affect Galway. They had a job to do and they went about it efficiently once they found their stride in the second quarter.

They scored an impressive 2-23 from play and it could have been more had they not hit 13 wides, some of them from good positions.

However, the forwards did look sharp with Conor Whelan catching the eye with his pace and directness in front of goal. He shot 0-5 from play, and the Kinvara man looks to be in very good form coming into the championship.

Jason Flynn and Conor Cooney also grabbed goals and went about their business with a strong work-rate and movement all through the contest.

Joe Canning hit 0-9 - four from play - and his glorious pass to Jason Flynn in the first half was one of the highlights of the game. His vision and ability to find teammates with the right pass at the right time is spectacular, and he seems to be really enjoying the freer role that he has, drifting between centre-forward and out around the field.

David Burke also linked up well and shot three lovely points, while Padraic Mannion and Aidan Harte were top class in the wing-back positions.

While it was a good performance from Galway, there are plenty of things to work on, not least the ease with which Dublin scored their goal just before half-time. Donal Burke and goal-scorer Ben Quinn were given far too much space, and that Dublin goal meant the half-time score was only 1-10 to 1-07 despite Galway having dominated proceedings.

Donoghue not happy

Galway manager Micheál Donoghue was not happy with that score either.

"In the build up to it, we probably missed two pick-ups," he says. "At that stage of the game we were in control and it would have been nice to have that cushion going in at half-time. Fair play to Dublin, they were resilient, but we are happy with the result and we move on from here."

Galway are not getting ahead of themselves, but taking it one game at a time. And the next one is the Leinster semi-final in three weeks time in Portlaoise against Offaly.

The winners of that tie will be in a provincial final on July 2 against either Brian Cody's Kilkenny or Davy Fitzgerald's Wexford.

Advertisement

 

Page generated in 0.0530 seconds.